+1-800-997-1228
Questions & Answers

How would an F-1 application for an ELS program affect the EB-5 process?

My family has applied for the EB-5 Immigrant Investor Program. We do not know if our application will be successful. Before I get the result of this application, can I apply for an F-1 visa for a United States ELS program to improve my English skills? If I can, will the F-1 visa application affect my EB-5 application, in either a positive or negative way? What other options do I have to pursue ELS studies and gain permanent residence in the U.S.?

Answers

  • Avatar

    Salvatore Picataggio

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    An I-526 petition by itself should not trigger immigrant intent and prohibit an F-1, but you may be subject to some additional questions. Please work with an immigration attorney to help you prepare.

  • Avatar

    Ed Beshara

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    Filing an I-526 petition is not an application for permanent residency. Therefore, during the pendency of the adjudication of the I-526 petition, you can apply for an F-1 visa at the U.S. consulate. The U.S. Consul will have to believe that your intent is to come to the U.S. for a temporary period of time, study English and then return to your home country. The issuance of an F-1 visa will not affect the EB-5 process unless the F-1 entry into the U.S. was fraudulent. That is, the U. S. immigration service determines the F-1 entry was not for a temporary period but for entry into the U.S. to adjust to permanent residency in the U.S.

  • Avatar

    Julia Roussinova

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    If you are not the principal EB-5 investor who has filed an I-526 petition, then you should be able to proceed with the F-1 visa application. Otherwise, it will be difficult for you to demonstrate nonimmigrant intent to obtain an F-1 visa due to the filing of an immigrant petition such as I-526.

  • Avatar

    Charles Foster

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    If a family member has filed an EB-5 petition on Form I-526, it may ultimately lead to a final interview for the principal applicant, and his or her immediately family members. In the interim, you may apply for a non-immigrant F-1Student visa. The fact that you are part of a family that is in the process of qualifying on a long term basis for Lawful Permanent Residency through an EB-5 program could be a negative factor in qualifying for an F-1 Student visa. By definition, a "student" is someone that is planning to go to the United States on a temporary basis and has no intention of immigrating to the United States. It is possible to have "dual intent", meaning that you have short term intent to study and ultimately you will return to China even though, in the long term, you ultimately intend to apply for Lawful Permanent Residency. In your non-immigrant visa application, you must truthfully answer all questions. You may not have filed a petition but, if asked whether your family has filed a petition, you must answer truthfully.

  • Avatar

    Jinhee Wilde

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    If you are the main EB-5 investor and have submitted the I-526 petition, the Consulate officer will likely deny your F-1 visa application as you have already expressed your intention to immigrate. However, if you are not the main investor with I-526, but one of your parents are, then you should be able to get the F-1 visa as you have not submitted any immigrant visa application or petition yourself. I would advise you to apply for any program that is more than just ELS program. The Consulate officers often do not trust ELS as a legitimate student visa program.

  • Avatar

    A Olusanjo Omoniyi

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    The F-1 application should not have any effect, either negatively or positively, on the pending EB-5 Petition.

  • Avatar

    Lynne Feldman

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    You would have to convince the consulate that the ELS program is not an attempt to move to the United States and your ties abroad are strong. You can indicate you plan to consular process your I-526 if it is approved several years from now.

  • Avatar

    Vaughan de Kirby

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    If you are a derivative of your parent''s application, then you should be OK. However, do not take any action without first consulting your investment immigration attorney.

  • Avatar

    BoBi Ahn

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    There is no effect to the EB-5 process if you apply for either the F-1 and the ELS program. However, having a pending EB-5 Immigrant Petition may affect your ability to obtain the F-1 nonimmigrant visa as the United States consulate may question your "nonimmigrant intent." This can be resolved by showing current intent vs. future intent.

  • Avatar

    Stephen Berman

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    There is no harm in trying to apply for the F-1 visa. The worst that can happen is that they''ll say no. Getting the F-1 visa will not stop you from getting a green card through EB-5.

  • Avatar

    Bernard P Wolfsdorf

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    Applying for a temporary student visa after having filed for a green card can be problematic. Please make sure to disclose the green card application on your student visa application or you could be accused of misrepresentation when you apply for your green card.

Add your comment

Use a Facebook account to add a comment, subject to Facebook's Terms of Service and Privacy Policy. Your Facebook name, photo & other personal information you make public on Facebook will appear with your comment.