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Which name should be used for the EB-5 application?

My name (first name only) is hard to pronounce for Americans. For better communication with people after I move to the United States on an EB-5 visa, I am considering changing my first name. The question is, should I use my new first name directly on the EB-5 application form? Will there be a problem with all of the documents provided from my home country, which have my original first name? Or I should change my name later, after the EB-5 application is approved?

Answers

  • Avatar

    Marisa Casablanca

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    Your EB-5 application should match your birth certificate. You may not change on your own. You may retain an attorney in your country to change your name through a court order. In that manner, when you file for your EB-5 green card, you submit your original birth certificate and court order.

  • Avatar

    Julia Roussinova

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    A name appearing on your passport and birth certificate should be used to file I-526 petition with USCIS. Unless you have already changed your name through legal means that can be documented, such as a court order, you may not use a different name just because it is hard to pronounce.

  • Avatar

    Peter Zhang

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    You should use the name on your current passport.

  • Avatar

    Raymond Lahoud

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    It would be best to change your name either before you file or after it is approved. If doing so before you file, include the legal documents and respective court orders changing your name and include any other names you have been known by in any respective applications. Do not complete applications alone - it is important that you seek out competent immigration counsel.

  • Avatar

    A Olusanjo Omoniyi

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    While your idea is a good gesture, be careful about changing your name. Changing your name just because people may be unable to pronounce it is not a valid reason. You will need to hold to your name as you will have to tender several of your documents in so many places. If your change your name at this moment, each time you offer the new name, you will have to explain why the name on your documents is different. The need to explain becomes repetitive and endless. Advisably, do not change your name!

  • Avatar

    Charles Foster

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    All of your documentation, including your EB-5 investor petition on Form I-526, should be in your legal name irrespective of the difficulty of pronunciation. Your legal name is the one that normally would be reflected on your birth certificate and other official documents, including your passport. You could only use another name if there is a legal document showing that a court with proper jurisdiction or other compelling authority changed your name from X to Y.

  • Avatar

    Jinhee Wilde

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    The name you use for the EB-5 process is what appears on your passport. It does not matter that your first name is hard to pronounce. You could use a nickname for your work and friends when you come into the United States, but that is not truly your legal name for employment, driver's license, social security, and any other official, legal purposes. When you get your citizenship application, you will have a chance to change your name to something else, but until then, how you are identified for legal purposes is what is on your passport.

  • Avatar

    Bernard P Wolfsdorf

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    Regardless of how difficult your name is, you must use the name currently on your birth certificate up until such time as a court with jurisdiction approves the change.

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    Daniel B Lundy

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    Use the name printed on your passport exactly as it appears on your passport or you could have all kinds of unexpected difficulty.

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    Vaughan de Kirby

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    You should only use your name as it appears on your passport. Discuss this with your investment immigration attorney before you make any name change.

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    BoBi Ahn

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    You need to provide your legal name at the time of filing the petition. So, if you have not already legally changed your name at the time of filing the EB-5 petition, you cannot use the "Americanized" new name as your name on the petition. You can, however, in anticipation of the name change, indicate an "a.k.a." (also known as) in the petition.

  • Avatar

    Stephen Berman

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    You should use the name that appears on your birth certificate. You can apply for a name change after you immigrate.

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