What Is the EB-5 I-526 Petition?

This is a question that many people have been asking lately. An Eb-5 I-526 petition is a form that must be filled out in order to apply for an EB-5 visa. This visa allows foreign nationals to invest in a new commercial enterprise in the United States and eventually obtain permanent residency. If you are interested in obtaining an EB-5 visa, make sure you read this article! We will go over everything you need to know about the Eb-5 I-526 petition process.

What Is the Purpose of the Eb-5 I-526 Petition?

The form is used by an individual investor to request USCIS (the United States Citizenship and Immigration Services) for status as an immigrant under section 203(b)(5) of the Immigration and Nationality Act.

The form must be filed with the appropriate regional center in order to be accepted for adjudication. All stand-alone investors must file this form regardless of whether they seek a new immigrant visa or an adjustment of status. Upon filing, the investor will be required to submit evidence that they have met all of the prerequisites for investments, such as business plans, job creation, and capital investment. After review, USCIS will adjudicate the form and make a determination on the investor’s status. If approved, the investor will be granted lawful permanent resident status and may begin their investment in the United States.

The EB-5 I-526 Petition

The EB-5 investor files Form I-526, Immigrant Petition by Alien Entrepreneur, to show that they have already invested the necessary funds in an approved EB-5 project or are in the process of doing so. In most cases, an immigration lawyer will prepare I-526 petitions on behalf of EB-5 petitioners. After making the necessary preparations to invest in an approved EB-5 project, applicants are qualified to submit the I-526 petition. These projects, which must be a part of a brand-new business venture, can be handled directly by the immigrant investor or through an EB-5 Regional Center, which the government authorizes to handle EB-5 projects.

What Are the Requirements for the Eb-5 I-526 Petition?

Investment Amount

USCIS sets Eb-5 I-526 Petitions The investment required for an Eb-5 I-526 petition. The EB-5 Reform and Integrity Act of 2022 raises the investment to $1,050,000 for standard cases and $800,000 for targeted employment areas. This act also redefines what is classified as a targeted employment area. A Targeted Employment Areas (TEA) is defined as an area that the state has designated as rural or an area with high unemployment (at least 150% of the national average rate).

The investment has to be made in a brand-new commercial enterprise, which is a for-profit organization established for the continuous conduct of legal business, including but not restricted to:

– A sole proprietorship

– Partnership (whether limited or general)

– Holding company

– Joint venture

– Corporation – A business trust or other entity which may be publicly or privately owned.

Investment Capital Was Lawfully Obtained

Suppose an Eb-5 investor’s capital was obtained through lawful means, such as through gifts, loans, or other legal sources of income. In that case, the investor will likely be able to successfully file an Eb-5 i-526 petition. However, if an Eb-5 investor’s capital was obtained through illegal means, such as through fraud or money laundering, then the investor will likely not be able to successfully file an Eb-5 i-526 petition. Therefore, the Eb-5 investor must also show that the investment capital was lawfully obtained, like security agreements and bank account statements and that it is not derived from criminal activity. To do this, the Eb-5 investor must provide documentation demonstrating the lawful source of the investment capital.

Obtained Capital Was Invested in an NCE.

Suppose you’re looking to obtain EB-5 investor status. In that case, you’ll need to file an I-526 Petition demonstrating that you have the minimum amount of capital required and that it has been invested in a New Commercial Enterprise (NCE). An NCE is defined as any for-profit entity engaging in lawful commercial business activity established after November 29, 1990. In other words, as long as your business was established after that date and engaged in legal, and commercial activity, it should qualify as an NCE.

EB-5 investment must be at risk

In order for an EB-5 investment to be considered at risk, the investor must show that they have irrevocably committed their capital to the enterprise and that they stand to lose their investment if the enterprise fails. In other words, the investor cannot simply withdraw their investment if the business does not succeed. To demonstrate that their investment is at risk, the investor will need to provide evidence such as business plans, contracts, and other documentation showing their commitment to the enterprise.

The Eb-5 investor must also show that the investment capital was obtained through lawful means and that it is not derived from criminal activity. To do this, the Eb-5 investor must provide documentation demonstrating the lawful source of the investment capital.

The investment creates 10 full-time U.S. jobs.

If you are looking to invest in a U.S. business through the Eb-5 immigrant investor program, one of the essential requirements is that your investment must create or preserve at least 10 jobs for qualified U.S. workers.

There are two main ways to meet this job creation requirement: direct or indirect job creation.

Direct Investments

The 10 positions must be created by the NCE itself, be permanent, full-time, and filled by W-2 employees. The requisite number of jobs must be created; positions filled by nonimmigrant aliens or by the investor and his or her family are not eligible. The I-526 Petition filed by the investor must show the creation of at least 10 new jobs. The I-526 must clearly outline the NCE’s hiring strategy, including which positions will be created and when they will be filled, in order to prove future job creation.

Indirect Investments

An NCE that a regional center sponsors must still create at least 10 full-time jobs for each EB-5 investor and these jobs might be generated directly or indirectly. Jobs created by the NCE’s revenues are referred to as indirect jobs. Any indirect jobs that count toward an investor’s minimum job creation criteria must be supported by an economic report in the investor’s I-526 petition.

How long does it take to approve I-526?

The I-526 Immigrant Investor Visa petition can take anywhere from 29 to 61 months to be approved, depending on the country’s visa availability. The time frame for approval also varies depending on the service center that is processing the petition.

Final Thoughts

The Eb-5 i-526 petition can be a great way to get your green card, but it’s important to do your research and understand the process before you apply. There are a lot of moving parts to the Eb-5 process, and it’s important to work with an experienced attorney who can guide you through the process and help you avoid potential pitfalls.

If you’re considering Eb-5, take the time to learn about the program and speak with an experienced immigration attorney before you apply. With careful planning and a bit of luck, the Eb-5 process can be a great way to get your green card and start a new life in the United States.

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