Obtaining Permanent U.S. Residence

in Immigration

 When deciding to apply for a U.S. visa green card, there are many options to choose from. Depending on what your plans are in the United States, there are different routes for a visa-seeking applicant to choose from, particularly the EB-5 visa.


The EB-5 visa was established in 1990 and is a business investment based visa in which a qualified foreign applicant must invest at least $500,000 into a U.S. business. If the investment meets all of the requirements by the United States Citizenship and Investment Services (USCIS), the investor, the investor’s spouse and their unmarried children under the age of 21 are issued an EB-5 visa.

The EB-5 visa is unique in that it provides the investor and the investor’s family with conditional resident status until the business venture is complete, which is approximately 2 years and once it is finished the investor is eligible for permanent U.S. residence. This includes a lower tuition rate for if the investor or the investor’s children should choose to enroll into a U.S. university or institution given their permanent resident status as opposed to being an international student from overseas and homestead relief on property taxes.

 Other popular types of U.S. visas to consider are the E-2, L-1 and H1-B. However, there are drawbacks to each of these visas and certain compromises that have made the EB-5 the method of choice for most U.S. visa applicants within the past 10 years.

The E-2 visa does not provide the holder with permanent resident status, the holder must renew their status annually. This is a cause of concern for families in fear that at some point in the future they may be deported from the United States if their status is not renewed. The E-2 also requires that the investor must handle all development and managerial roles of the business whereas the EB-5 allows for the investor to choose from over 100 different eligible EB-5 projects that are managed and developed by directors already.

Other problems arise with the E-2 if the holder should decide to retire, sell their business or have renewed their visa without going through the embassy of their home country. This may result in the E-2 holder actually being landlocked within the United States making it impossible for the holder to leave the country even to attend weddings or funerals, or visit relatives outside of the U.S.

The L-1 visa is reportedly easy to obtain but hard to keep. The L-1 visa is a non-immigrant visa which allows companies operating both in the US and abroad to transfer certain classes of employee from its foreign operations to the U.S. operations for up to seven years. However, it is proved to be difficult for the employer of the L-1 visa to maintain their business in their home country while starting their business in the United States, especially with the current economic climate in the U.S. 

The H1-B visa is a work based visa which is used as a method for employers to recruit and hire international professionals and international students to work in the United States in specialty occupations. These holders experience problems when trying to leave or change their current job in the U.S. and have expressed difficulty regarding their children having to return to their home country once they turn 21 years old. Past H1-B holders have resorted to the EB-5 visa program as the better alternative due to more lenient restrictions.

Within the past five years the EB-5 program has become increasingly popular and sought-after by foreign visa applicants looking for an easy and relatively quick method of immigration to the United States.

More information and details on the EB-5 program is available at http://www.eb5exclusive.com where all of the latest EB-5 news, resources and advice can be found.

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Brittany Castellano has 17 articles online


Brittany Castellano is an assistant marketing director and online publicist for Exclusive Visas who specializes in media outlet for the EB-5 Immigrant Investor Program.

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Obtaining Permanent U.S. Residence

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This article was published on 2010/12/16