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What happens if an investor bypasses the EB-5 regional center?

I found an interesting EB-5 investment opportunity. Can I bypass the regional center and connect with the party that is directly in charge of the project? Is there any requirement that the EB-5 investor has to work directly with the regional center?

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    Salvatore Picataggio

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    EB-5 investments can be into a project affiliated with a regional center or into a project that is not affiliated with a regional center (known as a "direct" project). If the project is affiliated with a regional center, they will be involved no matter what, but the level of involvement depends on the particular deal you are looking at.

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    Marisa Casablanca

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    There are two types of EB-5 investments. One is the pilot program which involves a regional center. The other is the original program for individual investments. You may qualify for the original program, which does not involve a regional center, but you would have to have the project reviewed by a qualified immigration attorney.

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    Charles Foster

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    Yes, of course you can bypass an EB-5 regional center and make a direct EB-5 investment. In such case, you have to demonstrate that the investment results in the creation of 10 direct jobs for U.S. workers over the required period of time. No, there is no requirement that the EB-5 investor has to work directly with the regional center. In fact, that would almost never happen. Most investors in regional centers are limited partners.

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    Lynne Feldman

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    Not at all.

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    Peter Zhang

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    You will not be able to bypass the regional center if the project you are investing in is listed under that regional center. However, if you have prior association with the project developer, you may be able to have them waive some of your administrative fees.

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    Bernard P Wolfsdorf

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    If it is a regional center case, meaning they are likely using indirect jobs, I am not sure how you can "bypass" the regional center. They have to provide documents and assist in coordinating the application. If you starting a brand new business and will hire 10 full-time eligible workers, then arguably you do not need a regional center.

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    Debbie Klis

    Securities Attorney
    Answered on

    That is a very interesting proposition. No, there is no requirement that the EB-5 investor work directly with the regional center. You mentioned that you found an interesting EB-5 investment opportunity, which means that perhaps the project already linked up with a regional center and prepared an investment structure and offering documents. If so, there might be some push-back to revising the business plan, PPM etc. to accommodate a direct investment. However, if your investment is sizeable or you can bring other value to the project. On the other hand, most projects are eager to fill their investment amount, so they might be open to amending the documents and incurring the legal fees to accommodate your investment even if you are the only direct investor and you are investing just the minimum amount. If they agreed to it, you can bypass the regional center and invest directly in the project if the project owner creates a tranche of preferred which is redeemable. I hope this is helpful.

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    Jinhee Wilde

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    Direct EB-5 investment is a permanent program and will not change. Any investor may do direct investment with a new business entity that will create 10+ permanent, full-time jobs.

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    Vaughan de Kirby

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    You can invest in a new commercial enterprise that creates ten jobs. A regional center is not required. However, in this case, you must directly create 10 jobs for each qualifying investment. I recommend you seek the counsel of an experienced investment immigration attorney.

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