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What documents does USCIS request from banks where EB-5 investors take loans for investment purposes?

Is it common for USCIS to request a letter from the bank of the investor, stating that they are aware that the home equity loan will be used for investment purposes? Would a bank issue such a letter since the home equity loans are commonly unrestricted if secured by a property owned by the petitioner?

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    Julia Roussinova

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    If the loan documents do not say a loan is restricted or securities may not be purchased with loan proceeds, generally such a letter from the bank should not be required. Ensure you engage the services of an experienced EB-5 immigration attorney who will review your source of funds/loan documents and advise you further.

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    Belma Chinchoy

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    It is not common for USCIS to request a letter from the bank stating that they are aware that the home equity loan will be used for investment purposes. Make sure to provide all loan supporting documents.

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    Phuong Le

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    Yes, it''s common for USCIS to ask whether it is acceptable for a home equity line of credit or loan to be used for EB-5 investment purposes, because if the underlying documents prohibit the funds from being used to purchase securities, then it could be denied.

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    Blake Harrison

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    Generally, because HELOC loans are unrestricted, you do not need to provide evidence regarding the loan purpose. However, banks do require the borrower to provide a "loan purpose" for other types of loans.

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    Jinhee Wilde

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    Depending on the banking rules of the country, the bank may ask for the purpose of the loan. However, any bank letter specifically stating that the loan was taken out for the purpose of investment is not a required document for USCIS.

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    Marko Issever

    EB-5 Broker Dealer
    Answered on

    USCIS is mostly interested to investigate the source of funds. Obviously, they have no interest to investigate the source of funds that are coming from the bank. They are interested to know, however, if the loan was "unsecured." If the loan was unsecured there would be a strong chance that they would deny the I-526 petition or at least issue a request for evidence (RFE). If the loan is collateralized then they would want the bank to state that. In summary, they would want to know all the collateral the bank is relying on to make the loan. Once that is identified, the additional documentation USCIS would require from the investor is to prove the source of funds used to purchase the collateral they are using to borrow the loan from the bank. In your example, since the investor is using property they own as collateral for the loan they would need to show documentation to prove that the funds they used to purchase the property are legitimate.

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    Charles Foster

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    If an EB-5 investor takes a home loan, refinancing or a second mortgage on their home, the USCIS would require all the normal documents that one would have showing the terms and conditions of the loan and the fact that it is secured by a mortgage/deed of trust on the property. Any restrictions in terms of the use of the home equity loan would be self-evident on the face of the promissory note and related deed of trust. Those would be the controlling documents.

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    BoBi Ahn

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    For bank loans, a fully executed loan document should suffice. If you are using a home equity loan, you may also need to show a property deed to show ownership of the property. No letter would be needed in normal circumstances.

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    Salvatore Picataggio

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    USCIS has discretion to require a fairly wide range of documents. Something like this may not be unreasonable objectively, but depending on the actual facts of your secured loan, it may or may not be appropriate and an explanation may be needed.

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    Fredrick W Voigtmann

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    USCIS can ask for any document it believes will establish by a preponderance of the evidence that the invested capital was obtained through lawful means. If USCIS requests such a letter, it could mean that there was something in the record that suggested the loan application restricted the use of the proceeds of the home equity loan. For example, if the investor represented in writing to the bank that the proceeds of the loan were for a home remodel/addition and the bank relied on that representation to give the investor the loan, the investor may have to explain to USCIS or get something from the bank that it was/is OK for the loan proceeds to be used for investment. If the bank refuses to issue such a letter, the investor and his/her immigration counsel should be prepared to explain any inconsistencies in the record and argue by providing additional evidence that the invested funds were nevertheless lawfully obtained and that the evidentiary standard has been met. Sometimes USCIS overreaches and asks for irrelevant evidences or evidence that would place an undue burden on the investor to meet a higher standard of proof.

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    A Olusanjo Omoniyi

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    Generally, a home equity loan is unrestricted and banks do not issue any letter stating that the loan will be used for a specific purpose. However, for an EB-5 petition, an investor may be asked to document how he obtained money to buy the property itself and other related information associated with the property in question. As a result, be ready to provide detailed information related to the source(s) of your investment funds.

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