This article was written in an effort to provide insight to those researching the EB-5 visa for the first time.
The EB-5 visa is an immigrant investor visa which provides lawful permanent residence to the bearer. For those who are unfamiliar with United States Immigration law the term lawful permanent residence is commonly referred to as "Green Card" status. Those granted admission to the U.S. in Lawful Permanent Resident (LPR) status are allowed to reside in the United States and also to seek and take up employment. For many, United States lawful permanent residence is a substantial benefit as it provides the alien with the privilege of living and working in the United States as defined by the US Immigration and Nationality Act.
Those wishing to invest in the USA while concurrently seeking American immigration benefits should note that the required investment is substantial. Under currently applicable law, those Chinese nationals wishing to obtain an EB-5 visa should be ready to invest a minimum of five hundred thousand (500,000) US dollars into an eligible program in the United States. In certain instances, it may be required that the prospective immigrant invest at least 1 million (1,000,000) American dollars if the qualified investment is considered to be "non-targeted".
In a certain sense, Chinese Immigrant Investors and the American public are engaged in a "win-win" scenario when it comes to the EB5 visa. This is due to the fact that the Immigrant is investing significant capital into the US economy while also receiving the, not insignificant, benefit of residing in the United States of America.
The United States Immigration process can be rather confusing and cumbersome for those who are unaccustomed to dealing with the Immigration system. In most cases, the prospective immigrant will be required to file a petition in the USA and an application at a United States Embassy or Consulate in the Peoples' Republic of China. Rule modifications, periodic increases in relevant costs, regulatory changes, and local practices at American Missions abroad can have a significant impact on the processing of American EB-5 visas.
Therefore, some prospective Chinese investors opt to retain the services of an American Immigration attorney in order to gain insight into the process and obtain assistance in seeking an Immigrant Investor visa to the USA. Anyone wishing to receive advice regarding the Immigrant Investor visa is prudent to check the credentials of those claiming expertise in United States Immigration matters as only a licensed American attorney is permitted to represent individuals before the United States Citizenship and Immigration Service (USCIS) of the American State Department.