The USA EB-5 visa program was established by the US Congress in 1990 with two main objectives. Essentially, this would be a way to inject capital into the US economy. On the other hand, the USA EB-5 visa program would help create more jobs and curb unemployment. This visa category is very popular with high-net-worth individuals. Candidates who meet the requirements for the EB-5 visa can also get a Green Card for himself or herself and their immediate family i.e their spouse and unmarried children under the age of 21. The process is quite simple but It is advisable to hire the service of an immigration lawyer to help you understand how to apply for an EB-5 visa.
Step 1: Determine where and how the investment is to be made
The first step to applying for an EB-5 visa is to find a profitable company or business you want to invest in. On the other hand, you may opt to invest in a regional center. However, you may be requested to invest a certain amount the amount which will be placed in an escrow account.
Step 2: File the I-526 petition
In the second step, you are to request for a Green Card. It is advisable to ask an immigration lawyer or an expert to help complete this form. The application should be filed with the USCIS or U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services.
While doing so, a Receipt Number will be sent to track the application. The processing time usually take as much as 18 months.
Step 3: Apply for Lawful Permanent Residence or Adjustment of Status
When the petition or request is accepted, the applicant and his immediate family can apply for Lawful Permanent Residence if they live outside the USA or an Adjustment of Status if they have non-immigrant status in the USA. This visa application is valid for a period of two years.
If it’s an application for Lawful Permanent Residence status, the I-526 form will have to be submitted to the National Visa Center.
Sometimes an interview and medical examination may also be needed. If the applicant or investor’s status is to be adjusted, the I-485 form will have to be submitted with the USCIS.
Step 4: Apply for Unconditional Permanent Residency
Once the investor/applicant has conditional resident status, the investor will have two years to make the necessary investment and fulfill the job creation criteria. Once all the conditions for the BE-5 visa program are fulfilled, the investor may apply for unconditional Permanent Residency. To apply for this, the I-829 form will be required to be completed and submitted.
This should be done at least 90 days prior to the expiration of the conditional resident status. Once approved the investor, his or her spouse and unmarried children under the age of 21 years will be offered a Green Card. The processing time for this can take between 6 to 8 months.
Step 5: Citizenship
After residing in the United States for a minimum period of 5 years as a permanent resident, the investor and his or her spouse and unmarried children u can apply for US citizenship.