Immigration General Q&A
1. What is the EB-5 Regional Center Pilot Program? In 1990, under section 203(b)(5) of the Immigration and Nationality Act (INA), 8 U.S.C. § 1153(b)(5) the US Congress created the fifth employment-based preference (EB-5) immigrant visa category. Each year, the provision grants 10,000 immigrant visas to qualified individuals seeking permanent resident status on the basis that their investment in a new commercial enterprise will benefit the US economy.
To encourage immigration through the EB-5 program, Congress created a Pilot Program in 1993. The program specifically sets aside 3,000 visas annually for foreign investors who apply through a United States Citizen and Immigration Services (USCIS) designated Regional Center Investment Program. An investor seeking an EB-5 immigrant visa through a designated regional center must generally make a qualifying investment of US $1 million. Certain high unemployment or target employment areas (TEA) qualify for a lesser investment of $500,000. Additionally, the foreign investor must demonstrate that at least 10 jobs were directly or indirectly created through the investment.
2. Who should invest in an EB-5 Regional Center? EB-5 Regional Center foreign investors include people from all walks of life including: professionals, business people, persons wanting to facilitate a child’s education, and retirees. If your goal is to become a permanent resident without actively managing a business, it is often less expensive and more convenient to utilize the Regional Center EB-5 category. EB5 Impact Capital Regional Center will use your investment funds in active projects.
3. What is the minimum required amount of capital to be invested in order to apply for an EB-5 visa? When you invest through a Regional Center, the minimum capital requirement is US$500,000 when you select a project in a rural area or targeted employment area (TEA); for all other projects, the capital requirement is US$1,000,000. EB5 Impact Capital Regional Center selects all of its projects within TEAs designated by the State of California, in order to ensure our immigrant investors receive the best investment opportunities.
4. What is the investors’ involvement in the EB-5 Regional Center program? The EB-5 regulations require your involvement in the EB-5 Regional Center Pilot Program. The regulations deem a limited partner in a limited partnership that conforms to the Uniform Limited Partnership Act as sufficient engagement in the EB-5 enterprise. However, the Uniform Limited Partnership Act, adopted by most states of the United States, prohibits the limited partner from actively participating in management.
5. If I want to move to the United States and invest in an EB5 Impact Capital Regional Center, LLC project, do I have to live in Los Angeles or other areas covered by the Regional Center? No. The EB-5 visa program allows you to maintain your Permanent Residency by living anywhere in the U.S.
6. Are EB-5 visas available to people from any country in the world? Legally yes. However, people from countries that do not have reliable tax and other financial documentation will need to be more actively involved in proving the authentication and source of investment funds to process an EB-5 visa application.