The EB-5 visa, also known as the “Employment Creation” or “Investor” visa, allows for Lawful Permanent Resident (LPR) status for individuals who meet the following criteria:

  • Invest or are actively in the process of investing $1,050,000 (or $800,000 if the investment is in a “targeted employment area,” i.e. a rural area of less than 20,000 people or an area which has experienced high unemployment of at least 150% of the national average);
  • Investment must be in a new commercial enterprise, i.e. a company formed after November 29, 1990, although some exceptions apply;
  • The business must employ at least 10 U.S. citizen or authorized immigrant workers full-time; and
  • The applicant must engage in the business through day-to-day management or policy formation.

In addition, in October 1992 Congress established a pilot program that authorizes investment through regional centers and relaxes the job creation requirements so that jobs may be proven through direct or indirect employment. The authorized regional center projects include a good mix of those requiring a $500,000 investment and those requiring a $1,000,000 investment. The probability of achieving a successful outcome does not depend on whether you invest in a $500,000 project or a $1,000,000 project and it may very well be that investors are able to identify a $500,000 project that will satisfy their needs.

Conditional LPR Status for Immigrant Investors

A successful EB-5 applicant receives conditional LPR status, which is valid for a period of 2 years. To remove this conditional status, during the 90-day period prior to the expiration of the conditional LPR status, the investor must file a Petition for the Removal of Conditional Resident Status. The petition will be approved and the investor will be granted permanent LPR status if the investor successfully shows that they:

  1. invested or were actively investing the required capital and sustained the investment throughout the two-year period; and
  2. created or can be expected to create 10 full-time jobs for qualified employees within a reasonable time period.

To speak with an immigration attorney about EB-5 visas for investors contact Grossman Young & Hammond.