From what i understand, foreign investors receive permanent residency status 24 months after the initial I-526 approval (assuming that the investment meets all criteria). However, there is also a 5-year period that the investment needs to be in compliance with, otherwise the EB-5 investor could have their residency status revoked. Can somebody explain the discrepancy please?
The conditional permanent residence is granted for 24 months. You will then apply for an I-829 petition 90 days prior to the expiration of your 24 month conditional residence. The five year commitment may be applied by certain regional centers.
I think you're confusing the conditional permanent residency period with the typical period that projects will keep an investment within their system before their exit strategies kick in. The EB-5 area is full of terms and concepts like this, which is why working with experienced EB-5 counsel, like our law firm, is essential.
There is no 5 year requirement. The duration of the investment is determined by the project. Your provisional green card is valid for 24months and at the end of that duration you have to file your I-829 to obtain a permanent green card. So in essence, the money has to be there for at least 3.5 to 4 years.
There is no five-year compliance period under U.S. immigration laws. Most regional center EB-5 investments are based upon a five-year minimum commitment of capital under the terms of the subscription agreement. Therefore, in most cases, EB-5 investors cannot get any return of their principal until that time, and of course, the amount returned cannot be guaranteed because of the requirement that the capital be at risk.
Once an investor''s 526 petition is approved, they would then apply for an immigrant visa (outside of the United States) or adjustment of status (inside the United States). Processing times for both vary widely, and can be anywhere from 3 to 12 months. Upon approval of an adjustment of status, the investor becomes a conditional resident. Upon approval of the immigrant visa, the investor then has a full 6 months to enter the United States, and only becomes a conditional resident upon entry. Thus, from the time of approval of the 526 to the time of filing the 829 can be as much as 3.5 years, because the two year clock doesn''t start to run until the investor becomes a conditional resident, which does not happen upon 526 approval. The investor must maintain the investment through the conditional residence period, which does not end until 829 approval. 829 processing times are about a year. That brings us to 4.5 years from the time of 526 approval. The 5 year investment term (which cannot be guaranteed) is based, in large part, on an estimate of when all investors in a project should reasonably be done with the 829 process, and had become standard in the market as a result.
Please note the following timeline to assist you understand the EB-5 process for permanent residency. The preparation of the I-526 petition may take a couple of months. The I-526 investors petition is filed and the USCIS may take 12 months (more or less) to approve the I-526 petition. Upon the approval of the I-526 petition, the investor will then apply for the conditional permanent residency visa through the U.S. Consulate. This U.S. Consulate process will usually take a few months and the investor will obtain a conditional permanent residency visa for a two year period. Before the end of the two year conditional permanent residency period, the investor will file the I-829 petition with the USCIS to obtain an approval to remove the conditions. This process of adjudication may take 12 months. At the end of the process, the investor will obtain unconditional permanent residency. The above process may have taken 4 years. It is advisable that the project waits for all the investors to have approval on the I-829 petitions before there is any exit from the project of any of the investors. The USCIS would like to see the investors funds are being used before any exit of funds from the JCE. The above is the reason why most exits for the investors from the project are around 5 to 6 years.
This is not correct. Initially the conditional green card is valid for 24 months. An application to make the green card permanent must be filed during the 90 day window preceding the expiration, that is at 21 month mark. That application usually takes about 12 months. So the entire process takes 3 - 4 years.
Philip H Teplen
There is no 5 year requirement. You are seeing a popular investment pool strategy of a 5 year commitment, but that is business and not immigration. I will be happy to discuss with you.
The 5 year period is not a requirement but more of an industry standard. Consider the time it takes from the period the investor makes his/her investment until the I-526 (application for a conditional green card) is approved and the actual visa is subsequently approved. Following the investor''s move to the United States, s/he will file an I-829 (application for a permanent green card). Until the I-829 is approved, the investor cannot be returned his/her investment. This whole process tends to take roughly 5 years (at minimum).