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EB-5 Investment Immigration Visa

2015-10-02

EB-5 investment immigration plan is the immigrant visa category set up for overseas investment immigrants, “EB -5” (Employment Based Fifth Preference) for short. The visa of this category has been put into practice since 1991. In 1993, American government specially set up an additional kind of “Regional Center Pilot Program” in American Immigration Law,  and softened "ten job opportunities need to be created directly" to " ten job opportunities need to be created directly or indirectly" and decreased the minimum investment amount of 1.00 million dollars to 500 thousand dollars in the immigration application conditions, making EB-5 a convenient and fast channel with shortest approval time of the application and  the least limitation to qualification condition among all American immigration categories.

The Obtaining of EB-5 Qualification
According to EB-5 visa rules, the applicant can invest 500 thousand dollars in the “Regional Center” to obtain the EB-5 qualification:

In order to attract foreign capital to concentratedly invest in the area that the government has specially planned and approved for the promotion of the local economic development, American government has specially set up an additional kind of " Regional Center Pilot Program " in American Immigration Law,  namely that if the investor make the investment in the “Regional Area” approved by American government, then the investment amount for immigration application can be decreased to 500 thousand dollars and the regulation of “ten job opportunities need to be created directly” in the original conditions has been softened to “ten job opportunities need to be created directly or indirectly”. The softening of this qualification conditions has greatly attracted a group of foreign investors who are not familiar with the American business environment. (*According to the regulations of the American Immigration Law, the current statutory limitations of Regional Center Immigration Program will be implemented to September 30, 2015.)

The Most Loose Application Conditions
EB-5 is quite loose in qualification conditions for the applicants. Investors only need to prove that the source of the investment fund is legally obtained without any limitation to business background, age, education level and language capability. And there is no need for the investors to give up their own domestic business and run the EB-5 investment project by themselves. In addition, “Whole Family Immigration” is also one of EB-5’s features. namely that the investor,  spouse and unmarried children under 21 years old can apply for immigration at the same time.

American government regulates that the valid period of conditional green cards is two years. Investors can make the application to U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services for removing the conditional immigrant visa. As long as the investors' investment is still truly existed by this time, their application will be approved by U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services and they will become the permanent residents. During the valid period that the investors holds the conditional green cards, they not only can enter and exit America freely without any confusion on  immigration restrictions, but also can work freely in America. If the investors have domestic business which needs to be taken care of, they can choose not to live in America for a long time with no impact on their immigration status.

At present, the quota of people that American government grants EB-5 visa each year is 10,000, among which, the quota that can be given to Chinese investors won't exceed about 8,000.

Fund and fees related to American EB-5 investment immigration application include:

1. Investment fund (if the application is not successful, the fund will be fully refunded.)
Investment Principal-USD 500,000.00, and
Project Offering Fees -USD 55,000.00
2. Consulting fee and American lawyer fee: USD10,000.00 and USD18,000.00 (for handling I-526)
3. Administrative fee of the third-party escrow fee by Bank of China: USD1,500.00
4. Application Fee: USD1,500.00
5. Notarial documents: About RMB One hundred only to One thousand only
6. Physical Examination Report: About RMB900.00
7. Immigrant visa fee at American Consulate: USD345.00 each person
8. Handling fee of Green Card: USD165.00 each person


Application process of American investment immigration:
1. Documents, including personal data, work experience, source of fund, etc., will be sent to American lawyer for review to determine the applicant’s success rate;
2. The investor remits the investment principal of USD500,000.00 and project offering fee of USD55,000.00 to American project developer’s special account as subscription amount;
3. Supplement and organize documents according to the lawyer’s suggestions, and then the relevant application will be sent to U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services for formal acceptance. It will take about 13 months to get I-526 approval in principal;
4. After I-526 approval is got, the file will be transferred to American Consulate in the applicant's habitual residence (American General Consulate in Guangzhou, China) for the application of the immigrant visa. It will take about 3-5 months to notify the applicant and the family members to conduct physical examination and provide the notarial certificate of non-criminal record. After the visa interview, the whole family will get the immigrant visa in 5 working days;
5. After getting the immigrant visa, the applicant needs to enter America within 6 months and apply for the conditional temporary green card and social security card with the validity period of 2 years;
6. American green card holder cannot leave America for 12 consecutive months every time;
7. Within 21 months after the entry to America, the head office provides the project development information and employees' employment records to the investment immigration applicant’s lawyer so that the applicant can successfully apply for removing I-829 conditions and getting the unconditional green card with validity period of 10 years before conditional temporary green card with the validity period of 2 years expires.
8. If the green card holder lives in America for two and a half years accumulatively within any consecutive 5 years, and hasn't left America for more than 6 consecutive months every time, he/she can apply for American naturalization, become an American citizen after passing all required conditions, and then apply for American passport.

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