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What are the EB-5 visa residency requirements for international students?

I will apply for an EB-5 for myself, my wife and 2 kids soon. However, my older son is studying at a university in Europe and will probably have 2 years to go after we get the visa. Will he be required to drop out of school and move to the United States to comply with EB-5 residency requirements? Or will he be allowed to stay in Europe 9 months every year to attend school until he graduates?

Answers

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    Shannon M Shepherd

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    In some cases, he may be able to apply for a reentry permit, a permit for green card holders who need to spend significant time outside the United States but do not want to abandon their status. The reentry permit is generally valid for two years.

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    Barbara Suri

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    After a person gets his residence status, he is entitled to file for a re-entry permit, which allows him to go out of the U.S. for up to two years at a time to complete whatever he needs doing before settling permanently in the U.S.

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    Julia Roussinova

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    Currently, it takes approximately 22 months for USCIS to process an I-526 petition (step 1). When your I-526 is approved, consular processing (step 2) takes approximately 2-6 months. When you and your family are admitted to the U.S. on immigrant visas, you become conditional green card holders for 2 years. You may then apply for a reentry permit for your son to allow him to study abroad up to the duration of his conditional green card. You should consult an experienced immigration attorney to assist you with the immigration process.

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    Fredrick W Voigtmann

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    Lawful permanent residents (even conditional ones) are expected to have the intention to permanently reside in the United States. There is a procedure to apply for and obtain a reentry permit, which is valid for reentry by a permanent resident within two years. Your older son (I assume he is under 21 years of age) can apply from within the United States and receive the reentry permit for finishing his education abroad (if it can be completed and he can return before the reentry permit expires). Without a reentry permit, a lawful permanent resident should not be absent from the United States for more than 180 days on any given trip/absence abroad, and he or she should still maintain the intention to permanently reside in the United States.

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    Charles Foster

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    Your oldest son, who may qualify for Lawful Permanent Residency or a so-called green card through the EB-5 Immigrant Investor Program as your derivative (provided that he is under the age of 21), may be eligible to obtain his conditional permanent residency at the same time you do either at the time of the immigrant visa interview or, if in the U.S., through an Adjustment of Status. Once he enters the U.S. and becomes a Lawful Permanent Resident, he has the right to travel in and out of the U.S. and, under certain conditions, may be able to return to complete his studies at a university in Europe. While it may not be convenient, when he does depart the U.S. to complete his studies, it would be best for him to try to return to the U.S periodically. He should not stay out of the U.S. continuously for more than 6 months and, in no event, more than 12 months. In this case, that would only require him to return once during his 9 months of study every year until he graduates.

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    BoBi Ahn

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    He can file for a reentry permit, which would allow him to keep his permanent residence status in the U.S. and finish his schooling abroad. Reentry permits are granted in 2-year increments.

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    A Olusanjo Omoniyi

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    There are no specific requirements for international students within EB-5. In cases where a beneficiary needs to live outside the United States after he or she has been granted an immigrant visa to enter the U.S., it is advisable that parole documents should be obtained. In this particular circumstance, dropping out of school is not necessary. Consult your EB-5 attorney for proper planning.

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    David B Gardner

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    This is determined case by case. Your son could immigrate with you and file for a reentry permit, which would cover the period he is overseas.

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    Ying Lu

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    After you get your conditional green cards, your son can apply for a re-entry permit. The re-entry permit will allow him to leave the U.S. for more than a year. It is also renewable.

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    Rebecca Singh

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    If still attending university, your son will be able to complete his courses in Europe. He can opt to join later (follow to join rather than accompanying), but you must be careful so that he does not age out or he will not be able to receive the visa (21 years and older). The better choice is to accompany his family. He can maintain his residency by visiting the U.S. during holidays (at least an entry every 6 months) or, if he cannot travel to the U.S. for an extended period, he can apply for the reentry permit, but he must be present in the U.S. prior to applying for this permit. Further, once he obtains the visa, he has six months for his first entry.

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    Mitch Wexler

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    No, your son will not have to drop out of school to attain and retain his green card. The immigrant visa he will be issued will be valid for 6 months. He should enter the U.S. within that period to attain conditional green card status. Once your older son enters the U.S. as a conditional resident, he can apply for a Reentry Permit which puts USCIS on notice that he has no intention of abandoning his green card status even though he might be out of the U.S. for an extended period. The permit is valid for 2 years. A second one can even be issued if necessary.

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    Dale Schwartz

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    When your family gets green cards, your son in Europe will also receive one. If he is in Europe, he can make a quick trip to the United States (about 2-3 weeks of time) and apply for a REENTRY PERMIT. This will allow him to stay in Europe for to 2 years and he can return to the USA at any time. It can be renewed for another 2 years each time it is about to expire.

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    Bernard P Wolfsdorf

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    Permanent resident children are given more latitude to be abroad when they need to finish their studies. However, it is still advisable to get a reentry permit and, even then, I would advise not to be out for more than 5 months. Absences of 6 months or more can impact eligibility for U.S. naturalization.

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    Jinhee Wilde

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    He may continue to remain in Europe to finish his schooling. If he visits the U.S. at least once a year, there is no requirement to obtain a reentry permit, either.

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