EB-5 Investment Visa: A Guide to Green Card Immigration Through Economic Investment

If you’re a foreign investor looking to manage a business in the U.S., you have a lot of visa options available to you. You know that a successful enterprise depends on decisions that you make at the very beginning—and that you only have one chance to get it right. So how can you be sure that the EB-5 investment visa is the right way for you and your family to come to the U.S.?

San Francisco, California EB-5 Investment Immigration attorney Vaughan de Kirby can help you take the guesswork out of the EB-5 visa process. In his FREE report, he offers step-by-step information on coming to the U.S. with an EB-5 visa—including filing paperwork, getting visas for your family members, and transitioning your visa into a green card. Click the link on this page to get your copy of the Complete Guide to the EB-5 Green Card: Critical Knowledge for Investors Who Want to Make the Best Decisions for Themselves and Their Families. 

What Are the Benefits of the EB-5 Investor Visa?

While many immigration visas offer opportunities to foreign nationals, the EB-5 is particularly attractive because it is a green card visa. This means that, if approved, you and your family will enjoy:

  • All the benefits given to every other United States resident
  • Unrestricted access to the U.S. (for both business and personal use)
  • Unlimited residency in the U.S. (no renewals or re-application requirements)
  • Freedom to live and work anywhere in the country
  • Potential to run or own your own business anywhere in the nation
  • Permanent green cards for you and each qualified member of your family
  • The ability to attain legal U.S. citizenship after five years of residence

Do You Qualify for an EB-5 Investor Visa?

The EB-5 green card is an investment visa, and requires the beneficiary to place a substantial amount of his or her funds into a U.S. business. There are two ways of fulfilling this obligation:

  • Direct Investment – Investors who choose to create a new enterprise, purchase an existing business, or reorganize a former business into a new entity must invest a minimum $1,000,000 into the commercial venture. In cases where the existing business is located in an area of severe unemployment—150 percent of the national unemployment rate—the investor may invest $500,000.
  • Regional Center Investment – Investors may finance a business in an area that has been designated by USCIS as having an especially high need for economic stimulus. The minimum investment in regional center businesses is $500,000.

Regardless which of these forms your investment takes, you will be responsible for creating at least 10 full-time U.S. jobs as part of your visa commitment. At the end of your two-year conditional residency, USCIS will evaluate your business and determine if you have invested the full amount of capital, and created the required number of jobs. If you have fulfilled the terms of your visa, you may apply to remove the conditions on your visa and enjoy unrestricted access to the U.S. with your permanent green card.

How Do I Apply for an EB-5 Visa?

As the investor, you may submit your own petition for an EB-5 visa to USCIS. However, you will also have to submit a number of documents, records, and other vital paperwork before you may be granted approval. Many applications are denied the first time they are reviewed because of a lack of sufficient evidence to support the beneficiary’s application.

If you want your investment visa application approved as quickly as possible, you should have a trusted immigration attorney review your petition and help you collect the necessary evidence for USCIS approval. At the Law Offices of Vaughan de Kirby, we can help you throughout the application process, advise you on how to invest your EB-5 funds, help you find the proper classification for your business venture, and help you achieve your family’s goal of becoming permanent U.S. citizens.

Contact us today at 415-221-2345 for more information, to order your FREE copy of our EB-5 attorney investment guide, or to set up a consultation with an attorney. Our friendly and helpful staff is always ready to assist new clients—including an exclusive Chinese-speaking staff to serve our EB-5 clients in the Far East.

Is EB-5 right for me?

Start Where do I turn?

If a United States Green Card is your goal for yourself and your family, you probably have many questions.

The following slides will help explain the steps and requirements Involved in the EB-5 investment immigration process.

Step 1 Learn about EB-5 and make a decision to hire an Investment Immigration Attorney

Free Consultation either in person or by phone with attorney Vaughan de Kirby to discuss your immigration goals.

To prepare for this consultation with Mr. de Kirby, be ready to explain the ideal immigration result for you and your family. This will help Mr. de Kirby determine if EB-5 would be your best choice.

If EB-5 is the right choice for you and your family, retain the Law Offices of Vaughan de Kirby and begin working with his expert team to identify the documentation needed to complete your EB-5 application.

Step 2 Make your selection of the Regional Center for your investment

This is an important decision as it impacts both your investment and your family’s immigration success. Because this decision is so important, you will want to have a professional perform a due diligence evaluation of any potential investment. Mr. de Kirby has had extensive experience in this area and can discuss the alternative due diligence options:

Use a due diligence company:
There are several companies offering different levels of due diligence.
Use an Investment Advisor:
There are Investment Advisors that do offer some level of due diligence on project selection.
Use a Registered Broker Dealer and Member of FINRA:
Your Broker Dealer can provide you with several alternative investments that you can consider for your EB-5 investment.
Step 3 Make your investment and file your I-526 application

You will have worked closely with Mr. de Kirby and his team to compile all the necessary documentation to support your EB-5 application.

This will include all the required documentation to show the lawful source of your investment funds, as well as all the supporting documentation from the USCIS-approved Regional Center you selected for your qualifying investment.
You will have wired to the Regional Center your investment funds, as well as the Regional Center administration fee.
With the investment in place, your expertly completed EB-5 (I-526) application, along with all supporting documentation, will be filed with the United States Customs and Immigration Service (USCIS).
Step 4 My EB-5 application is approved by USCIS

If you are currently living in the United States, Mr. de Kirby will file I-485 application to register you as a Permanent Resident. If you file your I-485 in the United States, you will generally receive your Permanent Resident Green Card in the mail. However, it is possible that you may be required to visit your local USCIS office for an interview.

If you are located in your home country, Mr. de Kirby will file a DS-230 or DS-260 application for an Immigrant Visa. You will then have an interview with a Consular Officer and be granted an Immigrant Visa. Your Immigrant Visa will be valid for six months. When you arrive in the United States, you will begin your your status as a Permanent Resident Green Card Holder.

Wherever you are located, you will then receive what is termed a "Conditional Green Card".

Step 5 Remove conditions and receive a Permanent Green Card

After you have held your Green Card for 21 months, Mr. de Kirby and his team will begin the I-829 process to remove the conditions on your Green Card.

To remove the conditions, you must show that your funds have remained invested and that the investment has created the requisite ten jobs.

A successful I-829 application gives you what is called a Permanent Green Card, which can be freely renewed every 10 years.

Step 6 Become a Naturalized United States Citizen

If your immigration goal is to become a United States Citizen, after 5 years as a Green Card holder you will qualify to file a Naturalization application.

The time is calculated from when you first received your Green Card, including the period when you held your Conditional Green Card.

United States Citizenship may not be your goal, and there is no requirement that you apply for naturalization. You can hold your Green Card indefinitely, requiring only that you renew it every ten years.

EB-5 Regional Center Program Ends 12/9/16

Congress has extended the current Regional Center program to December 9th, 2016, at which time it will sunset unless extended. We anticipate future legislation that will call for an increased investment amount and more stringent requirements. For this reason, we recommend to our clients that they take action under the current law if at all possible.

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Who Qualifies for EB5 Visas?

Any foreign national can qualify for EB-5 through an investment in a qualifying new commercial enterprise that creates ten jobs for United States Citizens or Permanent Residents. If the new commercial enterprise is located in a Target Employment Area (TEA), the investment amount can be $500,000, rather than the $1,000,000 that is required in any location outside a TEA.

Most of our clients select a USCIS-approved Regional Center as their qualifying investment. However, as an alternative, the investment may be made in a new commercial enterprise established and operated by the investor. In your free consultation Mr. de Kirby, he can thoroughly review these alternatives with you.

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The EB-5 Regional Center Program is a uniquely successful program offered by the United States Government that allows the individual investor to obtain Permanent Residency (Green Card) for themselves, their spouse and minor children with one investment into a USCIS-approved Regional Center.

To learn more about the EB-5 program click on the region you are immigrating from:

Free Books

Complete Guide To The EB-5 Green Card: Critical Knowledge For Investors Who Want To Make The Best Decisions For Themselves And Their Families

If you are seeking permanent residence status in the U.S., request a free copy of Complete Guide To The EB-5 Green Card to learn about the EB-5 visa program.

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EB-5 Due Diligence Workbook: Ten Critical Steps to An Informed Decision

Vaughan de Kirby's book, EB-5 Due Diligence Workbook: Ten Critical Steps to An Informed Decision was written for EB-5 investors who are selecting a regional center.

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Complete Guide To The EB-5 Green Card: Critical Knowledge For Investors Who Want To Make The Best Decisions For Themselves And Their Families

If you are seeking permanent residence status in the U.S., request a free copy of Complete Guide To The EB-5 Green Card to learn about the EB-5 visa program.

View Details