Russia Investors for EB-5 VisaThe EB-5 Visa for Russia investors is an immigrant visa that allows applicants and their dependents to obtain permanent residency in the United States through investment. The EB-5 Visa for Russian investors requires a minimum investment that generates at least 10 full-time jobs for American citizens. Obtaining permanent residence through EB5 allows Russian citizens to live, study, and work indefinitely in the United States. Russia investors and their dependents are able to travel anywhere in the USA as well as enjoy visa-free travel to numerous countries as permanent residents. Children of Russia investors enjoy lower tuition fees and educational assistance in the US as EB 5 Visa dependents. 

There is no backlog in the application process for EB-5 Visa for Russia investors and certain investors already present in the USA can take advantage of the concurrent filing of their petitions. The lack of extensive delays in the processing of the EB 5 Visa for Russian investors is promising for the increasing popularity of the EB-5 Program for Russia investors.

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What is EB-5 Visa for Russia Investors?

The EB-5 Visa for Russia investors is an immigrant visa that grants a U.S. Permanent Residence (Green Card) to applicants who can invest a minimum amount in a U.S. business. The EB-5 Visa for Russia investors allows for an initial 2-year Conditional Permanent Residence (Green Card) that enables applicants and their families to live and work without restrictions in the US. The Russian investor’s investment in the new commercial enterprise (NCE) has to create at least 10 full-time jobs for U.S. citizens.

What are the Benefits of EB-5 Visa for Russian Investors?

EB-5 Russian investors and their dependents obtain the following benefits from the Immigrant Investor Visa Program.

  • U.S. permanent residency. Russian investors, their spouses, and unmarried children under 21 obtain the right to live, work, and travel anywhere in the US where the political and economic situations are more stable. 
  • U.S. investment opportunities. The US has a stable EB-5 market for Russian investors who want to have the same rights as Lawful Permanent Residents (LPRs) in terms of economic ventures and business control in the US.
  • U.S. education. Russian parents are able to send their children to the best educational institutions in the US. These are the benefits enjoyed by minor children of Russian investors as dependents of the EB5 Visa.
    • Study in some of the best institutions in the world without facing restrictions imposed on foreign students.
    • Pay 150% to 300% lower tuition fees as compared to foreign students.
    • Enjoy more funding and scholarship options as compared to foreign students.
    • Study as a day scholar and avoid long separation from family just to obtain a quality education.
    • Explore job opportunities without worrying about issues like work permits, sponsorship, processing delays, expiry of visa, or restrictions on job mobility. 
  • Russian investors enjoy greater international mobility through the visa-free travel privileges available to US Green Card holders.

What are the Risks of EB-5 Visa for Russian Investors?

These are the risks involved in an application for an EB-5 Visa for Russian investors.

  • Investment risk. There is no guarantee that Russian investors will get their money back or that a huge return on investment will result from the EB5 Project. The main benefit of the EB 5 for Russian investors is the ability to obtain a U.S. Green Card for themselves and their qualified dependents.
  • Immigration risk. The act of investing in a U.S. enterprise does not automatically result in a U.S. Green Card. The Russian investor needs to prove the continuous fulfillment of all the requirements of the EB5 Visa within the 2-year Conditional Residency to be eligible for a 10-year Lawful Permanent Residence (LPR).
  • Fraud risk. Firms or individuals can claim to be migration brokers or immigration consultants that are involved with the EB5 Program. The Russian investor should conduct due diligence on the EB5 Project, the developer, and third-party entities to ensure that all is in order and in compliance with the standards of the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS). 

How Long Does it Take to Process an EB 5 Visa for Russia  Investors?

The average processing time for the initial EB-5 petition for Russian investors is between 29.5 to 61 months. The application for an EB 5 Visa for Russia investors begins with the filing of the Immigrant Petition by Standalone Investor (Form I-526). 

How Long is an EB5 Visa Valid for Russia Investors?

Russia investors and their dependents obtain an initial 2-year Conditional Green Card after a successful EB5 application. The Russia investor must file a petition to remove the conditions on his/her EB5 Green Card to obtain LPR status in the US, valid for 10 years. 

What are the Requirements for an EB-5 Visa for Russian Investors?

These are the main requirements for an EB-5 Visa for Russian investors.

  • Investment amount. The investment must be “at risk” to qualify for an EB5 Visa for Russian investors and can be any of the following. 
    • A minimum investment of $800,000 USD (58.4 M Russian Ruble) for a Targeted Employment Area (TEA). A Targeted Employment Area (TEA) is a region with high unemployment rates or a rural area. 
    • An investment of $1.05 million USD (76.6 M Russian Ruble) for a non-TEA. 
  • Source of funds. Russian investors can use any of the following as EB5 funds along with sufficient documentation of their lawful sources.
    • Inheritance
    • Business profits
    • Loans from a financial institution or from an individual
    • Salaries/wages
    • Gifts from an individual
  • Job creation. The EB5 Visa for Russian investors requires the creation of at least 10 full-time jobs for American citizens from the EB 5 investment project.

The financial criteria for the EB-5 Visa for Russian investors are the following.

  • Net worth of $1,050,000 (76.6 M Russian Ruble) for an individual or married couple; or
  • Minimum of $200,000 (14.6 M Russian Ruble) in individual income in each of the 2 previous years; or
  • Minimum of $300,000 (21.9 M Russian Ruble) in joint income in each of the 2 previous years; and
  • Comparable level of future income and assets.

What is the Age Requirement for Russia Investors to Get EB-5 Visa?

There’s no age limit for the EB-5 Visa. Any Russia investor qualifies to be an EB-5 investor. However, since a minor probably does not have the assets or income to be eligible as an EB-5 investor on his/her own, the parents or some other guardian giving him/her the investment amount requires showing the necessary documents to prove the source of funds. Occasionally, a Russian investor pursuing an EB-5 Visa will be unable to get specific documentation. In such instances, the applicant should file a declaration giving an explanation as to why they are unable to supply the needed documentation.

The only time age matters is if the parent is applying and children are also part of the application as derivatives. The children must be under the age of 21 to be included in a parent’s application.

How Much Does an EB-5 Visa Cost for Russia Investors?

These are the standard costs of an EB 5 Visa for Russia investors.

  • EB-5 investment
    • $800,000 (58.4 M RUB) for a TEA investment
    • $1,050,000 (745 K RUB) for a non-TEA investment
  • Form I-526- $3,675 (268 K RUB)
  • Application to Register Permanent Residence or Adjust Status (Form I-485)- $1,140 (83 K RUB)
  • Petition by Investor to Remove Conditions on Permanent Resident Status (Form I-829)- $3,750 (273 K RUB)
  • The U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) issues 10,000 EB-5 Visas a year.

The Central Bank of Russian Federation (CBR) is the regulatory body that has framework and monetary policy for moving assets and money outside of Russia.

How can I Transfer EB-5 Funds from Russia?

The banking sanctions on Russia stemming from the invasion of Ukraine restrict the ability of Russian investors to transfer their money to the United States. Select Russian banks have been prohibited from using the Society for Worldwide Interbank Financial Telecommunications (SWIFT) for international transactions. Russian investors with businesses outside of the country can look into using their profits as EB-5 funds. Certain Russia investors may need to obtain clearance from the Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC) prior to investing in the EB5 Program. Russian investors should consult an experienced EB5 Attorney to discuss possible ways to transfer money out of Bangladesh. 

What is the Priority Date for EB5 Visa for Russian Investors?

The EB5 Visa priority date is the date when the Russian investor’s Form I-526 is properly filed and received by the USCIS. The EB5 priority date indicates the Russia investor’s position in the immigrant visa waiting line. The U.S. Department of State (DOS) Visa Bulletin showing the final action dates for an EB5 Visa is released every month. The priority date is “current” once the final action date of the EB-5 Visa category matches the I-526 priority date. The EB5 Visa for Russia investors is on “current” status meaning no retrogression (backlog) exists in the application process. 

How Long Does it Take to Acquire an I-526 Approval for the Russian Investor under EB 5?

The adjudication of an I-526 petition for Russian investors is between 29.5 to 61 months. The USCIS decides on all I-526 petitions and the processing time depends on the nature of the case and the service center processing the application. 

How can a Russia Citizen Immigrate to the United States Using the EB-5 Program?

The EB5 process of immigration for Russia investors involves 6 steps.

  1. Petitioning for an EB-5 Visa. Filing of the I-526 petition with the USCIS.
  2. Applying for an EB5 Visa. USCIS must approve the Russian investor’s I-526 form prior to applying for the EB5 Visa.
    1. Applying from overseas. Filing the Online Immigrant Visa and Alien Registration Application (Form DS-260) with the U.S. Department of State (DOS).
    2. Applying within the US. Filing for an adjustment of status using Form I-485 with USCIS. Russia investors present in the USA holding valid nonimmigrant visas such as H-1B, F-1, and L-1 are eligible for concurrent filing of their I-526 and I-485 petitions.
  3. Issuing of EB-5 Visa
  4. Obtaining conditional permanent residence. A Conditional Green Card grants Russian investors and their dependents the same rights as LPRs for an initial period of 2 years.
  5. Removing conditions on permanent residence. The I-829 petition is submitted to USCIS within the 90-day period prior to the second anniversary as a Russian EB5 investor in the US.
  6. Gaining lawful permanent residence. An Unconditional Green Card is valid for 10 years and renewable unlimitedly. 

What is the EB-5 Visa Statistics for Russia Investors?

There were 8 EB 5 Visas released to Russian investors in FY 2024 according to the Report of the Visa Office from 2024 of the U.S. Department of State (DOS). 

What are the Challenges for Russia Investors for EB-5?

One of the key challenges that Russia investors face when applying for the EB5 Visa is their ability to meet the minimum investment requirements in face of international monetary restrictions on Russian banks. In addition to supplying a minimum capital, the EB-5 investment must be proven to come from lawful sources. Another challenge for Russian investors is the suspension of non-diplomatic visa services in the U.S. Embassy in Moscow in recent months. The suspension makes the process more difficult for overseas Russian EB 5 applicants. Wealthy Russians, especially those with close connections to the Russian government, face stricter scrutiny when it comes to their EB5 petitions. Russia investors should work with competent EB-5 Visa Attorneys in order to overcome these challenges and develop effective strategies to make them eligible for the EB 5 Visa. 

What is the Best Project to Invest in with an EB-5 Visa for Russia  Investors?

EB-5 Projects are U.S. commercial enterprises funded by immigrant investors. These EB5 Projects must contribute to economic growth by generating jobs for U.S. workers. The best EB-5 Projects for Russia investors include hotel construction, real estate, and restaurant industries. These EB-5 Projects have consistent demand and generate more than enough jobs for Russia investors to meet the minimum job creation requirement.

What Does the Future Hold for EB-5 Investors from Russia?

Russian investors do not face retrogression (backlog) in the application for EB-5 Visa. The “current” status of EB 5 Visa for Russia investors remains a positive factor in spite of imposed restrictions for Russian citizens interested in investing in the EB5 Visa Program. 

What are the Other US Visa Available for Russia Nationals?

Immigrant and nonimmigrant visas are available to Russia nationals who want to enter the United States based on individual purposes. Immigrant Visas allow foreign nationals to enter the USA as permanent residents. Nonimmigrant Visas are granted for a transient stay in the US and require holders to return to their home country. Russia nationals are advised to apply for non-diplomatic U.S. Visas at the U.S. Embassy in Warsaw since the suspension of non-diplomatic visa services in the U.S. Embassy in Moscow. 

The following are the US Visas available to Russian nationals.

 Immigrant Visas

  • Family-Based Immigration. For foreign citizens sponsored by an immediate relative who is a U.S. citizen or a U.S. Green Card holder and is at least 21 years old.
  • Fiancé(e) K-1 nonimmigrant visa. For a foreign fiancé(e) of a US citizen. The foreign fiancé(e) is allowed to stay in the U.S. to apply for permanent residency after marriage.
  • K-3 Visa. For the foreign spouse of a U.S. citizen traveling to reside in the U.S. while awaiting final completion of their immigration. The spouse’s children can enter the U.S. with a K-4 Visa.
  • Diversity Visa. For foreign citizens from countries with low rates of immigration to the USA. Russia qualifies for the Diversity Visa Program for 2024.
  • Employment-Based Immigration. For qualified applicants under the provisions of US immigration law. The EB-5 Visa falls under the Employment Fifth Preference (E5). 

Nonimmigrant Visas

  • B-1/B-2 Visitor Visa. For people traveling to the US for business or pleasure, or for medical treatment. 
  • Temporary Worker/Employment or Trainees (H, L, O, P, Q, R). For temporary, nonimmigrant workers petitioned by US employers or agents.
  • Student Visa. For foreign citizens who wish to study in the US.
  • Exchange Visitor Visa. For foreign citizens participating in exchange programs.
  • Journalist and Media Visa. For representatives of the foreign media traveling to the US to engage in their profession while having their home office in a foreign country.
  • A Visas. For Russian government officials entering the U.S. for temporary or permanent assignment.
  • Transit/Ship Crew Visa. For foreign citizens traveling in immediate and continuous transit through the US en route to a foreign destination.

What is the Most Popular State in the United States for Russia  Investors to Migrate to?

The top U.S. states with the most Russian migrants are New York, New Jersey, Alaska, and Maryland.

What is the Current Retrogression Situation for Russian Investors?

There is no retrogression in the EB 5 application for Russian investors. Eligible Russian investors are able to obtain their EB5 Visas faster compared to applicants from backlogged countries such as India and China.

What are the Issues Experienced by the Russia Citizen with the EB-5 Visa?

A common issue with the EB 5 Visa application for Russia investors is meeting the minimum investment amount for the EB 5 project. Investors from Russia have been limited in their options for transferring investment funds to the USA due to bank sanctions. Another issue experienced by Russia investors outside the US is the restriction on non-diplomatic visa applications in the U.S. Embassy in Moscow. Overseas Russian investors must apply for an immigrant visa in the U.S. Embassy in Warsaw. 

What is a Targeted Employment Area?

A targeted employment area (TEA) is a region in the United States where the required minimum EB5 investment is $800,000 (58.4 M Russian Ruble). The 2 kinds of TEAs are high-unemployment areas and rural areas. Russian investors benefit from investing in a TEA Project because of the priority processing for their petitions and an allotment of reserved visas under the 2022 EB-5 Reform and Integrity Act (RIA). The priority processing and visa set-asides quicken the process of obtaining a Green Card through EB-5. 

What Other Countries can Invest in the EB-5 Visa Program?

There were nearly 100,000 foreign investors who obtained permanent residence in the United States via the EB-5 Program from 2012 to 2022 according to “The United States EB-5 Program” by Investment Migration Insider. About 80% of EB5 investors come from South Korea, Taiwan, China, and the United Kingdom. 

Is USA a Good Foreign Market to Invest in for Russia Citizens?

Yes, the United States has a stable economic environment for Russian investors. The United States gives access to one of the largest consumer marketplaces in the world, a strong legal system, tax advantages, and reliable infrastructure. Select Russian investors may need to obtain prior permission from the Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC) before making investments in the USA.

Can EB-5 Visa Attorney Speed Up the Process of EB-5 Visa?

No, an EB-5 Visa Attorney does not speed up an EB 5 Visa application for Russian investors. The approval and processing of the EB 5 Visa are under the jurisdictions of the USCIS and the DOS. An EB5 Visa Attorney assists Russian investors by preventing delays from processing errors, organizing their paperwork for success, and ensuring compliance with U.S. immigration laws.

Is Obtaining an EB-5 Easy for Russian Investors?

Russia investors are able to obtain their EB-5 Visas faster because of the “current” visa bulletin and lack of retrogression in the application for Russians. Russian investors do not face additional wait times, unlike investors from backlogged countries.

Can a Russian National Apply for EB 5 while on H1B?

Yes, a Russian citizen with a valid H-1B Visa is qualified to apply for the EB5 Visa. The H1B Visa is for foreign professionals in specialty occupations hired by US employers. Russian citizens on H-1B Visa in the USA can file their I-526 and I-485 concurrently as per the Reform and Integrity Act (RIA).

Can a Russia Investor Borrow Money for EB-5 Visa?

Yes, Russia investors are allowed to borrow money and obtain loans for their EB-5 Visa application. The EB5 Loan has to be secured by the personal assets and collateral of the Russia investor and not those of the EB-5 project. 

Can an International Student from Russia with an F-1 Visa Apply for EB5 Visa?

Yes, a student from Russia on F-1 Visa is eligible for the EB-5 Visa. The F1 Visa is a nonimmigrant visa that allows foreign students to engage in academic studies in the US. The Russian student on a valid F1 status can file the I-526 and I-485 petitions concurrently for faster EB 5 Visa processing in the USA. 

Can a Russia  Citizen Invest in the United States?

Yes, a Russian citizen is able to invest in the United States through the EB5 Visa and indirectly through the E-2 Visa. The E-2 Treaty Investor Visa is a nonimmigrant visa that allows nationals of treaty countries to invest in a US business. Russia does not have an existing treaty with the U.S. and investors must first obtain citizenship from a treaty country to apply for the E2 Visa. 

The E-2 Treaty Investor Visa does directly lead to US Permanent Residency, unlike the EB-5 Visa. A substantial investment of at least $150,000 (10.9 M Russian Ruble) is required for an E-2 Visa investment. There is no requirement for minimum job creation for E2 Visa investors. 

Does a Russia Citizen Need a Visa for USA?

Russians must obtain a U.S. Visa prior to entering the United States for both immigrant and nonimmigrant purposes. Russia citizens generally have to apply for a US Visa in a US Embassy or Consulate where they are granted an appointment.