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Questions & Answers

How long is an EB-5 visa holder tied to their investment project?

If I invest in an EB-5 project to get my green card, how long do I have to keep that investment in the project? Am I able to get that investment back once the EB-5 process is over and I have legal permanent residency?

Answers

  • Avatar

    Reza Rahbaran

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    Your investment will be tied up for the duration of your conditional residence, which is two years. Once the condition is removed, then your exit will depend on the terms of the project. Remember that the investment must be at risk and no guarantee can be given on the return of your investment for EB-5 purposes.

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    Jeffrey E Campion

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    Your money must be at risk at least and until you receive your permanent green card. So, that is normally about 3-4 years. Thereafter, you may look to exit the investment.

  • Avatar

    Jinhee Wilde

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    It depends on how the investment is structured. Most of the older EB-5 regional centers have had their projects on Long-term Equity basis on their earlier projects. This means unless there are other investors that could take your place or the project could be sold in its entirety, there is no way to get the money out. It is my understanding that while these investors could not get the principal investment back, they have been enjoying the return on their investment, however. Most of the regional centers recently have been doing either the Loan based projects or Short Term equity where there is an exit date specified at 5-7 year after you invest. This forces the regional center and developers to set aside repayment amount each year or refinance at the end of the term. Thus, when you are reviewing the regional center projects, make sure they explain to your satisfaction their exit strategy, i.e., how they will return your money.

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    Lynne Feldman

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    Each project will have its own rules on exit strategy which you should inquire about. Your money must be at risk and there cannot be a guaranteed right of return or it won''t qualify for EB-5 status.

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    Hendrick Pretorius

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    This is in part dependent on the EB-5 regional center and the agreement you have with them. The investment must be with an EB-5 enterprise for at minimum two years as this investment must be used and shown to create at least the ten qualifying jobs. Beyond that there are many variations that exist in terms of exit strategies.

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    Rohit Kapuria

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    The term depends on the time it takes to get actual permanent residency + any relevant agreed upon extensions with the developer. Quite simply, the investor first receives conditional residency. Thereafter, the investor will have to apply within 24 months for removal of the conditional residency. If the conditional removal application is approved (on the basis of the investor demonstrating that his/her investment created 10 jobs), then permanent residency is granted. It is only after this grant that the investor may receive his/her investment + any agreed upon interest rate (usually the interest, if any, is not substantial). As for the actual return of funds, that depends on the actual subscription agreement that the investor signs. Generally, you should plan for your funds to be invested for at least 5 years with a possible 1-2 year extension.

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    Rachel Lew

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    If you choose a regional center affiliated project to invest, the average investment has to be tied up for about 4-5 years. Because the EB-5 program requires that the investment fund be at risk, there should not be any guarantee of return of the investment by the regional center. Before you invest in any project affiliated with a regional center, you should review their Operating Agreement or Partnership Agreement to find out about how the profits of the company in the form of dividends and losses are distributed and allocated to members or partners. The chances of you getting all or part of your investment back really depends on the type and nature of the business invested, such as like deciding to invest stocks in Apple or HP or Facebook companies. It is your choice to make.

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    Stephen Berman

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    You can get the money back then, yes.

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    Fredrick W Voigtmann

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    Yes. You are tied to the project for as long as it takes to get your condition removed on your lawful permanent residency.

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    Michael A Harris

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    Your investment needs to be maintained for the duration of your conditional residency. As you may be aware, simply filing and having the I-526 approved does not end the EB-5 process. You will need to petition to remove the conditions on your residence within 90 days of your two year anniversary of the grant of residence or your admission into the U.S. as a conditional LPR. When the conditions are removed, you will need to inquire with the project offering agreement you signed as your funds could be tied up.

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    Neville M Leslie

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    Usually approximately 5 years.

  • Avatar

    Andrew J Fishkin

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    You must wait until after the removal of conditions is approved. That is approximately two years after your green card is issued.

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    Shahzad Q Qadri

    RC Creator
    Answered on

    In order to get your permanent green card you are looking at about 3 year but it really depends on the offering.

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