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How can someone without an employment history apply for EB-5?

My son is a college student in the third year in China. I would like to give him $500,000 to apply for the EB-5 visa through a direct investment project (restaurant). He has never earned any income or had employment experience. Will USCIS disqualify him based on his lack of employment and management experience? What do we do if he has no financial records?

Answers

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    Ed Beshara

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    An experienced EB-5 immigration attorney will be able to advise you on how your son may become an EB-5 investor. You may gift the required funds to your son and he may directly invest these funds into a direct EB-5 project. The son does not have to play the major managerial role and he may participate with a minor role.

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    Salvatore Picataggio

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    I am more concerned with the lack of financial records, as the authentication of the source of investment funds is a strict requirement. Based on these issues, it is best to retain qualified EB-5 counsel to assist and represent you.

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    Julia Roussinova

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    It may be best to structure your son''s EB-5 investment through a gift from a parent. There is no particular requirement that an EB-5 investor possess a level of education or employment experience. Please consult an experienced EB-5 attorney.

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    Wilka Toppins

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    If you handle this through a parental gift - there is no issue with the investor not having his own money. Funds for EB-5 can originate from a gift. In that case, USCIS will want to know where the donor obtained the funds. On your question regarding the experience - if your son has no restaurant or management experience or education in the area, it may present a problem since in a direct investment, USCIS expects the investor to "direct and develop" the enterprise. They may think that he will not have the knowledge nor the experience to direct and develop the enterprise and that therefore, jobs will not be maintained or created and as you know the job creation is very important. I suggest you call for a specific consultation if you need more detail on how to deal with this potential situation.

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    Oliver Huiyue Qiu

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    The short answer to your question is No Problem. Your question touches upon two issues: (1) What level of involvement your son needs to show as an EB-5 investor with the enterprise (2) How to establish the source of fund if it is not earned by your son. With regard to the first question, an EB-5 investor must be involved in the enterprise by either exercising managerial control of the day-to-day operations OR through policy formulation. An investor must be "actively involved in the business;" a purely passive investor may not qualify for the EB-5 classification. About your second question, like many people who had successfully obtained approvals for their sons and daughters, parents can gift the entire $500,000 to the child to be used in the EB-5 investment. In that case, the focus will be shifted from your son to you - the parent, as to how you earned the money.

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    Jinhee Wilde

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    We successfully file cases for students all the time with gift of investment funds from their parents, particularly to an EB-5 investment managed by a regional center. Because the funds are ultimately from the parents, we need to show the legal source of your income and assets and track from your account to your son"s and then to the EB-5 investment account. Because there is no particular management eligibility for an EB-5 investor, your son having no employment or management experience is not grounds for denial.

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    Fredrick W Voigtmann

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    There is no requirement for employment experience or education in order to become an EB-5 investor. As for the source of funds, it will be a gift from you to your son. However, the USCIS will want to see evidence that you lawfully obtained the capital you gifted to your son.

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    Ian E Scott

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    An EB-5 direct investor does not have to have experience but the lack of experience could impact the credibility of the business plan if he is the only manager. To the extent that there are other managers or people that would make the business viable and able to create 10 full-time jobs, you should not have a problem. The picture is always clearer though when the applicant has the experience required to run the business. You should also note that EB-5 investment cannot be passive, but based on what you have written you should not have a problem. Your son does not need financial records as you are gifting the money. As such, the source of funds documentation will relate to you and you will provide tax returns or other proof that the funds came from a legitimate source.

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    Lynne Feldman

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    We would normally do a gift letter between you and your son and show where you obtained the funds lawfully. The direct investment for $500,000 will only work if the restaurant is located in an area designated as a TEA by the State. If it is a direct project your son will be expected to be onsite running things so he should be involved in developing the business plan, setting up the restaurant and figuring out how to make it successful and employ 10 full time people (80 percent of restaurants fail in the 1st year). So it is important to have a solid business or else he will get the two year green card, but not be able to keep the business going and employ 10 full-time people to get the 10 year green card three years later.

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    James Zhou

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    Your son will not be disqualified for the lack of employment or management experience. Neither will he be disqualified for the lack of financial records. There is no such requirement for an EB-5 investor. On the other hand, he will need records to show the lawful source of his investment fund, which can be the financial records of yours.

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    BoBi Ahn

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    For EB-5 purposes, your son''s lack of work history would not be a relevant factor as long as the required elements for the EB-5 immigrant investor visa are met. He should however show that he will have an active management role in the business in order to qualify for the EB-5, but no experience is necessary.

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    Stephen Berman

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    There is no requirement for an applicant to show that they have the requisite skills to manage their investment, to get an EB-5 visa.

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    Sufen Hilf

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    Probably not. If he has no employment history, you will have to gift the half a million to him, which is fine.

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    Anthony Korda

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    You will be able to make a gift to your son. However, you will have to show a lawful source of the funds if your son''s I-526 is to be approved. Depending on the project chosen, you may have to make a gift of $1 million as many projects only invite investment from accredited investors. For more information you should consult a qualified immigration or securities attorney.

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    Olga Karasik

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    Your son can receive a gift from his parents. In that case you will need to show your financial records to evidence your legitimate source of funds.

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    Teodora Purcell

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    There is no requirement the the EB-5 investor have prior entrepreneurial or managerial experience, but you will have to show the source of the investment funds, which could be a gift. So you will have to provide relevant documentation regarding the investment and that the investor will have a policy making authority in the U.S. enterprise.

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    John J Downey

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    He can qualify - his investment is a gift from you. You will have to present all the evidence to show the source of the funds that you gift to him.

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