At the end of 2015, Congress was once again scrambling to pass a funding bill that would allow the government to continue running until the end of the next fiscal year on September 30, 2016. The trillion dollar bill that was ultimately passed also included a key provision important for many current or potential foreign investors in the U.S. The bill included an extension of the EB-5 Immigrant Investor Pilot Program, also until September 30, 2016. The extension comes with no changes to the original program.
The EB-5 Program is administered by the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) and allows entrepreneurs and investors to become eligible for permanent residency and obtaining a green card if they meet certain criteria, including:
- Make a minimum investment into a business in the U.S.; and
- Their investment will create jobs for at least 10 individuals working full-time in the U.S.
By meeting these requirements, the investor, their spouse, and minor unmarried children can apply for green cards.
While these requirements may not seem difficult to meet, the minimum investment is generally $1,000,000. The Pilot Program (the program that was extended), allows a minimum investment of $500,000 if it goes toward certain regional centers, specific Government-approved projects, and also allows the investment to indirectly create the 10 or more jobs instead of actually needing to employ the individuals on payroll.
Many politicians and political experts were critical of the extension, claiming the program should be reformed and reauthorized. However, most agreed that extended the program as is was more favorable than a complete lapse in the program. The Pilot Program has been utilized more in recent years and, in the last quarter alone, a reported 6,500 investors or more applied for participation in the program.
If you believe that the EB-5 Pilot Program would be beneficial for you as an investor, as well as your family, you should not hesitate to contact an experienced immigration attorney to get started. Investment visa laws and requirements can be complex and it is important to have counsel who can ensure all requirements are met so that you can become a lawful permanent resident as soon as possible.
Consult With An Experienced Immigration Attorney In Florida Today
While the EB-5 pilot program has been extended for now as is, this is not the only option for foreign investors looking to lawfully enter and reside in the United States. It is important to weigh your options carefully to ensure that you choose the right investment visa for your current situation and your family, and a qualified Florida investment visa attorney can help you do just that. The Law Office of Alex T. Barak has worked with many immigrants seeking visas and green cards through investments and business ventures and can help you with the wide variety of legal matter you may face throughout the immigration process. Please call our office today at (954) 399-7778 to learn about how we can assist you.