EB-5 Program Overview
EB-5 Visa Process
Process to Gain U.S. Permanent Residence Status as a Foreign Investor through EB-5 Investment
Step-By-Step Guide to the EB-5 Immigration Process with AGRC
Step 1: Complete and Sign Automated Subscription Booklet to Subscribe to Partnership
- Complete our automated Subscription Booklet and Escrow Acknowledgement then sign and return a digital or hard copy
- Once the Subscription Booklet is reviewed and approved, a countersigned copy of the Subscription Agreement will be sent to the investor
Step 2: Transfer Required Investment Funds
- Wire or transfer the Administrative Fee to the indicated EB-5 project investors partnership account.
- Wire or transfer the $800,000 EB-5 project investors partnership account.
Step 3: I-526E Petition Filing for Temporary Green Card Status
- Sign contract with Immigration Counsel to begin I-526E Petition preparation
- Submit Source-of-Funds Report to Immigration Counsel to be included in the I-526E Petition submission
- Immigration Counsel submits I-526E Petition to USCIS
- Please note, we can provide recommendations for immigration counsel if needed
Step 4: Consulate Interview or Adjustment of Status
- If investor resides outside of the U.S., a consulate interview will be scheduled
- If investor resides in the U.S. with a valid H-1B / E-2 / F-1 / TN visa, the investor’s immigration attorney will help adjust the visa status. An application for adjustment of status can be filed concurrently with the I-526E Petition.
- The investor receives conditional two-year green card (permanent residence)
Step 5: Submit I-829 Petition for Removal of Temporary Green Card Conditionss
- Three months before the conditional green card expires, the investor’s immigration attorney will submit the 1-829 petition to remove temporary conditions
- Once the I-829 petition is approved, the investor will receive a permanent green card
- Principal is repaid to each investor after the loan term expires
Am I Eligible?
How do I know if I’m eligible for EB-5?
If you meet the following conditions, an EB-5 investment may be the ideal choice for you:
- Long Time Horizon – It can take a significant amount of time to obtain residency through the EB-5 program
- Liquidity – You must have the means to pay for your investment, administrative fees, filing fees, and any professional fees such as legal fees. You must also have the ability to leave your money invested for approximately five years without the need to withdraw the funds
- Source of Funds – You must be able to provide documentation showing where you legally obtained your money
- Risk Tolerance – EB-5 investments have risks and you must have a certain risk tolerance to be eligible for such investments
- Suitability – Contact us to learn more about suitability requirements of EB-5 investments
If you are a foreign national with a desire to legally immigrate to the United States and have sufficient funds, the EB-5 Program offers you a simple and fast way to complete your immigration process. The program does have a few strict requirements, however.
Before starting the EB-5 process you will need to make sure that the funds you plan on investing are (i) personal funds that belong to you and (ii) are traceable to a legal source. Permitted sources of funds include salary, dividends, gifts from family or friends, etc. You will need to provide documentation showing the source of all funds, and you will also need to show that all appropriate taxes have been paid.
The entire EB-5 process may take several years to complete, but at the end of it, you will be a legal permanent resident of the United States. And while the time horizon may seem like a long time, it is substantially shorter than the time period that most other immigrants need to wait.
How to Invest In An EB-5 Project
How do I start the EB-5 visa investment process?
Getting Started with the EB-5 Visa Process: Your Investment
Obtaining permanent resident status using the EB-5 Program can be a lengthy and involved process. To get you off to a good start, we have compiled a list of the items you will need to have ready to start the process and the initial steps you need to take.
What you need as an EB-5 investor:
- Accredited investor status. Financial institutions, insurance companies, etc., are considered accredited investors. For an individual to have accredited investor status, he or she needs to have a net worth of at least $1,000,000 or an annual income of at least $200,000 for the past two years.
- $800,000 if investing in a targeted employment area (TEA) or in an infrastructure project administered by a government entity. All other projects require a minimum investment of $1,050,000.
- Documentation showing your source of funds. Your investment needs to be legally obtained from any of the following sources: salary from employment, dividends from a business, funds from an inheritance, gifts from family or friends, proceeds from the sale of real estate, and other legitimate sources.
- Money to pay processing fees, attorney fees, etc. These fees include your administrative fee plus additional processing fees. You should have this money available to you before beginning the process to avoid delays.
- A clean record. To be given permanent resident status, you will need to be able to pass a series of routine background checks. These checks will investigate your finances, any political involvement, and your criminal history to ensure eligibility for immigration to the United States. Patience. This is not an immediate process. United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) receives thousands of EB-5 petitions annually, and it takes time to review them individually. Generally, receiving conditional permanent resident status takes approximately 18–24 months, and removing the conditions on that status requires another two years. However, investors in rural TEA projects are given priority processing and conditional permanent resident status should be received faster as a result.
Steps to take in the EB-5 investment process:
- Contact us to schedule a meeting with one of our consultants to go over your situation. Complete suitability questionnaire and provide proof of accreditation status. This may include current financial statements and proof of income for the past two years.
- Select a project from among the available options and review the project documents. Discuss any questions or concerns you may have with a representative.
- Sign the necessary paperwork to commit to funding the selected EB-5 project. Transfer your investment ($800,000 or $1,050,000) into an escrow account. This will ensure that the investment funds are available when needed following the approval of your application.
- Retain an attorney who specializes in immigration. Your attorney can provide you with valuable advice during this process and assist in making sure regulations are followed and documents are submitted correctly and in a timely manner.
- Gather documentation showing how you have sourced your funds. Compile the documentation into a complete report.
- Complete and file your EB-5 Petitions through your attorney.
EB-5 Investment Costs
Expected Costs of the EB-5 Visa Program
To complete the EB-5 process, foreign nationals must file three separate petitions with United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS): Form I-526E (Immigrant Petition by Regional Center Investor), Form I-485 (Application to Register Permanent Residence or Adjust Status), and Form I-829 (Petition by Entrepreneur to Remove Conditions on Permanent Resident Status).
The filing of Form I-526E must include proof that the investment funds were legally obtained and details of the proposed project that specifically show how the project will meet the requirements of the EB-5 program as a new commercial enterprise (NCE) capable of creating 10 full-time jobs that will last for two years. As part of Form I-485, investors need to provide documentation of their eligibility for immigration to the United States, which may include medical records and other legal documents. The final petition, Form I-829, must demonstrate that the investment has resulted in the creation of the required 10 jobs, that the investment has remained at risk, and that the investor’s capital has not yet been paid back.
These petitions are filed in stages throughout the investment process, and each stage carries its own set of costs. To give an idea of how much money the entire process costs and where that money goes, we have provided a breakdown of fees for each petition or stage. The breakdown provided is based on an investment of $800,000, which is the dollar amount required for an investment in a TEA or an infrastructure project. The fees outlined below are estimates and should be used for demonstration purposes only.
USCIS Costs by Stage
First stage: Filing Form I-526E
Initial investment capital total amount (for TEA or infrastructure projects) – $800,000
Initial application fee (paid to USCIS) – $3,675 + $1,000 EB-5 integrity fund fee
*Other fees in this stage may include attorney’s fees, report writing fees, and money transfer fees
Estimated total: $804,675 + attorney’s fees + administrative fee
Second stage: Filing Form I-485 (can be filed concurrently with Form I-526E)
USCIS filing fees (per family member over age 14) – $1,140
USCIS filing fees (per family member under age 14) – $750
Other USCIS processing fees – approx. $490
*Other fees in this stage may include attorney’s fees and money transfer fees
Third stage: Filing Form I-829
USCIS processing fee – $3,750
*Other fees in this stage may include attorney’s fees, processing fees, and money transfer fees.