The EB-5 visa program can lead to permanent residency in the US for foreign nationals. But before investing $500,000 or $1 million in a US business, applicants should consider both the pros and cons of the program.
Benefits of the EB-5 Visa Program
When participating in the EB-5 visa program, the applicant can live in any state he or she wants and does not need to manage the investment business.
Applicants also can work for any employer in any position. Or they can run their own business or even be retired. Plus, EB-5 green card holders don’t need to leave the US at regular intervals, so they can manage their business without visa constraints.
EB-5 investors and their families can enjoy permanent residency in the US, and are free to work or attend the school of their choice. They may even qualify for scholarship and in-state tuition programs.
Disadvantages of the EB-5 Visa Program
Some applicants may find the requirements for permanent residency under the EB-5 visa program to be inconvenient or difficult to achieve.
For example, green card holders must establish residency in the US and must remain in the country for at least 180 days per year, unless they apply for a re-entry permit.
Applicants also must declare their worldwide income and assets to the IRS for tax purposes.
The minimum investment in the EB-5 visa program is $500,000, which many applicants may not have.
Under the regional center version of the EB-5 program, the applicant doesn’t manage the business they invest in themselves, so they may not have as much control over the business’s success or failure. This may not necessarily be a disadvantage for applicants who simply want to retire in the US or who want to work as an employee at the kind of job that would not normally qualify for a US work visa.