EB5 Visa Investors

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Specific Requirements Regarding Lawful Income and Acceptable Types of Property as EB-5 Investment


I. Minimum Amount Requirement

Generally speaking, the minimum investment is $1,000,000. However, the limit is reduced to $500,000 in cases of investment in “targeted employment areas”. Such qualifying areas must have an unemployment rate 150% of the national average. A rural area refers to municipal areas with a population less than 20,000. Every state keeps a list of “targeted employment areas” for reference.

Please note that if there is a redemption clause in a commercial enterprise’s agreement that guarantees the return of a petitioner’s investment, such assets will not be deemed as “at risk”; a petitioner must infuse the full amount of at risk capital into an enterprise.   

II. Legitimate Source of Funds

Assets acquired directly or indirectly by unlawful means such as criminal activities are not acceptable capital. In practice, USCIS is very strict about reviewing the legitimacy of funds.

III. Acceptable Types of Property as Investment

Cash, equipment, inventory, other tangible property, cash equivalents, and indebtedness secured by assets owned by the investor are all acceptable investments for EB-5 purposes. A loan to the company or any other debt between the company and investor does not constitute an investment because such a monetary transfer does not bear any investment risk (some exceptions apply. See below). All capital shall be valued at fair market in U.S. dollars. The investor need not commit his/her entire capital immediately, but the investment must substantially complete prior to the end of the 2-year conditional residency period.

Investment is from your lawful income

  1. Five years of personal income tax returns
  2. Personal bank account statements for the past couple of years
  3. Salary reports
  4. Salary verification letter from previous employers
  5. Five years of business income tax returns if income was generated from the operation of your business
  6. Business registration documents and ownership if funding is from the operation of your business
  7. Articles of incorporation, share certificates and other like documentation if funding is from the operation of your business
  8. Business bank account reports for the past a couple of years if funds are from the operation of your business

Investment Funds are from a gift

  1. Documentation proving funds from the donor to the investor
  2. Statement explaining the surrounding circumstances of the gift and why the gift was made
  3. Gift tax return, if any
  4. Documentation such as personal/business income tax return and ownership of business proving the donor’s financial background to demonstrate how he/she derived the funds that were gifted

Investment Funds are from an inheritance

  1. Statement of the relationship between the investor and the deceased
  2. A death certificate
  3. Documentation of the investor’s receipt of inherited funds
  4. Certification of payment of inheritance tax, if any
  5. If there is a lack of documentation tracing funds from the deceased’s estate to the investor, a statement of thorough explanation of the relationship, the amount inherited, and other circumstances concerning the inheritance is required

Investment Funds are from transactions

Sale of business

  1. Deeds
  2. Closing statements
  3. Bank account statements
  4. Documentation tracing funds from the closing of the transaction to the investor’s individual account
  5. Copy of the business registration before the sale and immediately after the sale
  6. Letter from the accounting firm that represented the investor in the sale, indicating the sale, sale price, and the identity of the buyer
  7. Business financial information such as evaluation from a certified accountant proving the value of the business

Sale of real estate

  1. Purchase agreement
  2. Final settlement statement 
  3. Receipt of funds from the buyer to the investor
  4. Payment of real estate tax obligations
  5. Title transfer evidence
  6. Past five years personal income tax return proving funds in the purchase of the real estate that sold

Sale of stock

  1. Company’s incorporation documents or other company registration documents
  2. The share purchase agreement
  3. Evidence of the transfer of  proceeds of the stock sale from the brokerage company to the investor’s account
  4. Payment of tax obligations of the proceeds of stock sale
  5. Stock transaction record

Investment funds from a loan. (Only a loan secured by your assets as opposed to property of the commercial enterprise that you invested is eligible.)

  1. Terms of the loan agreement
  2. Documentation proving that the loan transferred from the lender to you
  3. Lender’s business registration record, business income tax returns if the lender is a business or personal income tax return if the lender is an individual.