On 12/22/17, the House and Senate passed a spending bill which extends the current federal budget until 1/19/2018. By passing a short-term bill, the EB-5 program will be extended without any changes, because current federal programs and spending will be preserved until 1/19/2018. More importantly, this means that the minimum investment amount for the program will not change at least until 1/19/2017. Department of Homeland Security (DHS) has previously conveyed that regulations that will increase the minimum investment amount would likely take effect in 2018. Because of this, many people are taking advantage of the lower minimum investment amount requirements before the EB-5 extension expires.
Generally, the EB-5 visa allows investors to gain permanent residence in the U.S. by investing $500,000 in an area with low employment in aims to spur economic activity and create 10 full time jobs in the U.S. Alternatively, the investment amount is $1,000,000 in a project that does not fall within one of these areas. Both investment amount requirements could drastically increase in the coming year.
Fearing a potential increase, many investors are taking advantage of the current EB-5 requirements before the minimum investment amount raises. Many of these applicants are Indian investors who are seeking to bring their spouses and children to the U.S. before the minimum investment amount increases. EB-5 has been more recently considered by Indian nationals because of the Trump Administration’s efforts to stifle the H-1B program and restrict the working ability of the spouses of H-1B visa holders. In addition, investors from India experience a significantly shorter backlog of applications submitted to USCIS which results in faster processing times compared to investors from other countries, such as China.
Author: Gerard Arcilla, Esq., Associate at SMS Law Firm
The information contained in this article is not legal advice is and is only intended for general information. Reading the provided content does not establish an attorney-client relationship with SMS Law Firm. If you seek legal assistance for immigration related legal issues, you should consult with an attorney.