We are four EB-5 investors who would like to invest in our own business. We do not want to go through an already established regional center. Since we are pooling our investments, can we count indirect jobs? Or do we have to be registered as a regional center?
Only regional centers may count indirect jobs. You might join into a concept known as rent a center and for a fee you may use their center for your project.
While there is nothing wrong in pooling resources to establish your business for EB-5 purposes, be on notice that each investor's financial contribution/stake in the business must be EB-5 compliant. In essence, each partner must invest either $500,000 or $1 million depending on whether the business is located in rural or urban area. Advisably contact an EB-5 attorney on your idea.
In response to your question, with four investors, 40 full time jobs must be created. An employee is a person that provides services or labor in exchange for compensation. For an employee to be full time, he/she requires a minimum of 35 working hours per week. This does not include independent contractors, nonimmigrant employees, the investor or the investor's family members. The regional center program allows the investor to qualify for an EB-5 green card by directly or indirectly hiring 10 people, whereas an alien investing in a new commercial enterprise under the basic program must satisfy the job requirement through the creation of 10 direct jobs for U.S. workers. U.S. Immigration has defined "direct jobs" as those that establish an employer-employee relationship between the newly established commercial enterprise and the persons that they employ. Immigration (USCIS) defines "indirect jobs" as those held by persons who work outside the newly established commercial enterprise. Indirect jobs include equipment manufacturers and services used by a commercial enterprise. Furthermore, regional center programs do not require the investor's day-to-day management or involvement in running an active business, nor do they require investors to live in the place of investment. For those investors who have no management knowledge or experience, regional center programs provide a more flexible choice. USCIS, however, now deems direct and indirect construction jobs created by the investor that last for at least two years as counting toward the job creation requirement. So, if a petitioner can reasonably prove the need for construction work for 35 hours a week over the course of at least two years prior to filing Form I-829 (removal of conditions), such positions will meet the full time requirement. If the petitioner hires employees who only came intermittently for three or four week periods over the course of the project, such positions would not meet the full time requirement. It is important that you think out your options. Reminder: for four investors, 40 jobs must be created.
Indirect jobs may be counted only in a regional center EB-5 project.
Only investments with regional centers allow petitioners to count indirect job creation.
The project (business) must be affiliated with a regional center to count indirect jobs. Affiliating with a regional center can be handled by your EB-5 attorney, who can assist you with the proper structure and documentation.
Indirect and induced jobs are available through a regional center only. Direct investment must create at least 10 full time jobs per investor.
Indirect jobs can only be counted with an EB-5 regional center investment.
For a direct EB-5 project, you cannot count indirect jobs. Only regional center projects can count indirect jobs.
Yes, you need to be affiliated with a regional center to count indirect jobs.
The structure you have described is a direct investment EB-5 and only direct jobs will be counted regardless of the number of EB-5 investors.
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