EB-5 Visa

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What is an EB-5 Immigrant Investor Visa ?

The fifth employment-based visa preference category, created by Congress in 1990, is available to immigrants seeking to enter the United States to invest in a new commercial enterprise that will benefit the U.S. economy and create at least 10 full-time jobs. There are two ways to invest under the EB-5 visa category –

  1. Creating a new commercial enterprise, or
  2. Investing in a troubled business.

Eligibility Criteria

New Business Enterprise

To qualify, the beneficiary must:

  1. Invest or be in the process of investing at least $1,000,000. If the investment is in a designated targeted employment area (discussed further below), the minimum investment requirement is $500,000.
  2. Benefit the U.S. economy by providing goods or services to U.S. markets.
  3. Create full-time employment for at least 10 U.S. workers. This includes U.S. citizens, Green Card holders (lawful permanent residents), and other individuals lawfully authorized to work in the U.S. (however, it does not include the immigrant or spouse, sons, or daughters).
  4. Be involved in the day-to-day management of the new business or directly manage it through formulating business policy – for example, as a corporate officer or board member.

A targeted Employment Area is defined by law as “a rural area or an area that has experienced high unemployment of at least 150 percent of the national average.” For further detail, click on the Laws section of this website and access section 203(b)(5)(B) of the Immigration Nationality Act (INA).

Troubled Business

To qualify, the beneficiary must:

  1. Invest in a business that has existed for at least two years.
  2. Invest in a business that had incurred a net loss, based on generally accepted accounting principles, for the 12 to 24 month period before the beneficiary filed Form I-526 Immigrant Petition by the prospective entrepreneur.
  3. The loss for the 12 to 24 month period must be at least equal to 20 percent of the business’s net worth before the loss.
  4. Maintain the number of jobs at no less than the pre-investment level for a period of at least two years.
  5. Be involved in the day-to-day management of the troubled business or directly manage it through formulating business policy, for example, as a corporate officer or board member.
  6. The same investment requirements of the new commercial enterprise investment apply to troubled business investment ($1,000,000 or $500,000 in a targeted employment area).

Regional Center Pilot Program

To qualify, the beneficiary must:

  1. Invest at least $1,000,000 or $500,000 in a regional center affiliated with a new commercial enterprise or a troubled business located within the area of the USCIS designated Regional Center. Regional Centers are defined and discussed further below.
  2. Create at least 10 new full-time jobs either directly through capital investment.

A Regional Center is defined as any economic unit, public or private, which is involved in promoting economic growth, improved regional productivity, job creation, and increased domestic capital investment.

The organizers of a regional center seeking the regional center designation from USCIS must submit a proposal showing:

  1. How the regional center plans to focus on a geographical region within the U.S. and must explain how the regional center will achieve the required economic growth within this regional area
  2. That the regional center’s business plan can be relied upon as a viable business model grounded in reasonable and credible estimates and assumptions for market conditions, project costs, and activity timelines
  3. How in verifiable detail (using economic models in some instances) jobs will be created directly or indirectly through capital investments made in accordance with the regional center’s business plan.

The amount and source of capital committed to the project and the promotional efforts made and planned for the business project.

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Other Type Of Green Card

How To Apply an EB-5 Immigrant Investor Visa ?

The visa application process for the investors involves –

  1. Filing of Form I-526, Immigrant Petition by prospective Investor.
  2. After the USCIS approves Form I-526 petition, either:
    • File DS-260, Application for Immigrant Visa and Registration, with the U.S. Department of State to obtain an EB-5 visa abroad to seek admission to the United States; or
    • File Form I-485, Application to Register Permanent Residence or Adjust status, with USCIS to adjust status to a conditional permanent resident within the United States. Once USCIS approves the Form I-485 application, or upon admission into the United States with an EB-5 immigrant visa, USCIS will grant conditional permanent residence to the EB-5 Investor and derivative family members for two years.
  3. Filing of Form I-829, Petition by Investor to Remove Conditions on Permanent Resident Status, within the 90-day period immediately before the second anniversary of admission to the United States as a conditional permanent resident.


The beneficiary’s spouse and unmarried children under 21 may be admitted to the U.S. with a two-year conditional period. If the I-829 petition to remove conditions is approved, the conditions will be removed from spouse and children’s Green Card status. As a lawful permanent resident (Green Card holder), spouse and children will be authorized to work or attend school in the U.S.

Do you need an EB-5 Immigrant Investor Visa USA you can trust to help you? Call the New York immigration attorneys The Law Offices of Prashanthi Reddy, PLLC, at (212) 354-1010 or mail us at prashanthi@reddyesq.com.


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