8 FAQs About EB5 Regional Centers

An EB5 regional center can help investors and their families attain United States green cards through the EB5 program. Regional centers also help investors understand the financial and legal requirements of the EB5 process. Here are 8 FAQs about regional centers and their role in the EB5 visa program:

1. What Is an EB5 Regional Center?

An EB5 regional center is a system created by the United States Citizenship and Immigration Services agency, USCIS, that assists foreign investors throughout the EB5 Immigrant Investor Program. Regional centers can be private or public enterprises that help boost economic growth in a specific area by facilitating EB5 projects.

2. How Does a Regional Center Operate?

EB5 regional centers combine investments made by several different investors to finance projects they have chosen in their geographical location. These centers can choose projects like real estate and infrastructure development. Those who work for the regional center manage the project and oversee the investment process. Regional centers also make sure that each EB5 requirement and step is completed accurately.

3. How Do I Find a Valid Regional Center?

Investors interested in going through the EB5 process with the help of a regional center can find one on the USCIS website. The USCIS website can show investors a list of valid, certified regional centers in their desired area. Investors can view the centers’ past projects and success rates. Consider reaching out to other foreign investors who worked with that specific regional center to learn about their experience. Investors can also seek a reputable immigration attorney for advice on choosing a good EB5 regional center.

4. Why Should I Invest Through an EB5 Regional Center?

Several advantages exist for investors who choose to invest through a regional center. Here are some of the reasons to work with a regional center:

  • Investors can live anywhere within the U.S. when they choose a regional center. Because regional centers manage the day-to-day operations of the investment project, investors can play a passive role in the project and reside wherever they please.
  • Investors have the opportunity to choose a project that lowers the investment amount. Target employment areas, or TEAs, have a higher unemployment rate, and projects in these areas have a lower investment minimum.
  • Investors may also benefit from a regional center’s expert advice. Those who work within a regional center are familiar with the EB5 program’s financial and legal requirements and can guide investors through the complex visa application process.
  • Investors may be able to meet the requirements of creating 10 full-time positions more quickly with the help of a regional center. Projects developed through a regional center can create direct and indirect jobs that help investors meet employment requirements.

5. How Much Do I Need To Invest?

The minimum investment amount needed to meet the EB5 green card requirement is $800,000 for a TEA. The minimum requirement for projects not within a TEA is $1.05 million. Investors can find more information on regional centers specializing in TEA projects through the USCIS website.

6. How Long Is the Process?

Investors can expect to wait approximately 18-30 months from the beginning of the EB5 process to having their I-829 petition approved. The first step in the process is investors consulting with a regional center to make sure they are qualified to apply for the program. After determining their eligibility, investors can invest and file for a conditional green card with the I-526 E form. Once the conditional green card is received, investors can live in the U.S. for two years. After this period, they must submit an I-829 petition for a green card without conditions.

7. Who Gets a Green Card?

Individual investors and their families can get green cards through the EB5 visa program. Investors’ children that are under the age of 21 and unmarried may be eligible for green cards. After receiving their own, investors can also sponsor other family members’ green cards.

8. Who Runs Regional Centers?

The management team of an EB5 regional center may include professionals with knowledge in various fields, such as real estate development, finance, law, marketing, and immigration. These different regional center professionals specialize in making sure that investors’ EB5 processes go smoothly.

EB5 Investors and Regional Centers

Investors who work with a regional center for their EB5 investment can experience several benefits during their visa application process. These benefits include living wherever they want within the U.S., having the option to invest less money, and meeting employment requirements through indirect and direct jobs. The EB5 green card program is complex, but having an entire center of EB5 professionals on your side can help your visa process move more smoothly. Contact a regional center today to learn more about their processes and the types of projects they offer.


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