Additional Clarifications of the New 2022 EB-5 Program
On March 11, 2022, the E-5 immigrant investor program was re-authorized for five years as a gateway for foreign investors, seeking permanent residency in the United States. These investors, alongside their families, gain eligibility by injecting, a specified Capital amount into a new commercial enterprise, thereby generating a minimum of 10 jobs within the US economy. This program, overseen by the US Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS), offers two main pathways: the standard, or stand alone, method, and the most common Regional Center pooled investment program.
The EB-5 reform and Integrity Act of 2022 emerged as a game changer with this program, introducing pivotal changes. One significant alteration involved, revising the minimum investment thresholds. The Act established new criteria, setting the minimum investment at $1,050,000 or $800,000 in Targeted Employment Areas (TEAs) or infrastructure projects, periodically, adjusting these figures to account for inflation every five years. Some of the highlights of the act will be further explained below.
A crucial focus of the Act lay in refining the designation process for TEAs, with USCIS getting so authority to identify high employment areas. This move aimed to align more closely with the economic distress indicators, promoting investment in areas requiring revitalization and job creation. Additionally, the Act allocated exclusive visa set-asides for investors in TEAs, expediting immigration processes for individuals from certain countries.
Efforts to streamline the application process were also central to the Act’s following reforms.
To get in line for a visa, you need to submit Form I-526E. This form requires you to have either invested the minimum amount or be actively working on investing it. If you want to apply now, but don’t have all the money, you can partially invest and finish within a year. The key is to show that you have the funds identified and that you’re in the process of investing and transferring them.
To get in line for a visa, you need to submit form I-526E. This form requires you to have either invested the minimum amount or be actively working on investing it. If you want to apply now, but don’t have all the money, you can partially invest and finish within a year. The key is to show that you have the funds identified and that you’re in the process of investing and transferring them.
RCs for all Pools
After the new rules are in place, if two or more EB-5 investors join together for an investment, they must have sponsorship from a Regional Center (RC). This RC has to meet new requirements, including submitting a project model, though approval isn’t needed before the filing the I-526 form. Simple direct pool investments won’t be allowed, even if friends plan to work together in the business. Also, individual investors can’t use indirect setups or indirect job creation methods through an RC’s sponsorship.
It introduced concurrent visa filing, allowing applicants who were generally in the U.S. on temporary work or student visas to simultaneously seek residency status adjustments while their EB five petitions were under review. This adjustment aimed to facilitate swifter access to employment, authorizations and travel permits per foreign nationals pursuing investments in the US.
The Act didn’t merely focus on facilitating investor entry, but also prioritized program. Integrity measures include stringent, background, checks, and inspections, aiming to deter fraudulent activities, and ensure compliance with the program regulations.
Recent updates, following the Act’s implementation shed light on evolving facets, such as alterations to the sustainment period for investments, expedited processing post-Act applications, and increased EB-5 visa numbers in the upcoming fiscal year. Additionally, the Act offers provisions aimed add providing relief to investors affected by the termination of Regional Centers, aiming to protect the interests of those invested in such projects.
Ultimately, the legislative reforms sought to refine the EBI program, enhancing its efficiency, integrity, and overall economic impact. These alterations present both challenges and opportunities for investors and developers, while contributing significantly to the broader economic growth, trajectory of the United States.