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How do I find the right business for my EB-5 investment?

I have $3-4 million available to invest for the EB-5 visa, but I am confused. How do I find a legitimate, direct single company which is a good match for me? I am interested in companies involved in renewable energy, maybe in Florida or California. Once I find one, how do I transfer the capital so I can show proof of investment on my I-526 application?

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    Kyle Barella

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    You should work together with an EB-5 immigration attorney and EB-5 investment adviser to assist you in selecting a suitable project. Often, clients only work with immigration attorneys who are not licensed to provide investment advice. It is recommended you speak to an attorney and investment adviser. When you have selected an appropriate project - you will prove the transfer of funds by providing bank statements and other evidence showing the funds were invested. Please contact an immigration attorney should you have any questions.

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    Fredrick W Voigtmann

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    The USCIS maintains a list of designated regional centers on its website. Also, there are due diligence firms specializing in EB-5 projects. One of these firms can advise you on which project meets your specifications and requirements. Remember that an immigration attorney is not necessarily a financial adviser.

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    Oliver Huiyue Qiu

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    This is a rather typical question for folks interested in direct investment. By investing in the right company with a potential of technology transfer or market shares, you can also obtain the EB-5 or EB-1C green card along the way. It kills two birds with one stone. However, the kind of information may not be easy to come by. One potential source to gather such information is through the industrial association. For example in renewable energy, there is the United States Renewable Energy Association. You might need to personally attend some of the association''s events in order to get your foot into the door. Or you can simply hire an attorney or business consultant to conduct the search for you. As for the second question, to transfer the fund out of home country, it really depends on each country''s foreign currency control rule, or the lack of such rule. It has to be evaluated on a case-by-case basis. There is always a way though, no matter what.

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    Ed Beshara

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    The first step is to retain an experienced EB-5 immigration attorney. The attorney then will refer you to a registered broker dealer who has knowledge of EB-5 compliant projects in which they have conducted due diligence. The broker dealer may then refer you to an investor adviser who is licensed to advise the investor on the business and financial viability of the EB-5 business.

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    A Olusanjo Omoniyi

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    The amount you have available should qualify you to meet the EB-5 visa financial requirement. However, as part of the application for the EB-5 visa, you will have to proof that you lawfully acquired your funds. Your question can be addressed in two ways: either 1) you directly invest in a business and become owner and operator of the business, or 2) you can invest through a regional center (RC) involved in renewable energy. Advisably, in progressing further on your idea, consult an EB-5 visa attorney who can assist in accomplishing your goal. It appears you have a viable idea.

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    Salvatore Picataggio

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    From an immigration perspective, nearly any for-profit enterprise can become an EB-5 project. The project will need to be structured in a certain way and be able to create the requisite jobs, but if you find a business you are interested in and get with an immigration attorney who focuses on EB-5, you can possibly have an EB-5 project you can use as the basis of your I-526 petition.

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    Steffanie J Lewis

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    Assuming from the amount of investment you wish to make, my answer assumes that you are interested in investing in a new enterprise or a distressed existing business. In either case, locating an EB-5 investment is similar to locating any investment with the exception that, assuming you are approved by the USCIS and the U.S Department of State, you receive conditional U.S. permanent resident status. I also assume that you choose locations in Florida or California as your residence to facilitate your "hands-on" participation in the business in which you invest. Because you must generate jobs to qualify for the conditional U.S. status, you may wish to start your search by contacting the agency for economic development in both Florida and California. In California I suggest contacting the Office of Business and Economic Development located at 1325 J. Street, Suite 1800, Sacramento, CA. 95814, Tel (916) 322 0694 or (877) 345 4633. It also has a web site. If you do not wish to search through a state, in Florida I suggest you start by contacting the Florida Economic Development Council. It has a web site.

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    Lynne Feldman

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    For the EB-5 you would only need to invest $1 million ($500,000 if in a Targeted Employment Area) plus any administrative and legal fees the project is charging. There is no reason you cannot invest more to get a larger percentage of the project. An immigration attorney would work with you to find a broker to help you evaluate other direct projects that are out there, perform the due diligence etc. The project then typically has paperwork for you to sign that the immigration attorney reviews detailing how your money is to be used, any escrow arrangement for money to be refunded if the I-526 is not approved, business plan, job studies, etc. In an EB-5 case you will need to demonstrate the lawful source of your funds, so you will need to include documentation from when the money was earned (employment, inheritance, gift, whatever) through bank deposit into the account of the project in which you are investing.

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