Shopify Ecosystem

What Is An EB5 Visa And When Can It Be Used?

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For an entrepreneur seeking to move a business to the US or even considering starting a new business there, the processes for immigration, if not well understood, could be pretty daunting.

Even though you have researched the immigration processes and have understood the options available, the best way forward would be to seek guidance and advice from green card investor visa legal experts. They can help you with the relevant and best-suited visa application process. 

There are a few visa options when you, as an entrepreneur, seek to move to the US with your business or start a new business there. One such option, which has gained popularity with entrepreneurs, is the EB-5 category of visa. This visa option is best suited for entrepreneurs and investors who seek to obtain a green card in the US. Applying for the EB-5 visa entitles you to live, work and settle in the US. This option allows you to avail yourself of a similar facility for your spouse and children.

The primary criterion to qualify for an EB-5 visa would be your readiness to invest an amount equivalent to US $ 1,800,000 in a business based in the US. In some cases, this investment could be brought down to US $ 900,000. The EB-5 visa is generally opted for by those who seek to ultimately settle down in the US with their family and apply for US citizenship through the permanent residency program. The basic requirements for this visa stipulate that :

  • The applicant can prove that they can invest the minimum investment requirement in the US from their funds.
  • After setting up the business or investing in an existing business in the US, employment opportunities will be created for a minimum of ten US jobs.
  • The applicant submits an undertaking and commits to follow the requisite regulations towards all statutory compliances.
  • The business is set up would be a commercial enterprise that would earn profits.
  • The business would not be in the real estate sector or any not-for-profit segment.
  • The capital brought to the US is invested in the business for the whole period.

The types of businesses that qualify through the EB-5 visa could be sole proprietorships, limited and general partnerships, or LLC constitutions. The EB-5 visa program also allows you to either start a new business, acquire an existing one, or invest in an existing one. In some cases, you could also invest through a regional center. A key aspect to be considered while applying for an EB-5 visa is the documentary evidence of the source of your funds being brought to the US for investment. These funds must have been earned through lawful means like income from salary, sale proceeds of a property, approved and sanctioned loan against a real estate equity holding, through inheritance, or from the sales proceeds of an existing business in your home country, in which case the sold company should have belonged to you or your family in which you were an active shareholder.

Documents needed for applying for an EB-5 Visa:

Personal Details : 

  • Your passport
  • Birth Certificate (showing the place of Birth)
  • Educational Qualification documents
  • Marriage Certificate or Partnership Certificate (certified), if applicable
  • Details of social security or equivalent card from home country

Business Details:

  • Type of business (segment/sector/industry)
  • Detailed business plan with financial forecasts for three years
  • In case of workers and employees being hired or already hired, then Forms W-2 and I-9 to be submitted
  • Job descriptions and employee requirements to fulfill the same
  • Business Registration documents for existing business 
  • Registered articles of incorporation for existing business if it is a corporation
  • Registered articles of organization if the company is an LLC
  • Details of all shareholders and other equity participants

Source of Funds:

  • Tax-paid details, including returns filed for five years preceding the year of application for the EB-5 visa.
  • Bank details from where the funds are expected to be transferred
  • In case of property sale, all the details of sellers and buyers

The EB-5 immigrant investor visa is a program designed to attract eligible overseas investors to the US to build and create new business areas and become lawful permanent residents in the US. While there are many ways to become legal US permanent residents, the EB-5 visa appears to be one of the more popular methods for entrepreneurs and business people because it allows them to transition from their business at home to a company in the US in a very smooth way.

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