Revived EB-5 Program Will Provide Green Cards for Foreign Investors

Mario A. Godoy
Revived EB-5 Program Will Provide Green Cards for Foreign Investors

Congress has reached an agreement to revive the EB-5 visa program that allows foreign investors to apply for a green card if they invest in U.S. real estate or a business or project. The program has brought over $40 billion in foreign investment to the United States and was not renewed in 2021. The bill was passed by Congress and enacted on March 12. According to a tweet by the American Immigrant Investor Alliance (AIIA),

“It is our great pleasure to announce that the EB-5 Regional Center program will be reauthorized with the Omnibus on March 15, 2022.”

The EB-5 investor visa program allows investors, their spouses and unmarried children under 21 to apply for a green card (permanent residence) if they:

• Make the required investment in a commercial enterprise in the United States; AND
• Create or preserve 10 permanent full-time jobs for qualified U.S. workers

New EB-5 Applicants

Under the agreement reached by U.S. lawmakers, investor-visa new applicants will have to:

• invest at least $1,050,000 into an investment project OR
• invest $800,000 in an area with high unemployment, an increase over the current $500,000 investment in a high unemployment area, called targeted employment areas (TEAs) or “infrastructure projects”
• more vetting and reporting requirements
• gives the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) more authority to ensure that the money foreign investors are putting into U.S. projects is ethically sourced

Pending EB-5 Applicants

Investor visa applicants whose application is currently pending:

• will not be subject to the new rules
• will not be subject to the higher investment amounts
• the final legislation includes approval of concurrent filings of EB-5 petitions, adjustment of status applications, employment authorization and travel documents

Other EB-5 Program Updates

The approved EB-5 program includes:

• grandfathering provisions that will ensure the process EB-5 visa program continues if there is a future EB-5 program lapse, provided the EB-5 petition is filed by September 30, 2026
• the new bill sets aside 20% of total EB-5 visa numbers for investments in rural areas, 10% for investments in high unemployment areas and 2% for investments in infrastructure projects
• provides protection for dependent children aging-out in certain circumstances
• allowing concurrent adjustment of status filings with investor immigrant petitions
• gifts are not limited to familial relations
• if a regional center or new commercial enterprise (NCE) is terminated, there is a procedure to switch projects
• source of funds requirements apply to capital investments, administrative fees and any fees “associated” with the investment

Immigrant Investor Visa Attorney

If you have a question about immigrant investor visas or how to qualify an EB-5 green card, contact Mario Godoy and the immigration attorneys at Godoy Law Office in Chicago, Illinois at 630-912-0322.

 

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