Investment – based immigration for Canadians
Anyone seeking a green card in this category must prove that his/her funds were earned legally and must be content with a two-year conditional green card, which must be later converted into the permanent green card. In certain areas of high unemployment in the U.S., the investment amount is reduced to $500,000.00. There are specific government approved projects where one can get in for only $500,000.00. The investor invests in a limited partnership and the requirement of active management may be relieved. In this version, it is as if the applicant is buying a green card.
Obtaining approval of the I-526,
EB-5 Visa (green card category)
- If an individual who himself invests $1,000,000.00, or in connection with a group of investors in which he will be the principal director/manager, invests $1,000,000.00 of a larger investment in a new business which hires 10 or more American workers or permanent residents, or if an existing company is purchased with the one million dollars and it is expanded by at least 40% more, it is possible to obtain permanent residency (green card).
- There are many start-up companies advertising all over the place for a green card for $500,000.00. These are
high riskenterprises that need to be heavily scrutinized by an attorney familiar with the EB-5 visa regulations. No one should approach any of these companies without first hiring a very experienced attorney.
- Anyone seeking a green card in this category must prove that his/her funds were earned legally and must be content with a two-year conditional green card, which must be later converted into the permanent green card. In certain areas of high unemployment in the U.S., the investment amount is reduced to $500,000.00. There are specific government approved projects where one can get in for only $500,000.00. The investor invests in a limited partnership and the requirement of active management may be relieved. In this version, it is as
if theapplicant is buying a green card.
- Obtaining approval of the I-526, then adjustment of status, gives the client and his family a temporary or conditional permanent residency status, Conditional Lawful Permanent Residence (CLPR) for two years.
- To convert first two-year green card into a permanent status, a new petition, Petition Removal of Conditions for EB-5 Investor, needs to be filed within the 90 days before the expiration of the first two-year green card, to prove the business is still in operation, thus converting the temporary green card into a permanent one. The “conditions” must be removed so that the aliens may reside in the U.S. indefinitely. Failure to remove the conditions results in the termination of CLPR status and will likely result in the commencement of deportation proceedings.
- In this second step to obtain an unlimited green card, the investor must demonstrate full investment in the enterprise and compliance with the requirement regarding jobs. The investor must also demonstrate maintenance of the investment continuously since becoming a CLPR. The General Partner of the Project will provide documentation upon request by the investor as reasonably necessary and available in support of investor’s application for Removal of Conditions
- During the pendency of the second step, aliens admitted in Conditional Lawful Permanent Resident (CLPR) Status remain in valid status even if the petition is not decided before the expiry of the two year period of admission. CLPR is USUALLY extended for six months upon filing this Petition and extensions are granted while the case remains undecided until the petition to remove conditions is adjudicated
Multinational Executive or Manager, GREEN CARD CATEGORY
- A person who is a manager or an executive of a multinational company can file directly for a green card if the U.S. branch has been in business for at least a year. There is a popular procedure whereby a foreign company opens a new subsidiary in the U.S. and sends a manger to manage the new subsidiary. Then, from 1-7 years later, the U.S. company files for a green card for this manager, as long as the foreign parent and U.S. subsidiary relationship has continued.
- When to file between one year and the seventh year depends on the number of employees and other financial factors. An experienced attorney can help to recommend when to file.
- A shortcut to this green card category called multinational executive or manager is for foreign company to purchase anywhere between 51% and 100% of the ownership of an American company which has at least five employees; then the newly acquired U.S. subsidiary can apply directly for a green card for the foreign manager or executive and can skip the L-1 temporary working visa.
- By opening a new subsidiary of a foreign business in the U.S., a foreign business executive/manager can receive a working visa, L-1A, good up to seven years for a qualified multinational company scenario. The spouse and children receive the L-2 visa. The spouse can also receive a work permit. This category of L-1A visa is convertible into a permanent green card via multi-national manager category.
- A company in theory could file directly for a green card for its foreign overseas manager if there is an already existing U.S. subsidiary of this foreign company in existence of over one year or if the foreign company buys out a U.S. company and establishes it as a subsidiary. This is known as Green Card for Multinational Executives and Managers.
- Returning to the L-1A visa, the Immigration application for the L-1A visa and all proof will be mailed by the attorney to a central immigration office and an approval notice ora request for more evidence can be obtained in the case within approximately 60-90 days of Immigration’s receipt of the package through regular service. If additional documents are requested, after they are sent to Immigration, it will take an additional three to four weeks until approval under normal processing, or up to 15 days more on express service. Immigration officers vary in their approach to these cases. Some are easier than others. Premium Processing costs $1225.00 extra and guarantees a response to the petition within 15 days.
- The approval notice will be sent by the attorney to the client. If the client is in the U.S., he can apply to change status while here, and actually can begin working upon approval. If he travels outside the U.S., or is outside the U.S. when filing, then he will need to get the L-1 visa in his passport at the U.S. Embassy in his home country before trying to return to the U.S. He first must complete online the Department of State DS 160 form which is very lengthy and detailed. Then, he will need to make an appointment with a Non-Immigrant Visa Officer. There are some additional fees to pay to the Department of State per person for the L-1A, L-1B visas and the L-1 for dependent spouses and children.
- The L-1B visa is for an employee of the foreign company who has specialized knowledge. This visa can be extended up to five years, but does not have the direct route for green card that the L-1A has.
- L visas for a new American company are issued for one year. Thereafter, an extension can be applied for a two year extension. For an existing company active for over a year, an L-1A visa can be issued at the beginning for three years.
E-2 visa, investor visa
America offers investors certain type of immigration benefits. Firstly, Canada has a special arrangement with America for the E-2 visa, which allows a person who opens up a business in the U.S. and places about $100,000.00 at risk to have the opportunity to have an investor visa, which can be valid and renewed indefinitely, as long as the business remains operational. The spouse and children under 21 also come along. The spouse can also receive a work permit. This visa has no direct path to a green card, but proper structuring and maintaining a multinational corporate structure can lead to a green card under the multinational executive/manager category. Not every country is on the E-2 visa list, so please check with your immigration attorney. Contact our experienced investment visa attorney today.
E-2 visa requirements:
- The investor is a national of a country with whom the U.S. has the requisite treaty or agreement
- The alien (or in the case of an employee of a treaty investor who seeks classification as an E-2, the owner of the treaty enterprise) will direct or develop the enterprise. The alien must demonstrate that he controls the enterprise by showing ownership of at least 50% of the enterprise, by possessing operational control through a managerial position or other corporate device or by other means;
- The investor has invested in or is actively in the process of investing in the enterprise;
- The investment is substantial, i.e. sufficient to ensure the investor’s financial commitment to the successful operation of the enterprise and big enough to support the likelihood that the investor will successfully direct and develop the enterprise;
- The investment enterprise is not a marginal enterprise;
- If the applicant is not the principal investor, he or she must be employed in an executive or supervisory capacity, or possess skills that are highly specialized and essential to the operations of the commercial enterprise. Ordinary skilled or unskilled workers do not qualify.
- That the applicant intends to depart the U.S. upon the expiration of E-2 status
- The investor, either a real or corporate person, must be a national of a treaty country;
- The applicant has invested or is in the process of investing
- The investor must have control of the funds, and the investment must be at risk in the commercial sense. Loans secured with assets of the investment enterprise are not allowed; and
- The investment must be a real operating enterprise. Speculative or idle investment does not qualify. Uncommitted funds in a bank account or similar security are not considered an investment;
- The investment must be substantial. It must be sufficient to ensure the successful operation of the enterprise. The percentage of investment for a low-cost business enterprise must be higher than the percentage of investment in a high-cost enterprise;
- The investment may not be marginal. It must generate significantly more income than just to provide a living to the investor and family, or it must have a significant economic impact in the United States;
- The applicant is in a position to “develop and direct” the enterprise
Client must have a comprehensive business plan.
In addition to the above, applicant must provide a document-linked history of the funds to provide clear and unquestionable proof of the money’s legal sources.
If the investor is legally in the U.S. with an unexpired temporary visa, we can file for change of status through the mail with Immigration. The client who is here on a non-immigrant visa whose stay has not expired has the option from Immigration for speedier processing, which involves an $1225.00 additional premium processing fee, which, according to Immigration guarantees processing of an approval or a request for more documentation within 15 days. A spouse and minor children under 21 can receive derivative E-2 status. A derivative spouse on E-2 can also obtain a work permit.
The client will need to go to the U.S. Embassy in the treaty or home country for an appointment specifically for an E-2 visa interview.
Client and family members will have to complete online Department of State forms.
Client will cooperate with attorney and gather and assemble all documents needed for this category. The attorney will prepare and send in advance a comprehensive package which will be thoroughly reviewed and inspected by a Non-Immigrant Visa/E-2 specialist.The attorney will communicate with the U.S. Embassy/Consulate, as necessary, to discuss and conclude the client’s intended successful process.
The E-2 visa can be issued initially for five years and can be renewed indefinitely as long as the business continues to be actively operated in full compliance with American laws.
The E-2 regulations require the applicant to have an intention to return to his home country. This intent must be placed into writing. The applicant can never state he/she intends to live in the USA permanently.
SEE OUR SEPARATE CANADIAN E-2 VISA PAGE
Treaty Trader (E-1) visa is for a national of a country with which the United States (U.S.) maintains a treaty of commerce and navigation who is coming to the U.S. to carry on substantial trade, including trade in services or technology, principally between the U.S. and the treaty country, or to develop and direct the operations of an enterprise in which the national has invested, or is in the process of investing a substantial amount of capital, under the provisions of the Immigration and Nationality Act.
The maximum length for which an E-1 visa can be issued is 5 years. But typically the first E-1 is issued for three years to relatively small and small businesses. Large companies with high turnover and employing many Americans can be issued the first visas for five years.
Requirements for the Treaty Trader
• The applicant must be a national of a treaty country.
• The trading firm for which the applicant is coming to the U. S. must have the nationality of the treaty country.
• The international trade must be “substantial” in the sense that there is a sizable and continuing volume of trade.
• The trade must be principally between the U.S. and the treaty country, which is defined to mean that more than 50 percent of the international trade involved must be between the U.S. and the country of the applicant’s nationality.
• Trade means the international exchange of goods, services, and technology. Title of the trade items must pass from one party to the other.
• The applicant must be employed in a supervisory or executive capacity, or possess highly specialized skills essential to the efficient operation of the firm. Ordinary skilled or unskilled workers do not qualify.
Family of E-1 Treaty Traders and Employees
Spouses and unmarried children under 21 years of age, regardless of nationality, may receive derivative E visas in order to accompany the principal visa holder. The spouse of an E visa holder may apply to DHS for employment authorization. Dependent children of an E visa holder are not authorized to work in the U.S. Contact our experienced Hollywood investment visa attorney.
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