EB- 5 - Fifth Preference - Employment Creation Investors

The fifth employment-based preference is set-aside for alien investors in new commercial enterprises or troubled businesses, who seek to obtain permanent residency.

With the 1990 Immigration Act, Congress has kept aside up to 10,000 immigrant visas per year just for alien investors in new commercial enterprises, who will create employment for at least ten individuals.   Historically, these immigrant visas have remained available each year, as there have been less than 10,000 approved each year.

Qualified EB-5 Investors generally receive approval as a Conditional Permanent Resident for 2 years, and then must confirm they remain qualified.  Prior to the end of the 2-year conditional approval, an additional process is required in order for the Investor to confirm that the investment remains quailed, at which time the conditions are removed. 

EB-5 cases are highly complex and require careful planning and legal advice.

There are two investor groups under the program:

  • Those who invest $1,000,000 in other areas, and create or save at least 10 new full time jobs in the United States.
  • People who invest at least $500,000 in "targeted employment areas" (rural areas or areas experiencing high unemployment of at least 150% of the national average) and those who invest $1,000,000 in other areas, and who create or save at least 10 new full time jobs in the United States. 

A Regional Investment Center

EB-5 Investors can also invest in a United States Citizenship and Immigration Center designated Regional Investment Center (RIC).

A Regional Investment Center is defined as any economic unit, public or private, which is involved with the promotion of economic growth, improved regional productivity, job creation, and increased domestic capital investment.   Basic requirements for RIC include that the organization must be an:

  • An entity, organization or agency that has been approved as such by United States Citizenship and Immigration Services;
  • Focuses on a specific geographic area within the United States; and 
  • Seeks to promote economic growth through increased export sales, improved regional productivity, creation of new jobs, and increased domestic capital investment.

Regional Investment Centers have several advantages, including prior approval from USCIS as a “qualified center” from USCIS.   In addition, the Investor is not required to create a new entity, or work directly for the investment entity.  The investor only needs to have limited involvement and oversight, can work at other independent locations, and is not directly responsible for job creation.  

There are over 600 Current Immigrant Investor Regional Centers that have been approved by USCIS.

For more information about Investor based Permanent Residency, please contact Kolko & Associates, P.C. to schedule a consultation.

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Kolko & Associates is a full service immigration and naturalization law firm providing professional legal services to individuals and businesses throughout Colorado, the Rocky Mountain West, the United States, and the World. Our professional staff speaks English, Spanish, Korean, German, and Slovak, and we can arrange for translators in any other language.