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EB-5 Law & Related U.S. Law

FAQs on EB-5 law and related immigration law

[Q] Are there some disadvantages in investing in either TEA or Rural Area EB-5 project vs. regular $1 Million project?

Not at all. Since under the EB-5 law, an EB-5 project located in the Targeted Employment Area (TEA) or Rural Area (RA) legally requires only $500,000 rather than the $1 Million USD required in the regular EB-5 project, there are no advantages and disadvantages resulting from the investment amount.

[Q] Can I invest in EB-5 Program through my company instead of in my individual name?

No, EB-5 law does not allow corporations or companies to apply because permanent status can only be given to individuals. Also, the money cannot come from a corporation or company, even though the individual may be the 100% shareholder in the company.

[Q] If I abandon or get taken away my conditional green card status, then what happens to my dependent family members?

[Q] During the conditional resident status, if I, the principal applicant/investor give up or get taken away such conditional resident status by USCIS/CBP, does this affect the same conditional resident status of my dependent family members?

If you are the principal investor and applicant, and then you abandon or get taken away your conditional green card status during the CPR period, then your dependents will also be deemed to have lost their conditional green cards.

[Q] How does U.S. EB-5 law differ in basic points from the Canada investor program?

The Canadian Investor Program does not require job-creation, and either the federal program or the regional government guarantees the return of the investment, so there is less risk. However, the Canadian Investor Program requires previous management experience and additional eligibilities of the applicant and takes longer to immigrate under than the U.S. counterpart.

[Q] What is Rural Area in context of EB-5 law?

The significance of an EB-5 project being located in a Rural Area is that the required investment amount is only $500,000 USD, not $1 Million USD. Therefore, if a particular EB-5 project is located in either TEA or Rural Area (RA), then the required investment amount is only $500,000 USD.

[Q] What is a Targeted Employment Area (TEA) concept?

It's refers to either a rural area or a geographical area that has experienced unemployment rate of at least 150% of the national average unemployment rate. Of the 10,000 immigrant visas available for investors, 3,000 are set aside for TEA EB-5 cases. In the regulations, TEA is defined as:

[Q] Does I-526 have to be submitted before a child turns 21 years of age?

[Q] I heard it's important to submit I-526 immigrant petition before one's child turns 21 years of age. Why is that?

That is true only where the subject child wishes to immigrate as a dependent child of the principal alien investor. However, if the child wishes to apply as the principal alien investor, then it does not matter whether the child exceeds 21 years of age.

[Q] What does "EB-5" stand for exactly?

It stands for Employment-based 5th category. Under the U.S. immigration law, there are five different categories of immigrating through employment-based avenues, and since EB-5 deals with employment-creation, it's been designated as the 5th category of Employment-based methods of immigrating. EB-5 is also commonly referred to as Investor Green Card or Investment Green Card.

[Q] Does EB-5 allow an investor to individually invest in a non-profit organization entity?

No, under the EB-5 law, an individual investor can individually invest in only for-profit entity, such as a for-profit limited partnership entity.

[Q] Does EB-5 law require that the principal applicant and/or family members reside in the geographic area of the project?

[Q] Does EB-5 law require that the investor and/or family members live close to where the EB-5 project is located?

The answer depends on whether the investor has participated in a Regional Center project or Direct Individual EB-5 case. Although there is no specific legal provision on point, it is understood that for Regional Center project, an investor (who acts as a limited partner in a Limited Partnership) or his family members do not need to live in the same area of the Regional Center EB-5 project.

[Q] Where can you go to learn the basics of EB-5 law and requirements?

You can go to the "Easy as EB-5" section in this site, which has been specifically created for laymen who wish to obtain solid understanding of EB-5 law and requirements. You can click:

[Q] What are the types of EB-5 projects that can result from a combination or interplay of Regional Center and TEA concepts?

[Q] I know Regional Center and Targeted Employment Area (TEA) concepts are separate and different concepts. What types of EB-5 projects can result from an interplay between these two concepts?

Yes, Regional Center and Targeted Employment Area (or Rural Area) are two different concepts. The following four types can result from an interplay between these two concepts:

1. Regional Center and TEA/RA project -- that is a project in which 10 positions can be created indirectly and also requires only $500,000 USD investment instead of $1 Million USD investment.

[Q] What are some of reasons why regular, direct EB-5 case might have a hard time meeting the 10 job-creation requirement?

[Q] I heard often that practically speaking, a regular, direct investment EB-5 case may have a difficult time meeting the 10 full-time direct job-creation requirement. Is this true, and if yes, what are some of the reasons?

Practically speaking, it is often true, for the following reasons:

1. Direct EB-5 case requires the creation of requisite jobs directly. This means the business has to create ten new (not existing) jobs directly. This is easier said than done.

2. Often, businesses set up are very sensitive to economy, and enough positions may not be created.

[Q] Can another regional center be designated within the same or overlapping geographic region?

Yes, in theory and practice. For example, there are several EB-5 Programs in Washington state and Washington, DC geographic areas. For example, in NY, CA and Florida, there are many regional centers doing similar types of projects in the same regions.

[Q] Is a provision promising the return of the fund in the event of I-829 denial legal under EB-5 law?

[Q] If the project offering documents or the project Limited Partnership includes a provision which states that the fund will be returned in the event of I-829 denial, is this allowed under EB-5 law?

No, USCIS recently made it clear through an official statement that this kind of arrangement will not be allowed. The released statement reads: