The EB-5 visa program and the E-2 visa program are both popular options for foreign investors seeking to obtain visas to live and work in the United States. However, there are some key differences between these two programs that investors should be aware of. In this article, we will discuss the differences between the EB-5 visa program and the E-2 visa program, including the requirements and benefits of each.
The EB-5 visa program requires a minimum investment of $900,000 in a targeted employment area (TEA), or $1.8 million outside of a TEA. The investment must be made in a new commercial enterprise or a regional center, and must create or preserve at least 10 full-time jobs for U.S. workers.
In contrast, the E-2 visa program does not have a specific investment amount requirement. However, investors must make a substantial investment in a U.S. business, typically ranging from $100,000 to $500,000. The investment must be made in a bona fide enterprise that is engaged in commercial trade or services, and must be able to generate income.
The EB-5 visa program requires investors to create or preserve at least 10 full-time jobs for U.S. workers. These jobs can be created directly by the commercial enterprise or indirectly through a regional center.
In contrast, the E-2 visa program does not have a specific job creation requirement. However, the investor must show that the investment will generate sufficient income to support the investor and their family.
The EB-5 visa program grants investors and their families conditional permanent residency for a period of two years. After the two-year period has expired, investors must file a petition to remove the conditional status of their permanent residency. Once the conditional status has been removed, investors and their families are eligible for permanent residency in the United States.
In contrast, the E-2 visa program grants investors and their families non-immigrant visas, which must be renewed periodically. The visa is typically granted for a period of two years, with the option to renew for additional two-year periods.
The EB-5 visa program is open to investors from any country, provided that they meet the eligibility requirements. However, investors from certain countries may face longer processing times due to country-specific visa limitations.
In contrast, the E-2 visa program is only open to investors from countries that have a treaty of commerce and navigation with the United States. Not all countries have such treaties, so this limits the pool of eligible investors.
The EB-5 visa program does not require investors to have prior business or entrepreneurial experience. However, investors must be able to demonstrate that they have the financial resources to make the required investment and create or preserve the necessary jobs.
In contrast, the E-2 visa program generally requires investors to have prior business or entrepreneurial experience. Investors must be able to demonstrate that they have the skills and experience necessary to successfully manage and operate the U.S. business.
Under the EB-5 visa program, spouses of investors are eligible to apply for employment authorization and work in the United States. This can provide additional financial security for the family.
In contrast, under the E-2 visa program, spouses of investors are eligible for dependent visas, but are not automatically eligible to work in the United States. However, spouses can apply for separate employment authorization.
The processing time for the EB-5 visa program can vary widely depending on a number of factors, including the volume of applications and the complexity of the investor’s case. Processing times can range from several months to several years. Investors should be prepared to be patient and flexible, as the process can be lengthy and unpredictable.
In contrast, the processing time for the E-2 visa program is generally shorter than for the EB-5 visa program. The process can take several months, but is generally faster than the EB-5 program due to the simpler requirements and lower investment amounts.
In conclusion, the EB-5 visa program and the E-2 visa program are both viable options for foreign investors seeking to obtain visas to live and work in the United States. However, these programs differ in their investment requirements, job creation requirements, visa duration, nationality requirements, entrepreneurial experience,