Investor VISA Program
The Immigration Act of 1990 “Investor VISA Program”, created a program permitting foreign investors to obtain permanent residency in the United States. This program is aimed at generating a significant inward flow of foreign capital and creating jobs for the United States. The legislation made permanent residency available nationwide each year for qualified immigrant investors, requiring:
- investment of $1 million, except in rural and high unemployment areas where a lowered investment of $500,000 may be made.
- must create full-time employment for at least ten United States citizens or other legal residents-other than members of the investor’s family-for a period of two years.
Given the positive impact of this program in creating economic development jobs in the United States, we strongly anticipate that the EB-5 Investment Visa will be viable in the future.
General EB-5 Program Overview
Background: Section 203 (b)(5) of the Immigration and Nationality Act (INA), allocates 10,000 “EB-5” immigrant visas per year to qualified individuals seeking Lawful Permanent Resident (LPR) status on the basis of their capital investment in a commercial enterprise which creates new employment.
- Foreign investors (non-U.S. residents) may be eligible for an immigrant visa under the EB-5 program if they have invested the required amount of capital into one of the following business types:
- A new commercial enterprise;
- An enterprise which will expand to 140% of pre-investment net worth or number of employees, or;
- A troubled business in which jobs will be preserved
Industries may include: Healthcare, Municipal Projects, Infrastructures, Manufacturing, Hospitality, Construction, etc.
The Regional Center Pilot Program Regulation
- The Immigrant Investor Pilot Program was created by Section 610 of Public Law 102-395 (October 6, 1992), and was recently extended through September 30, 2015
- EB-5 requirements for an investor under the Pilot Program are essentially the same as in the basic EB-5 investor program, except the Pilot Program provides for investments that are affiliated with an economic unit known as a “Regional Center”. These investments allow for a less restrictive job creation requirement based upon the creation of “INDIRECT” and “DIRECT” jobs
- Visit www.uscis.gov/eb-5centers for more information