+1-800-997-1228
Questions & Answers

What are the most common immigration investment visas in the United States aside from EB-5?

I am interested in pursuing citizenship in the United States via business investments, but I want to understand all my options before moving forward. What are other common investment immigration avenues that will lead to a green card/eventual citizenship in the United States?

Answers

  • Avatar

    Irina Lust

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    Two direct paths to a green card and eventual citizenship are EB-5 Immigrant Investor Program and the EB1C visa for multinational executives and managers. Two more indirect paths are the L-1 (Non-Immigrant Intra-company Transferee) and the E-2 visa (Non-Immigrant Treaty Investor) if applicable.

  • Avatar

    BoBi Ahn

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    One option would be to start a subsidiary/branch office in the U.S. of a company based abroad and apply for an L-1 intracompany transfer (if you have been employed the foreign entity for more than one year). Then, through this subsidiary/branch, start employment-based green card processing as a priority worker.

  • Avatar

    A Olusanjo Omoniyi

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    Generally, only EB-5 leads to an immigrant visa (green card) through investment.

  • Avatar

    Charles Foster

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    One of the primary motivations for immigrating to the U.S. is to invest and start a business, as well as to obtain a green card. To acquire Lawful Permanent Residency, or green card status, an immigrant can invest in an EB-5 Regional Center project given the fact that it does not require the investor to take any risk in developing his or her own business, nor be responsible for employing 10 full-time U.S. workers and maintaining them for some indefinite period. With wise counsel, one can choose a relatively secure EB-5 project that grants a high degree of confidence not only that the EB-5 Petition on Form I-526 will be approved, but that, after a 5-year or otherwise agreed upon period, there is a high probability that the investor will recoup his invested funds along with a nominal interest rate.

  • Avatar

    Lynne Feldman

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    E-2 is a nonimmigrant visa and only available to nationals of certain countries. If you invest enough money over time and create the requisite number of jobs, sometimes that can lead to an EB-5 filing. L-1A is another common immigration path for those who have an overseas business and can set up a branch in the United States or for those who work for a company that has an affiliate office in the U.S.

  • Avatar

    Shenila A Momin

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    Besides the EB-5 investor visa, you may qualify for EB1-3, Managerial or Executive, visa, of which you must provide evidence of your foreign business and prove that the U.S. enterprise is a subsidiary or affiliate of the foreign company. You will also have to prove that you (1) have served as an executive or high-level manager in your foreign enterprise for at least one year prior to filing and (2) you will serve as an executive or high-level manager in the U.S. enterprise.

  • Avatar

    Julia Roussinova

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    In addition to the EB-5 visa, you may consider the L-1A visa for intracompany transferees (managers or executives) or E-1/E-2 visas for treaty traders/investors, if eligible. Through several steps, L-1A visas lead to permanent residence and, subsequently, U.S. citizenship. The E visa does not directly lead to permanent residence in the U.S. but may be structured to qualify for subsequent EB-5 petition filing to become a conditional permanent resident, then a permanent resident and eventually a U.S. citizen. You should consult an experienced immigration attorney to discuss your specific situation and possible immigration options.

  • Avatar

    Mitch Wexler

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    Aside from EB-5, one can achieve U.S. residency and/or citizenship through other immigration vehicles such as (1) L-1. If your overseas employer (or your company) establishes an affiliated entity in the U.S., you can be transferred over to play a key role in the U.S. enterprise with an L-1 visa. After a year, if the U.S. enterprise has developed enough, it can sponsor you for a green card in the EB1C green card category. There are also (2) E-2 treaty visas. If your country of citizenship is party to a treaty with the U.S. that includes an E-2 provision in it, you can invest in starting up or acquiring an existing U.S. business and apply for an E-2 nonimmigrant visa. However, be aware the E-2 is not designed to be a stepping stone to a green card. So, if that becomes an objective, proper planning and analysis will be required. There is also the (3) direct EB1C. If your overseas employer buys a sufficiently developed U.S. entity that has been doing business over 1 year, it can file an EB1C green card petition and bypass L-1 or any other nonimmigrant visa category. Next, there is (4) EB1A. This is a self-sponsored green card option for those who possess extraordinary ability in a certain field if they intend on continuing to work in that field upon immigrating. So, a foreign national can invest in the same type of business in the U.S. and potentially self-sponsor their own green card if they can establish this high standard. Finally, there is the (5) National Interest Waiver (NIW). This is another self-sponsored green card option for those working in a meaningful capacity in a field of compelling national interest.

  • Avatar

    Bernard P Wolfsdorf

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    The EB-5 program is the only immigrant investor visa program. Technically, if you are a senior manager of a multinational company that invests in the United States by opening a branch office that gains several US employees, you might be eligible for an EB-1A multi-national manager/executive green card.

  • Avatar

    Abhinav Lohia

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    There are many paths that can be pursued for a business-based green card. I am listing the two most popular ones here: (1) the EB-5 visa, which requires an investment of $500,000 in targeted employment areas (TEA) or $1,000,000 in non-TEAs. It also requires that the project creates at least 10 new, full-time jobs for United States citizens. (2) the EB1C, or the employment-based immigration petition, which is for exceptional international managers and executives. This is not investment-based, but based on qualifications as an executive or a manager in a foreign company for a period of one year and moving to a related U.S. company in a similar capacity.

  • Avatar

    Ian E Scott

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    EB-2, a national interest waiver for entrepreneurs, is an option to consider for investors like yourself.

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.