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How can I convert my E-2 business to an EB-5 project?

I came across a few posts in regards to changing status from E-2 to EB-5. In my estimation, we have between $300,000 to $400,000 already invested in our E-2 company. We are planning to invest more to expand the business. Is it possible to change status with this level of investment and a good business plan? How do we start this process? Are there any restrictions on what kind of E-2 businesses are qualified?

Answers

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    Bernard P Wolfsdorf

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    There are many issues, including proving the lawful source of funds. These cases are absolutely viable but usually we find that when planning the E-2, the applicant did not structure the business correctly, so proving individual lawful source of funds can be a challenge.

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    Julia Roussinova

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    Before you decide to file I-526 petition, you should consult an experienced EB-5 immigration attorney to determine if your E-2 business is eligible for EB-5, because E-2 requirements are different from EB-5. Your EB-5 investment must come from a lawful source of funds and be completely traceable. Additionally, your comprehensive EB-5-compliant business plan must support the creation of at least 10 full-time positions (at least 35 hours a week). Furthermore, the minimum investment amount (if business is located within the targeted employment area) is currently $500,000. Or it is $1 million, if the business does not qualify for TEA location.

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    Stephen Berman

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    There is no rule about changing from any particular type of visa to an EB-5. If you have $1 million or $500,000 to invest, and a plan to create 10 new jobs, then you should qualify.

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    Blake Harrison

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    You will need to make the remaining investment amount available to the company before filing the EB-5 application. That amount will depend on whether or not the business is located within a targeted employment area. There are no restrictions on the type of business for EB-5 purposes, but the business plan will need to show how the company plans to create 10 full-time jobs before the filing of the I-829.

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    Olga Karasik

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    Yes, you can. You will need to meet all EB-5 requirements, i.e., job creation of 10 full-time positions, being in TEA area, source of funds, etc. But basically, it can be done and has been done before many times.

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    Lynne Feldman

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    The minimum for EB-5 is a $1-million investment unless you are located in a TEA (targeted employment area) as designated by your state, rural or high employment. Furthermore, you must show the creation of 10 new jobs.

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    Jinhee Wilde

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    There are two things you should be aware of. First is that the EB-5 investment amount is $1 million, except if the business is located in a targeted employment area, for which the investment could be $500,000. Thus, you will need to invest more to achieve EB-5. Second is that your business must create at least 10 full-time, permanent jobs, which should be detailed in the business plan you submit with the I-526.

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    Fredrick W Voigtmann

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    Any legal, for-profit business should qualify, assuming the requisite number of full-time positions can be created. Before you invest any further, you should consult with an immigration attorney who is experienced in representing E-2 investors who wish to apply for EB-5. There are several key issues to resolve first before confirming whether your existing E-2 investment and/or job creation can be counted for EB-5 purposes. Also, the EB-5 business plan will need to meet all requirements and be compliant for EB-5 purposes. These requirements are different than those for E-2. If done correctly, this could be an effective way to obtain a green card while still maintaining your E-2 status while waiting.

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    BoBi Ahn

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    You may utilize the investment and the business structure that you have for obtaining your E-2 status to file for an EB-5 immigrant investor processing.

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    Robert West

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    It is possible but very complex. Please go see someone who has done this before for a client.

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    Dale Schwartz

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    It may be possible if you can show that you have the additional funds and/or assets to invest over the next two years. You should consult an experienced EB-5 immigration attorney. My firm has converted a number of E-2 investments into successful EB-5 cases, but there are many rules to be aware of and which you must follow.

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    A Olusanjo Omoniyi

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    It is possible to convert E-2 visa to EB-5 investment visa. However, it requires good planning that involves several steps, including, but not limited to, writing a good business plan. There are no specific restrictions on which E-2 businesses qualify or not. Sound and thorough planning is all that is needed. Advisably, contact an EB-5 attorney who can help organize the plan.

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    Raymond Lahoud

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    Thank you for your EB-5 question. I have handled many matters related to the switch from the E-2 to the EB-5. All EB-5 requirements still must be met. Also, depending on your prior investments and retained earnings, reinvestments, etc. Please contact competent EB-5 immigration counsel.

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    Michael A Harris, Esq

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    You will need to show at the time of filing for the EB-5 petition that you have committed at least $500,000 (if in a TEA). And since the EB-5 process requires a few steps, you will not be able to change status (or adjust status) immediately. Your EB-5 petition will be pending for one to two-plus years before it can be approved. If approved, then at that time would we apply to adjust your status with a green card. Your E-2 investment may qualify, as an E-2 investment cannot be a passive one and an EB-5 business cannot, either. But the central question (in addition to your investment commitment and whether it will be at risk) may be whether your business has created or will create at least 10 new full-time jobs.

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    Charles Foster

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    In order to use your E-2 investment for an EB-5 investment, you would have to increase the investment amount to at least $500,000, provided that the business is located in a targeted employment area (TEA) and you must have a business plan to show that the business will create and does create at least 10 new jobs for U.S. workers over a two-year period. There are no specific restrictions on the type of E-2 business as long as it is a lawful business.

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