How To Get USA Investor Visa?

The United States of America has become known by many people as the land of opportunities. The country has secured this name for many reasons, ranging from limitless work choices, exceptional education opportunities, and top-rated living standards. Along with everything else, it has a massive reputation as a thriving economy and a startup hub. Indeed, the United States is the perfect choice to kindle your entrepreneurial spirits. The country has one of the strongest currencies in the world, which makes it a wise choice for those looking beyond just a simple investment. If you are seeking an answer to the question of how to get a USA investor visa then you are at the right place. In this article, we will discuss at length the eb-5 investment visa, which is an ideal option for people looking for a green card with minimum investment

If you look back at history, the US is a nation of immigrants. Of the total population, 62 percent are of European descent, 16 percent are Hispanic, 13 percent are African-American, and 5 percent are Asian. The eb-5 Investment visa enables you to acquire a permanent residence with a minimum investment amount. Also, your contribution will be returned after the investment project is completed.

Another tempting reason to get the eb-5 visa is that, US ranks 1st in the Global Passport Index ranking. With a US passport, you can travel to 172 countries worldwide visa-free. The US passport is one of the strongest passports in the world, the stronger the passport, the greater number of opportunities open to you.

Take a look at our ultimate guide to the US passport index.

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Global Citizen Solutions created a pioneering Global Passport Index that goes beyond simple visa-free access. Our Global Passport Index incorporates investment opportunities, quality of life, and enhanced mobility.

How to apply for an eb-5 visa?

The eb-5 visa is an investor visa, offered to those who are seeking US citizenship by investment.  In the next few paragraphs, we will provide you with information on the eb-5 Visa, how to apply for it, and further details that you should be aware of.

eb-5 visa in a nutshell

The eb-5 visa is also known as the USA investor visa or US golden visa. This visa is ideal for wealthy internationals who are keen on getting American citizenship or a green card. Take a look at our detailed guides on the Investment green card and How to get a green card?  to learn more about the US green card. In order to get the eb-5, you need to pay the US investor cost by making a substantial investment in the US. Holding an eb-5 visa enables you to live, work, study, or retire in the US without having an employer.

EB5 investment visa

Here are the key prerequisites for you to be eligible for the eb-5 visa.

  • To be eligible for the eb-5 visa, you must make an investment of $900,000 in the Targeted Employment Area (TEA), or $1.8 million outside TEA.
  • Your investment must create at least 10 American full-time jobs for at least two years.
  • Your investment money must have been earned legally.
  • The investment must be approved by U.S Citizenship and Immigration Services.
  • The enterprise that you are investing in must have been established after 1990 and must be a “for-profit” new commercial enterprise.
  • The investment must be “at-risk”, which means there is no guarantee of the capital investment return.

Once you are eligible for the eb-5 visa, you are allowed to live in the US with a green card, along with your dependent family members mentioned in the application. Your dependent family members will also receive a green card. The US issues 10,000 eb-5 investment visas per year, including the dependant family members visas.

After settling your investment, gather the required documents and apply for the eb-5 visa.

Steps to apply for the eb-5 visa

Once you have met the requirements, you can apply for the eb-5 visa. Read the following to understand the steps to apply for a US investor visa.

1. You need to apply for the eb-5 visa from the U.S Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) website, by filling the Form I-526 which is the application form for the investment visa.

2. After filling out the application, you need to mail it to their mailing address, which may be updated from time to time. You can find the latest mailing address on the USCIS website.

3. After reviewing your application, the USCIS will forward it to the National Visa Centre (NVC).

4. If all the information you provided is correct, the NVC will contact you to pay the relevant visa cost and submit the required documents. The payment process will be explained by the NVC.

5. Once everything is done, you must apply for an immigrant visa, and then the US Embassy will schedule an interview with you. The NVC will inform you of the date, time, and location along with other requirements for the interview.

6. If the interview goes well, you will be issued the Immigrant Investor visa, which is also a two-year green card.

Note:

  • If you are already in the US, instead of applying at the US embassy, you need to file Form I-485 with the USCIS. Form I-485 is the adjustment of the status application form.
  • If you are outside the US, your first point of reference is the US Embassy in your country.

Dependents of the eb-5 visa holders

Once you have the EB-visa, you can take your spouse and children with you as your dependants.

Along with you, your spouse is eligible for both conditional and permanent residence, provided that you both are married at the time you enter the US as a resident or when your status changes from conditional to permanent resident after two years. Further, same-sex spouses are also qualified. However, a common-law (couple considered married, but, has not registered as a civil or religious marriage) spouse does not qualify.

Your children below 21 years of age can also be included and are eligible for conditional or permanent residence. You must show proof of legitimate parent lineage, which includes adopted children, birth children, and step-children. If a child is married and under the age of 21, they do not qualify for an immigrant visa.

Get to know more about the US eb-5 investor visa from our detailed guide on eb-5 investor visas.

eb-5 visa regional and direct investment

​​For you to acquire the eb-5 investor visa, there are two investment options, namely, regional investment and direct investment.

Regional investment in a targeted employment area

Regional Investment (regional center) is the investment that you make in a Targeted Employment Area (TEA). If you are investing in a TEA enterprise, you must invest at least $900,000, in a rural area or area with a high rate of unemployment. The area that you are investing must be approved by the government. If you invest in a TEA, you must show that your investment has created at least 10 full-time employees either directly or indirectly.

Check here to find the list of government-approved regional investment programs.

Direct investment outside the TEA

Investment outside of TEA gets qualified as a direct investment. If you are making a direct investment it should be higher than the regional investment amount by at least two times or 1.8 million USD.

EB5 Investment

As a part of your direct investment, you can build your own company in the US, or invest in other existing US companies, but, you must ensure that you meet the USCIS requirements. Direct investments can be made in restaurants, franchise businesses, IT companies, retail store chains, etc. Irrespective of the type of your direct investment, you must show that your investment has created at least 10 full-time jobs directly.

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How much money do you need for an investor visa?

In addition to the investment amount that starts from $90000 (TEA) and $1.8 million (direct) and the creation of 10 full-time positions, there is the visa application fee which costs around $3675 per applicant. Apart from this we also have administrative fees, medical examination fees, form processing fees, etc.

How long does it take to get an investor visa in the US?

It takes an average of 13 months to get an eb-5 investor visa, from the time of your application submission with the USCIS.

How long can I stay in the US with the eb-5 visa?

Initially, after receiving the green card via eb-5 visa, you will acquire a conditional residency, that is valid for two years. In this two years period, you can live, study, and work in the US, but you cannot stay out of the US for more than a year. After two years, you can apply for an unconditional or permanent residence, which gives you a 10-year green card. The unconditional or permanent residency can be renewed continuously.

Can I live anywhere in the US with the eb-5 visa?

Yes, with an eb-5 visa, you can live, study, and work anywhere in the US. If your investment is in the regional center, then it is not necessary to live in the same state where you have invested. However, if your investment is direct, you must stay near the commercial enterprise you invested in, as you have to show your active role in the company.

Can I get American citizenship with the eb-5 visa?

Yes, you can apply for US citizenship after five years of holding the unconditional residency status (10 years green card). In other words, you must live in America for 7 years to apply for citizenship.

Can I have access to US healthcare with the eb-5 visa?

Yes, you will have access to US healthcare with the eb-5 visa. However, healthcare costs in the US are the highest in the world. You will need to get a suitable health insurance plan.