I bought a house for $40,000 and sold it for $190,000 in 2017. Then I invested this money in the stock market and now it is worth about $550,000. I plan to use this money to invest in EB-5. I am not able to provide complete evidence for the first $40,000, which came from savings and other random income. I do not have any tax returns left or anything. What are my options in this situation?
Copies of income tax returns filed years ago can be obtained from the IRS. Also, your bank should have records of your checking and savings accounts from years ago. You should be able to obtain sufficient documentation to show that you obtained the $40,000 legally.
Then you have a gap but these are not always a problem, as USCIS will look at the totality of circumstances to see if the $40,000 was lawfully earned. We can often use the evidence we have, plus declarations to show this was lawfully earned.
Documenting the sale in 2017 and stock proceeds, etc., should be enough for lawful source of funds.
You will need to either submit affidavits from yourself and others about where the random money and savings came from. It might be a situation where you may have to trace back further than to the transaction from where you received the money. You may want to consult with an EB-5 attorney to discuss your particular situation and figure out how to prove the source of funds to satisfy USCIS.
You should try to prove that the money comes from legal source. For the real estate situation like yours, consider checking all the government's available records, such as a deed recorded for the property, taxes paid, etc. Then you should put together as much as documentation as possible. Also, consider filing an affidavit to back up your documentation. Advisably, consult an EB-5 attorney for guidance on the proper documentation process.
To date, the immigration service has shown some flexibility regarding evidence concerning funds that were acquired years ago, where the records available to evidence same are minimal. Given the fact that you are able to document more than $500,000 and you have an explanation for the $40,000, I would not anticipate this being a problem. However, you need to provide a detailed statement, preferably in affidavit form, indicating that the $40,000 came, as you say, from savings and random income. If possible, you could reference and file your tax returns for that period of time showing your income as evidence of your ability to accumulate the $40,000.
Depending on your jurisdiction, you may obtain tax records from your local tax authority to support accumulation of savings and income over time for the initial $40,000. If there is absolutely no primary evidence, you should work with an experienced EB-5 immigration attorney who should be able to guide you on types of secondary evidence to be produced and will prepare a declaration for your case supported by secondary evidence. We have handled multiple situations like that when no primary evidence was unavailable and I-526s were approved with declarations supported by secondary evidence.
You need to think about how to document the income and savings to purchase that $40,000, as USCIS will demand the source of that original purchase. If you had a relationship with the bank that you had your savings, perhaps they could provide a statement of annualized balances. Perhaps you could obtain the employment letter or employment contract from your employer and obtain an income certificate(s), preferably signed by employer's human resources director or equivalent detailing employment period, job titles, job description and compensation. Alternatively, you could have declarations from former co-workers or supervisors regarding employment and income history, as well as any other evidence tending to corroborate employment and income claims.
You could provide declarations and other supplemental documents to explain the source of the $40,000.
Your source of funds for your investment capital may be complex, but that does not mean it is not doable. I suggest you work closely with your investment immigration attorney to identify the documentation that will satisfy USCIS.
Perhaps they will accept the evidence you have.
There are some ways to get around this but still provide 100 percent proof of funds. Go see a competent EB-5 lawyer.
I think the proof of the sale at $190,000 and the stock market transactions should be enough. I have gotten EB-5 cases approved under similar facts.
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