UNITED STATES OF AMERICA
RESIDENCY BY INVESTMENT
About United States of America
The United States of America (USA), commonly known as the United States (US) or America, is a country primarily located in North America.
The climate of the USA is diverse, ranging from tropical conditions in south Florida and Hawaii to arctic and alpine conditions in Alaska and across the Rocky Mountains.
The USA gained independence in 1776 and is a constitutional federal republic with a president as the Chief of State.
The USA is a member of many international organisations such as the United Nations (UN), the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) and the World Health Organization (WHO) to name a few.
The USA is a highly sought-after country for international investors due to the stable and secure economic environment. The EB-5 Immigrant Investor Program was created by Congress in 1990 to stimulate the economy and is the most efficient way to acquire permanent resident (‘Green Card’) status in the USA.
The USA consists of 50 states and the District of Columbia and is located in North America, bordering both the North Atlantic Ocean and the North Pacific Ocean, between Canada and Mexico.
Residency by Investment
The EB-5 Reform and Integrity Act sets aside a certain percentage each fiscal year of EB-5 immigrant visas for qualified immigrant investors. EB-5 immigrant visas are available for participants who invest in commercial enterprises associated with government-approved regional centers based on proposals for promoting economic growth.
Investors (and their spouses and unmarried children under 21) are eligible to apply for a Green Card (permanent residence) if they make the necessary investment in a new commercial enterprise in the USA and create or preserve 10 permanent full-time jobs for qualified USA workers.
Applicants for the EB-5 Immigrant Investment Program must fulfill the following conditions:
- Aged 18 or over
- Individual applicants must have a net worth in excess of US$1 million
- Have no criminal record
- Pass a detailed background check
- Be able to provide proof of source of funds
- Investment in a new commercial enterprise in the USA
- Create/preserve 10 permanent full-time jobs for qualified USA workers
Benefits of United States of America residency
- Provides a legal path to live, work, and study in the USA
- Efficient route to gaining permanent resident status (a Green Card)
- Investors may be eligible for citizenship after five years of permanent residence status
- Minimal application requirements
- Minimal physical presence requirements
All EB-5 investors must invest in a new commercial enterprise that was established:
- After Nov. 29, 1990; or
- On or before Nov. 29, 1990, that was:
- Purchased and the existing business is restructured or reorganised in such a way that a new commercial enterprise results; or
- Expanded through the investment, resulting in at least a 40% increase in the net worth or number of employees.
New commercial enterprise means any for-profit activity formed for the ongoing conduct of lawful business, including:
- A sole proprietorship;
- Partnership (whether limited or general);
- Holding company and its wholly owned subsidiaries (provided that each subsidiary is engaged in a for-profit activity formed for the ongoing conduct of a lawful business);
- Joint venture;
- Business trust;
- Limited liability company; or
- Other entity, which may be publicly or privately owned.
This definition does not include non-commercial activity, such as owning and operating a personal residence.
JOB CREATION REQUIREMENTS:
An EB-5 investor must invest the required amount of capital in a new commercial enterprise that will create full-time positions for at least 10 qualifying employees.
The investor must show that the number of existing employees is, or will be, no less than the pre-investment level for a period of at least two years.
CAPITAL INVESTMENT REQUIREMENTS:
Capital means cash and all real, personal, or mixed tangible assets owned and controlled by the immigrant investor. All capital will be valued at fair-market value in US dollars ($).
The minimum investment amounts are:
US$ 1,050,000 into a non-targeted employment area project
US$ 800,000 into a targeted employment area (TEA) project in a rural area or an area with high unemployment
A targeted employment area (TEA) can be, at the time of investment, either:
- A rural area; or
- An area that has experienced high unemployment (defined as at least 150% of the national average unemployment rate).
Regional center investors may choose to invest in a new commercial enterprise engaged in an infrastructure project.
Invested funds must stay invested until permanent resident status is granted (roughly five years).
Approved applicants will receive conditional Green Cards for a period of two years roughly 18 to 24 months after application is successful. The conditions on the Green Card are then removed at the end of the two years upon demonstrating to USA immigration authorities that the jobs were in fact created or maintained. The transition does not affect what the Green Card holder can do in the USA.
Investors’ spouses and unmarried children under 21 years of age may apply for Green Cards as derivative applicants and are not required to make further financial contributions but must submit their own paperwork.
Permanent residents can settle anywhere in the USA, but they are limited in their visa-free or visa-on-arrival access when compared to other countries.