Section 203(b)(5) of the Immigration and Nationality Act (INA), allocates 10,000 “EB-5” immigrant visas per year to qualified individuals seeking Lawful Permanent Residency Status on the basis of their Capital Investment in a New Commercial Enterprise, or a troubled business, which must produce or preserve at least 10 full time jobs for American Workers.
A Commercial Enterprise is defined by USCIS as any for-profit and lawful business including, but not limited to:
A sole proprietorship
Partnership (whether limited or general)
Congress created the EB-5 Immigrant Visa Program during the recession of 1990. This program was designed to stimulate the U.S. economy through job creation and to encourage the inflow of Capital to the United States by foreign investors.
By 2005, this program had not yet become successful: not because of lack of interested investors, but because of difficult applications and unreasonably sloppy process; including a long adjudication, which had led to the suspension of processing on over 900 EB-5 cases—some of which dated back all the way to 1995.
By the end of 2011 fiscal year, more than 3,800 EB-5 applications had been filed; compared to about 800 applications in 2007.
However, EB-5 program toped its allotted 10,000 for the first time in August 2014. As a result of which the State Department stopped issuing EB-5 visas until the beginning of the next fiscal year, which started in October of 2014.
According to some studies EB-5 Investors have contributed to the United States Economy $3.4 billion dollars and created or preserved 42,000 jobs, in 2012, alone.
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