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Do I need to start creating jobs in a direct EB-5 investment before filing my I-526 petition?

I am working in the U.S. with an H-1B visa. My wife is holding an H-4 visa with an EAD work permit and my son is a U.S. citizen. Currently, my wife and son are running an online retail and services business from home. I have the means to invest $500,000 in the next three years to expand this business and create 10 full-time jobs in a TEA. If I want to use this as an EB-5 direct investment, do I need to invest and start creating jobs before filing the I-526 application, or will a detailed business plan at the filing stage suffice? My wife and son will still be managing the business.

Answers

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    Julia Roussinova

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    Your I-526 petition must be accompanied by a five-year, EB-5-compliant, comprehensive business plan that will credibly support how you are invested in the new commercial enterprise and how the requisite job creation of at least 10 full-time positions will be structured based on a specific business model. A full-time position is at least 35 hours a week. Jobs must be created within the two-year conditional residency period or within a reasonable time thereafter. In practical terms, you should follow the business plan and, ideally, have job creation in place at the I-829 filing stage.

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    A Olusanjo Omoniyi

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    Since the business is already in operation, it is advisable that you create an EB-5-compliant business plan and put the required investment in the business at the time your I-526 petition is filed. You are required to create at least 10 jobs within two years of operation of the business, or perhaps when your I-829 if filed. Advisably, work with an EB-5 attorney so that you can put in place all required steps before starting the investment.

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    Charles Foster

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    If you invest $500,000 to expand your business and create 10 full-time jobs in a targeted employment area (TEA), you should start to invest and create jobs at the earliest date, but you do not necessarily have to do so prior to filing the I-526 petition. You certainly need to conclude the above prior to filing your I-829 to remove your conditional permanent residency. A detailed business plan when you file your initial I-526 petition may be sufficient.

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    Bernard P Wolfsdorf

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    While there is no requirement to have the jobs before filing, it would be highly beneficial. At the time the petition is adjudicated, USCIS will often want to see such evidence.

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    Lynne Feldman

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    Jobs do not need to be in lace until the I-829 filing.

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    Salvatore Picataggio

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    The business plan should set out the plan to create jobs with the $500,000 investment during the 2-year period. If your business was an E-2 business, you may get credit for the old jobs and old investment. Preparing the right EB5 business structure is very important and best done with an experienced team of professionals.

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    Dale Schwartz

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    No. You have two years from the date of approval of the EB-5 petition to hire 10 US workers. The business plan should explain this in detail. We have done a number of similar cases.

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    Fredrick W Voigtmann

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    There is no requirement to create any jobs before filing the I-526 petition or even after filing. The requirement is to show that your new commercial enterprise created the jobs prior to the end of your two years of conditional residence or within a reasonable period of time thereafter. In order for the I-526 to be approved, however, you must provide USCIS with a comprehensive business plan projecting the need for the full-time positions and a credible hiring timeline showing when the positions will be created, how much they will be paid, their working hours, etc. Of course, if you have already created some or all of the positions before you file your I-526 or before it is approved, that is even better, but again, it is not required.

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    Belma Chinchoy

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    A comprehensive EB-5 business plan is sufficient.

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    Blake Harrison

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    The full-time jobs do not need to be created before filing the Form I-526. The business plan should include employment creation projections detailing how the company will employ 10 full-time workers in the future.

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    Vaughan de Kirby

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    This is a complex endeavor that is critical to the future of you and your family. I recommend you immediately consult with a qualified Investment Immigration Attorney who will also refer you to a consultant that will be experienced in drafting a USCIS compliant EB-5 business plan. With qualified guidance and support your plan can potentially work.

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    Stephanie Lee

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    It is always good to show jobs created in the initial stage. However, jobs that will be created within a year of the two-year anniversary of conditional residency of the investor may be considered to be created within a reasonable time.

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    Marko Issever

    EB-5 Broker Dealer
    Answered on

    As long as you have a detailed business plan and are in the process of investing the required amount of the investment you can certainly file the I-526 application. If you have created more than 10 full-time jobs by the time your I-526 application is approved and could maintain those jobs throughout your sustainment period that is your two-year conditional permanent residency you should be able to apply for I-829, removal of conditions, and switch your conditional green card to permanent.

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    BoBi Ahn

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    No, you do not need to have the 10 jobs created before filing the I-526. The job creation plan should be included in detail in the the business plan and created by the time you file the I-829 Petition to remove conditional permanent residence.

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