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What is an EB-5 investment in a "rural" area?

I would like to know what is meant exactly by a $500,000 EB-5 investment in a "rural" area. Is it referring to the purchase of a farm for livestock, or for planting and cultivation? Is it also necessary to create 10 jobs in a so-called "rural" investment?

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    Echo Meisheng King

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    By definition, "rural area" means any area not within either a metropolitan statistical area or the outer boundary of any city or town having a population of 20,000 or more. If your investment is in a rural area, the amount of the investment required is reduced to $500,000. The business does not necessarily have to be a farm; it can be any business that can create 10 full-time jobs. If you purchase an existing farm or other business that is located in a rural area, you still need to create ten new jobs, in addition to the jobs already existing before your investment.

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    Salvatore Picataggio

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    "Rural" is defined by USCIS as any area not within either a metropolitan statistical area (as designated by the Office of Management and Budget) or the outer boundary of any city or town having a population of 20,000 or more (based on the most recent decennial census of the United States). Working with immigration attorneys and an experienced economist can help with this analysis. A "rural" area project does not refer to the business activities (as they say, "location, location, location") and the 10 job requirement is the same.

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    Jinhee Wilde

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    The definition of a rural area under EB-5 is a location of 20,000 or less population. The type of business located in the rural area does not have to be farm-related. In fact, any manufacturing or logistics center where they could employ several hundred local workers would be a great example of an EB-5 investment. The TEA (rural or high unemployment area) only lowers the requisite EB-5 investment amount from $1 million to $500,000. It does not alleviate the 10+ permanent, full-time job requirement of EB-5 every EB-5 investment must create a minimum of 10 jobs.

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    Ed Beshara

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    A rural area refers to the geographical location in which the project's business activity is based. For instance, the business activity can include the construction of a hotel, assisted living facility, etc.

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    Robert Lee

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    A rural area is defined in the Immigration Act of 1990 as "any area not within either a metropolitan statistical area (as designated by the Office of Management and Budget) or the outer boundary of any city or town having a population of 20,000 or more according to the decennial census." The same requirements still apply for rural areas. You must create 10 full-time jobs. The only difference is the minimum investment amount is reduced to $500,000.

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    Daniel B Lundy

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    A "rural area" is any area outside of a metropolitan statistical area (MSA) and outside of any city or town with a population of 20,000 or more. The type of business is not relevant to the determination. Your investment of $500,000 in a rural area would still need to create at least 10 jobs for U.S. workers, just like any other EB-5 investment.

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    Bernard P Wolfsdorf

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    A rural area only allows you to invest the lower amount of $500,000. The population must be under 20,000 and outside a metropolitan statistical commuting area.

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    John J Downey

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    A rural area is determined by the Office of Management and Budget, and is based on the latest U.S census. It is based on population.

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    George Ernst

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    An investment in a "rural area" is not restricted to farming or agricultural projects, such as purchasing a farm for livestock or cultivation. Instead, to prove that a project is an a rural area, the project must demonstrate that the project is (1) not located within a metropolitan statistical area (MSA) and (2) is not located within any municipality that has a population of 20,000 or greater as defined in the most recent U.S. census. Thus, to determine whether your project meets the "rural area" definition, it is recommended that you speak with an attorney in your area with EB-5 experience who can help you determine whether your project qualifies as a "rural area" project. All EB-5 projects must create at least ten (10) U.S. jobs. There is no exemption of this requirement. However, if your project is with a regional center, then those jobs may be "indirect" jobs as well as direct jobs.

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    Ian E Scott

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    The lower EB-5 investment amount of $500,000 can be used if the area is rural and this is defined by the U.S. government. Also, an area that has 1.5 times the unemployment rate can be defined as an area that requires a lower investment amount. This is a complicated area, as all regional centers are located in these areas and some are in affluent parts of the country (e.g. Hudson Yards in Manhattan).

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