8 Advantages of an EB-5 VisaThe EB-5 Visa is an immigration visa that allows foreign investors to apply for a green card along with their spouses and children under 21 years of age, following a set of conditions. The conditions include a minimum capital investment of $800,000 and creating a new business entity. The new business entity must be located in a targeted employment area and must employ 10 U.S. workers in full-time positions.

Many benefits accompany an EB5 Visa, both for the investor and the United States. Here are 8 benefits of the EB 5 Visa and their definitions.

  1. Create jobs. The new business enterprise must, directly or indirectly, generate 10 full-time jobs for U.S. citizens.
  2. Stimulates the economy. The Visa EB-5 was originally created to encourage U.S. regional economic growth through direct foreign investment.
  3. Acquire legal status in the U.S. The EB5 Visa enables offshore investors and their families to live, work, and study in any U.S. states or regions.
  4. Quick process to permanent residency or citizenship. The Visa EB 5 Program is the fastest route to obtaining U.S. permanent resident status or citizenship.
  5. Does not require a sponsor. The EB-5 Visa USA does not require investors to have sponsors to apply.
  6. Obtain a financial return on your investment. The investment must be “at risk” but can be guaranteed by the investor’s assets to mitigate potential losses.
  7. Live and work anywhere in the U.S. The investors, their spouses and dependent children under 21 years of age can live, work, and study anywhere in the U.S.
  8. Children’s educational and employment opportunities. An investor’s children have access to top schools in the United School with an EB5 Visa.

1. Job Creation

Job creation means that the new business entity must create at least 10 full-time positions for qualified employees in the United States. A qualified employee is a person with legal authorization to work in the U.S., such as those who have attained permanent residence and citizenship status. People living as conditional residents, asylees, refugees, or under suspension of deportation are qualified employees. The investor and his or her family are not considered qualified employees. This requirement of the EB5 Visa Program allows for numerous employment opportunities for people in the U.S.

2. Economic Stimulation

The creation of the EB5 Visa was primarily intended to boost U.S. regional economic growth via direct foreign investment. The US benefited from a total of $20.6 billion from EB 5 Visa investors, according to Invest in the USA (IIUSA) from 2008 up until 2015. The EB-5 Visa funded and maintained American jobs without any additional cost to the taxpayers during that period. The EB5 Visa has generated $37 billion in investments and created more than 820,000 jobs since 2008. Here are 4 examples of projects that were established through the EB 5 Visa program.

  1. The PA Turnpike/I-95 Interchange in Pennsylvania began in 2010.
  2. The Jefferson Energy Terminal in Texas has operated since 2012.
  3. The John R. Oishei Children’s Hospital in New York opened in 2017.
  4. The San Francisco Shipyard and Candlestick Redevelopment in California began their construction in 2015.

3. Legal Status in the U.S.

The EB-5 Visa allows foreign investors, their spouses, and children below 21  years old to legally stay, work, and study anywhere in the United States. Most holders of the EB5 Visa aim to gain permanent residence and citizenship in the U.S.

There are 3 steps to obtaining legal status in the U.S. through the EB 5 Visa.

  1. Consult an immigration lawyer about his or her eligibility for the EB-5 Program. An immigration lawyer can help the applicant determine a suitable EB-5 investment project. A credible business plan and the monetary investment necessary to fund this business must be accomplished.
  2. File Form I-526 (Immigrant Petition by Alien Entrepreneur). The Immigration Attorney will file Form I-526 on behalf of the investor. This petition will show that the investment is in the process or the required minimum capital has already been invested in a qualified EB 5 project. 
  3. Apply for a green card. The applicant, together with his or her family, can now apply for a green card after the I-526 approval. Three months before the two-year conditional residency is up, they will apply to remove the two-year conditional status by filing Form I-829 Petition by Entrepreneur to Remove Conditions on Permanent Resident Status. Once Form I-829 is approved, you will be an unconditional permanent resident. 

4. Quick Process to Permanent Residency and Citizenship

The EB-5 Visa Program provides a quick way to gain permanent residence and citizenship for the applicant, his or her spouse, and children under the age of 21. Listed below is the process for obtaining permanent U.S. residency and citizenship.

  1. File the conditional green card via Form I-485 (Application to Register Permanent Residence or Adjust Status)
  2. Submit Form I-829 (Petition to Remove Conditions) after 21 months of being a conditional permanent resident. Approval of this form gives you an unconditional green card.
  3. Apply for citizenship or naturalization. You can apply for naturalization or citizenship after becoming an unconditional permanent resident for 5 years.

5. Visa Sponsorship is Not Required

The EB5 Visa Program does not require outside sponsorship to stay in the US. An investor simply needs to meet the requirements of the EB 5 Program to be eligible.

6. Financial Return on Investment

The specifics of the investment project will determine the rate of return in full. The return on investment cannot be guaranteed with the EB-5 Visa. Loan-based investments may return 1-2 percent to the applicant, while returns for equity investments will depend on the company’s viability. 

7. Live and Work Anywhere in the U.S.

The investor, their spouse, and dependent children under 21 can freely live and travel anywhere around the US after obtaining a conditional green card. A regional center investment allows the EB5 Visa investor to reside outside the state where the investment is located. A direct investment requires the investor to live near his or her business.

8. Children’s Educational and Employment Opportunities

The children of EB-5 Visa investors enjoy the same educational opportunities as American citizens. They have access to the best schools, colleges, and training. They have access to the same job market as U.S. citizens and can take full advantage of work benefits.

What is EB-5 Visa?

The EB5 Visa was developed by the U.S. Congress in line with the Immigration Act of 1990 to encourage foreign investors to boost the economy of the United States. The EB-5 Visa lets foreign investors, their spouses, and children under 21 acquire a green card after meeting the EB 5 requirements. The investor can apply for conditional permanent residence status after approval from the USCIS. The EB-5 Visa leads to unconditional permanent resident status and eventually U.S. citizenship.

How does EB-5 Visa work?

The EB5 program enables foreign investors, their spouses, and children under 21 years of age to apply for the EB-5 Visa through investment. The minimum investment required is $800,000 to establish a new commercial enterprise in a TEA. The new enterprise must create 10 full-time jobs for qualified American citizens. The investment can be a direct investment or a regional center investment. 

There are six steps in the EB-5 Process. First, select an immigration lawyer and an investment advisor. An immigration attorney assists throughout the immigration process while an investment advisor helps choose the right EB5 project. Second, choose an EB-5 project that fits the standards of the EB 5 Visa program. This step is crucial and would need the assistance of an investment advisor. It is necessary to choose a project that conforms to the EB-5 Visa program standards. Third, file Form I-526 with the USCIS. This form indicates that funds have already been invested or are in the process of investing the specified amount in an EB-5 project. Fourth, apply for Adjustment of Status (form I-485 and form DS-260) to become a conditional permanent resident. The investor and his or her dependents must submit an I-485 petition. The DS-260 application enables an investor and their dependents to begin their conditional EB-5 visa green card residency. Fifth, get a conditional Green Card for two years. A conditional green card allows the investor to live and work in the United States, but it is only for two years before they are required to renew status to a full, ten-year green card. Green Cards with conditions cannot be renewed. Lastly, apply for a permanent residency and file the I-829 form. The Form I-829 petition is the last step for investors to become lawful permanent residents of the U.S. It includes proof that the investor has met all USCIS requirements). The investor’s conditional residency restriction is lifted once the I-829 is accepted. Thus, the investor, his or her spouse, and unmarried children under the age of 21 can live permanently in the U.S.

You should receive your EB5 visa in a week after passing the interview. This process takes 6 to 8 months. You become a conditional permanent resident for two years after your Adjustment of Status is authorized or you enter the US with a valid EB5 visa.

The investor can file the above forms, but the EB-5 Greencard Process will be easier if an immigration attorney files these on their behalf.

How much does an EB-5 cost?

The minimum capital investment is the most important component of the EB-5 Visa application. This amount must then be invested in a new business entity in a targeted employment area (TEA) and must produce 10 full-time jobs for American workers. Aside from the investment amount, the EB5 Visa Cost has 5 components, including the investment amount, listed below.

  • Investment amount: $800,000 or $1.05 million.
  • Form I-526 application is $3,675.
  • Form I-485 application is $1,140.
  • Form I-829 application is $3,750.
  • Cost of an Immigration Attorney

What are the requirements for an EB-5 Visa?

There are 3 main requirements for the EB-5 Visa; these are: first, minimum capital investment; second, establish a new business, and third, create 10 full-time jobs. The definitions and conditions of these 3 main requirements are listed below.

  1. Invest a minimum amount: Investors must be able to invest a minimum amount of $800,000 or $1,050,000 via direct investment or regional center investment.
  2. Establish a new business:  Investors must establish a new business entity using the minimum amount. The new business must be located in a targeted employment area.
  3. Create jobs. The business must, directly or indirectly, create 10 full-time jobs for qualified U.S. citizens. 

All these EB5 Visa Requirements must be met by the investor to be eligible for the EB-5 Visa Program. 

Who can apply for an EB-5 Visa?

The EB-5 Visa Program does not ask for educational, special skills, or language requirements. An investor can apply if he or she can meet the minimum capital of $800,000 for a TEA or $1.05 million for a non-TEA. This investment must generate at least 10 full-time jobs for Americans either through direct investment or through a regional center. Direct investments require the applicant to actively manage the business and the direct jobs. Investments made via regional centers create direct, indirect, and induced jobs. Regional center investments do not require the applicant to be directly involved in the business.