Are You An Immigrant Investor? The New EB-5 Rules May Affect You

Are You An Immigrant Investor? The New EB-5 Rules May Affect YouThe EB-5 visa program is a popular way for foreigners to invest in the United States and obtain a green card. The program has been around for quite a while, but recent changes have made it even more attractive to investors, while also keeping it in touch with current times.

The new rules, which became effective on March 15, 2022, revise certain requirements for investment projects and regional centers seeking USCIS designation as an EB-5 immigrant investor program.

The New EB-5 Rule for Immigrant Investors

The new rule for EB-5 immigrant investors, which went into effect on March 15, 2022, raises the investment thresholds for Target Employment Area (TEA) infrastructure projects from $500,000 to $800,000, and for other EB-5 case types from $1 million to $1.05 million. The enterprise must also create 10 or more full-time jobs for U.S. workers within two years of the investor’s admission to the United States as a conditional permanent resident.

The USCIS stated that the higher investment thresholds will help to “more effectively target the program to its intended purpose of stimulating economic growth and creating jobs.” The agency also said that it will continue to “review and update” the TEA investment thresholds as needed in order to ensure that they remain appropriate.

The New EB-5 Regional Center Designations

Effective with the new rules, all EB-5 Regional Centers must pay an annual fee of $20,000 into an integrity fund. The RC investor (you) must also pay $1,000 into this fund when filing your I-526 (EB-5 visa) petition.

USCIS has instituted this new fee in order to help finance its efforts to audit all Regional Centers at least every five years. This increased level of scrutiny is necessary in order to ensure that all Regional Centers are operating in accordance with the law and that none are taking advantage of the EB-5 program for their own benefit.

While some may view this new fee as an unnecessary burden, it is important to remember that it is only being levied on those entities that stand to gain the most from the immigrant investor program.

If you need help with an immigration matter, it can be overwhelming, and be hard to even know where to start looking for help or what options are available. Our attorneys at HAWM Law are ready, experienced and committed to helping immigrants at any stage of the US immigration process. You do not have to struggle through this process alone.

What Are the New Visa Quotas for the New EB-5 Rules?

The EB-5 annual statutory quota is set in the Immigration and Nationality Act (INA) at 7.1% of the total for employment-based visas (140,000 x .071 = 9,940). This means that up to 9,940 immigrant visas may be issued in any fiscal year to aliens who qualify under the EB-5 category. The actual number of EB-5 visas issued in a given year may be less than this cap, however, if there are not enough qualified applicants or if visa demand is less than supply.

If the demand is greater than supply, any unused family-based immigrant visas from the previous year’s family-based cap rolls over into the EB-5 category. So, in practice, the actual number of EB-5 visas available in any given year may be somewhat higher than 9,940.

Subcategories under the quotas include:

  • 20% of the total number of EB-5 visas available for each fiscal year for investments in rural TEAs;
  • 10% of the total number of EB-5 visas available for each fiscal year for investments in high unemployment TEAs;
  • 2% of the total number of EB-5 visas available for each fiscal year for infrastructure projects.

Speak to a Florida Based US Immigration Attorney

In conclusion, the new EB-5 rules are a great opportunity for immigrant investors. The process is simple and the benefits are many. If you are interested in investing in the United States, please contact us today to learn more about the immigrant investor program.

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