The EB-5 visa for Immigrant Investors is a United States visa created by the Immigration Act of 1990.
The Immigrant Investor Program, also known as “EB-5,” was created by Congress in 1990 to stimulate the U.S. economy through job creation and capital investment by immigrant investors by creating a “new commercial enterprise” or investing in a “troubled business”.
The Immigrant Investor Pilot Program (“Pilot Program”) was created by Congress in 1992, and has to be re-authorized every three years. EB-5 requirements for an investor under the Pilot Program are essentially the same as in the basic EB-5 investor program, except the Pilot Program provides for investments that are affiliated with an economic unit known as a “Regional Center”. These investments allow for a less restrictive job creation requirement based upon the creation of “direct” AND “indirect” jobs.
There are 10,000 EB-5 immigrant visas available annually.
There are two distinct EB-5 pathways for an immigrant investor to gain lawful permanent residence for themselves and their immediate family—the Basic Program and the Regional Center Pilot Program. Both programs require that the immigrant make a capital investment of either $500,000 or $1,000,000 (depending on whether the investment is in a Targeted Employment Area [TEA] or not) in a new commercial enterprise located within the United States.
TEA is defined by law as “a rural area or an area that has experienced high unemployment of at least 150% of the national average.”
The new commercial enterprise must create or preserve 10 full-time jobs for qualifying U.S. workers within two years (or under certain circumstances, within a reasonable time after the two year period) of the immigrant investor’s admission to the United States as a Conditional Permanent Resident (CPR).