The EB-5 Investor green card has been introduced with the aim of attracting more foreign investments and creating and preserving jobs in the US. The green card through investment, also known as Fifth Preference, is attainable to those persons who make investments of a certain amount of money, which would have an ameliorating effect on the US economy and would also open up a predetermined number of jobs benefiting qualified personnel within the country.
The amount of the venture capital varies depending on the nature of business it is invested into. Investments of 1 million dollars or more in a new business or aggrandizing an existing business which employs at least 10 US workers are qualified for filing for the EB-5 Investor Visa.
Direct investments of $500,000 or more in certain “targeted employment areas” are also qualified for filing for the EB-5 investor visa. This investment can be utilized to either set up a new business or to purchase and reconstitute an existing business which employs 10 full time US workers. One important detail to be noted here is that family members of the investor cannot be counted among the 10 US workers. If the existing business happens to be a debilitated one, then one may be exempted from the employment requirement of creating 10 jobs.
An interesting feature about the green card through investment is that several investors can join together to create or acquire an existing business. In such a case each investor will qualify for a green card through the single business, although the individual investments of each investor cannot be less than the minimum eligible amount. The number of new jobs to be created then would be the number of investors multiplied by ten.
The investments are to be held in the US for a minimum period of three years. The investor will be subject to US taxation even on his income from other parts of the world. The investor also requires special permission if he needs to remain outside the US for more than one year at a time.
The source of the investment funds can come from any legal foreign or US source. This includes gifts, loans, trusts and even divorce settlements. Investment funds that are borrowed qualify as long as they are not secured through the assets of the EB-5 investment business,
The green card through investment grants permanent residency to the spouse and the offspring (unmarried and under 21 years of age at the time of filing for EB-5 Visa.) of the applicant. This further gives one the option to live, work and retire in the United States. College and University education of the offspring can be availed of at the same cost as for US residents. An investor approved for the EB-5 Visa receives a conditional green card. The only difference between a normal green card and the EB-5 approved green card is that the latter needs to be revalidated or reissued every two years.