Under section 203(b)(5) of the Immigration and Nationality Act, 8 U.S.C. § 1153(b)(5), 10,000 immigrant visas per year are made available to certain qualified individuals seeking permanent resident status on the basis of their engagement in an investment within the United States.
The requirements for an investment based green card are an investment of at least $1 million dollars or $500,000 in an area with high unemployment. The petitioner must show that the money used for the investment comes from a lawful source and that it will create a minimum of 10 jobs. The investor can create a business in the United States or invest in an already established business. They can also invest through a government approved regional center.
A Regional Center is a private corporation or governmental agency with a targeted investment program within a specific geographic region. The EB-5 Regional Center Program does not require that the foreign investor themselves employ 10 U.S. workers. Instead, if 10 or more jobs will be created directly or indirectly as a result of the investment, it is enough. The Regional Center aids foreign investors by directing and managing their investment. USCIS estimates that over 90% of EB-5 green cards are obtained through this program.
The benefits of an EB-5 investment based green card are the petitioner can bring their immediate family, such as their spouse and children under 21 to the US with them. All of the family members receive a conditional green card, which allows them to work in the US and attend school. In most cases the children can attend US schools and Universities for the same cost resident’s would pay.
Generally, the petitioner will receive an initial approval within 6 months and will receive their conditional green card within 9 months to a year. After 2 years a petition to remove conditions from the green card needs to be filed to show that the jobs have been created and the investment has been made. 5 years after the petition is approved the applicant can apply for US citizenship.
For a free consultation regarding the requirements for an investment based green card please feel free to contact Nicklaus Misiti, Esq. at 212 537 4407 or fill out the form on his website www.misitiglobal.com. Nicklaus Misiti is Chief Attorney and C.E.O. of Misiti Global, PLLC a full service immigration law firm headquartered in New York City.