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Can I use E-2 investment toward an EB-5 visa?

I am already operating a business in the U.S. on an E-2 visa and I have reinvested all earnings in my current business. Can I count that investment toward an EB-5 application? I have four employees now. Do I need to create six more jobs to qualify for a green card, or do I need to create an additional 10 new jobs?

Answers

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    Phuong Le

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    Provided that you have properly reinvested the earnings for EB-5 purposes (meaning you actually paid any profits/distributions to yourself, paid taxes on it, and then reinvested it), that investment amount may qualify. As for job count, depends on who is working for your business, but remember that although you and your immediate family may work for the business under E-2, you won't count towards the 10-job requirement for EB-5. I would not be surprised if you have to hire 10 new workers.

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    Julia Roussinova

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    It is definitely possible to qualify an E-2 investment for EB-5. Please keep in mind each program has a different set of requirements. First, you need to determine if the enterprise is principally doing business in the targeted employment area, so that the $500,000 investment is sufficient. Otherwise, the investment must be $1 million under current law. Your investment must also create at least 10 full-time positions (at least 35 hours a week). You cannot use retained earnings in the business unless you pay them out to yourself, such as dividends or distribution, pay income tax on it and then use it as part of EB-5 funds. A comprehensive EB-5-compliant business plan is also required for direct EB-5 cases. Careful planning is necessary to convert E-2 to EB-5. Consult an experienced EB-5 immigration attorney for further details.

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    Dale Schwartz

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    Yes, you can. We do this all the time for our clients who have E visas.

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    Bernard P Wolfsdorf

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    You cannot use reinvested capital as part of your EB-5 application. Either bake out $500,000 and invest in a regional center project or start a new business.

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    Stephen Berman

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    Yes, you can use the funds. No, you cannot use already created jobs.

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    Salvatore Picataggio

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    Since an E-2 requires a personal investment like an EB-5 does, yes, it should also count toward a future EB-5 filing, and yes, full-time positions created for U.S. citizens or permanent residents for the E-2 should also count. There are some specific differences that need to be addressed, so please contact an immigration attorney like myself to help!

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    Blake Harrison

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    Yes, you can file an EB-5 application for an E-2 business as long the required $500,000 (or $1 million, depending on the location) investment came from your personal assets. Re-investing company-retained earnings without paying personal income taxes on the funds would not qualify.

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    Michael A Harris, Esq

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    If you reinvested your personal income (and not earning retained by the business) then you may be able to qualify for EB-5 if you have personally invested $500,000 or more in the business. If you created four employees as a result of your E-2 investment, then you will need at least six more as you outlined.

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    Marko Issever

    EB-5 Broker Dealer
    Answered on

    Yes, you can count your current E-2 investment toward the amount necessary for the EB-5 but you need to be very careful. First and foremost, you need to up your investment to $500,000 if you are operating in a TEA and $1 million if you are operating in an urban area. You most likely need to write an EB-5-compliant Matter of Ho business plan. The source of funds scrutiny in EB-5 is much more than E-2. You will therefore need to hire a competent immigration attorney who has expertise in EB-5 and can guide you through the process.

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    Belma Chinchoy

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    Yes! That's the true beauty of being an E-2 investor. You get to utilize the E-2 investment toward the EB-5 and stay in the U.S. while your I-526 is pending. You do need an EB-5 attorney with expertise in direct EB-5s.

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    BoBi Ahn

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    Yes, it is possible. Among other requirements for the EB-5 processing, you will need to show that you have created at least 10 jobs based on the requisite minimum investment, so no need to created additional 10 new/additional jobs. If you have already created four, you will need six more jobs created as a minimum.

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    Charles Foster

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    Yes, you can use an investment that you made in conjunction with obtaining an E-2 non-immigrant treaty investor visa for purposes of establishing that you've made a qualified EB-5 compliant investment, provided that you establish that you transferred into the business at least $500,000 (assuming it's located in a targeted employment area). You would need to create a total of 10 jobs for U.S. workers, and you could account for the four current employees.

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    Hassan Elkhalil

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    You will need to prepare the sources of the funds report to submit with the EB-5. You can use your existing business and employees. When your I-526 is approved, then you will need to add six more employees to the four employees you already have. There are many more steps you need to take with your attorney to prepare for this transition.

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