Archive for the ‘ investment ’ Category

Learn About The Treaty Investor Visa

Posted on: October 19, 2015 by in blog, investment, visas
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Las Vegas immigration lawyerIf you’re an international investor but you don’t want or need to reside permanently in the United States, the E-2 treaty investor visa may be right for you. If you are from one of the many nations that has a commercial treaty with the United States, and if you can make a “substantial” contribution in a U.S.-based business, discuss the E-2 visa promptly with an experienced Las Vegas immigration lawyer. The E-2 visa should not be confused with the EB-5 visa, which requires a minimum investment amount of $500,000 and provides the investor with lawful permanent residence in the United States. An E-2 visa requires no minimum investment amount provided that the investment is “substantial.” A potential E-2 investor must satisfy these requirements:

  • The investment must be substantial, with contribution funds or assets committed and irrevocable. It must be sufficient to ensure the successful operation of the enterprise.
  • The investment must be a real operating enterprise, that is, an active commercial or entrepreneurial undertaking. A paper organization, speculative, or idle contribution does not qualify.
  • The contribution must generate significant income beyond your living expenses or it must have a significant economic impact in the United States.
  • You must have control of the funds, and the contribution must be at risk in the commercial sense.
  • You must be coming to the United States to develop and direct the enterprise. If you are not the principal investor, you must be considered an essential employee who works in a supervisory, executive, or highly-specialized capacity.

If you are an international investor with a desire to invest in the United States, promptly seek the counsel and expertise of our experienced Las Vegas E-1 E-2 investor lawyers. Both immigration law and American business are complicated and frequently confusing, but a good immigration attorney will be able to answer your questions, address your concerns, and help you with the documents and paperwork. Don’t procrastinate when it comes to your hopes and dreams. Instead, contact an experienced Las Vegas E-1 E-2 investor lawyer today.

Israel Approves E-2 Investor Visa

Posted on: September 15, 2014 by in investment, visas
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Israel Approves E-2 Investor VisaEarlier this year, the Israeli government finally approved the E-2 investor validation for Israeli entrepreneurs who want to take their investments to America. Approval by Israel’s government also means that Americans seeking to invest in Israeli businesses will be eligible for a comparable Israeli visa. The E-2 or “treaty investor” validation allows individuals to enter the U.S. to invest in a new or existing business enterprise. The investor needs to prove that the business will generate profits and provide jobs to U.S. citizens. Obtaining an E-2 visa, however, is a complicated process with plenty of potential for mistakes and misunderstandings that can delay approval of your visa petition. Investors seeking the E-2 visa should not hesitate to obtain help from our experienced E-1 E-2 investor lawyers who can review your validation petition and other pertinent documents for thoroughness and accuracy.

The E-2 visa program requires investment in an active U.S. business; stock and bond holders are therefore ineligible. In fact, a significant investment must be made prior to filing for the E-2 visa. If you are already in the United States, an E-2 validation applicant must complete form I-129 for a change of status. To avoid any mistakes, let a good immigration lawyer complete or review the paperwork for you. Upon Israel’s approval of the reciprocal validation agreement between Israel and the U.S., Israel’s Interior Minister Gideon Sa’ar told Ynet News, “The U.S. is a major economic partner for Israel. It is the main source of foreign investment in Israel and is at the same time one of the major destinations for investments by Israelis.”

Investors should know that an E-2 visa is not a substitute for an immigrant visa. Persons wishing to remain permanently in the United States must apply for the appropriate immigrant visa abroad or apply for an adjustment of status after entering the United States. Spouses and children under 21 may obtain derivative E-2 visas to accompany or follow the principal validation holder to the United States. If you are a foreign national investor interested in investing here, a good immigration lawyer can answer your questions and determine if the E-2 is the right validation for you. Legal questions and complications are always part of obtaining a visa, so do not hesitate to obtain first the counsel and services of an experienced E-1 E-2 investor attorney.

EB-5 Investment Before I-526 Filing

Posted on: May 3, 2013 by in EB-5, investment
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bigstock-Citizenship-documents-43205116I-526 Basics

An EB-5 investor visa is intended for foreign investors who have or are in the process of investing substantial capital in a new U.S. enterprise in an amount of at least $500,000 or $1 million, depending on the enterprise. In order to apply for an EB-5 visa, a foreign financier has to fill out form I-526, which is a U.S. Customs and Immigration Service (USCIS) form. Form I-526 is just three pages long and asks for background on the investor applicant as well as the investment.

Full Amount Funding Before I-526

A common question among EB-5 investors is whether or not the full required amount has to be invested before they file an I-526 for visa consideration. The law is very clear when it states that the financier must have already invested or be in the process of investing the required amount. Therefore, it is not required that the entire amount be invested at the time of filing, but the investor will need to show that a substantial step in the investment process has been taken. The mere intent to invest, and even making preliminary investment arrangements, will not satisfy this requirement.

USCIS wants to see that an financier has made a substantial step toward investing in a U.S. enterprise before it will approve a conditional EB-5 financier visa. This can be shown by bank statements showing deposits into a business account, by proof of purchase of assets to be used in the business, by proof of transfer of foreign property to be used in a business, and by certain other documents.

Investors Have Two Years

Although not required that the entire investment amount be placed into a U.S. enterprise before filling out the I-526 application, an EB-5 financier generally has two years to invest the full required amount into the enterprise. Failure to place the entire required amount into the business could could result in the investor’s conditional visa being revoked, which could cause a whole new set of problems in and of itself for the foreign investor.

How to Avoid Delays, Denials & Revocations

There is really only one way that a foreign financier  can make sure he or she will have a good chance of being approved for an EB-5 financier visa – by partnering with a credentialed EB-5 attorney. An EB-5 investor attorney will be able to explain the immigration process to the investor and walk the financier through the investment / immigration process. The attorney can review appropriate applications and documents to ensure they have been filled out properly and can make sure the investor has met all necessary requirements before the documents are submitted. This can reduce the chances of the investor being denied over a simple administrative error, which would only prolong the process.

Investors should keep in mind that it can take up to a year before they hear anything back on the status of their application. If working with an EB-5 investor visa lawyer, the investor will be notified by the E-5 investor visa attorney as soon as progress to their application has been made.

How to get EB-5 Investors to Invest

Posted on: May 1, 2013 by in EB-5, investment
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bigstock-Passports-31148Investing in the U.S. Economy

Part of the purpose of America’s EB-5 investor visa program is to promote investment in the U.S. economy. To  EB-5 investors, this can either mean creating a whole new American based business or investing in a U.S. business already in existence but in serious need of financial backing (fortunately for EB-5 investors, the United States is littered with entrepreneurs who need little more than a cash infusion in order to get their business ideas off the ground). What this means to the U.S. business person is that there is a pool of foreign investors who are ready and willing to invest in their business as a path to legal residency. Since many EB-5 investors would rather invest in an already existing business than go through the trouble of starting one from scratch, American entrepreneurs have pretty good odds of finding foreign investors with capital – if they know where to look, and if their idea is good enough to persuade an investor.

Where to Find EB-5 Investors

Just like with other kinds of investors, EB-5 investors often use brokers to facilitate investment relationships. Entrepreneurs can use the web to search for the nearest EB-5 investor brokerage near them which, of course, would mean working with a middle man. While this is normal in the investor / entrepreneur relationship, it can make many entrepreneurs feel isolated from their investor.

If they don’t want to go through a brokerage, entrepreneurs can market their investment opportunities on their own using any number of different marketing techniques, from word of mouth to Craigslist. Contrary to what an entrepreneur might think, it would be pretty secure dealing with an EB-5 investor they find online. After all, if the investor doesn’t invest, no visa is issued. EB-5 application requirements are very clear as to how much cash an investor must invest, when the cash must be invested, and how long the cash has to stay “at risk”, or invested, in a company before the interests or assets held by the investor can be sold, transferred, traded, etc.

Another good source of EB-5 investor contacts is immigration attorneys. Immigration attorneys help clients apply for various types of visas – if they have clients with substantial capital to invest that are looking for a path to residency and eventual citizenship, they may be willing to pair the client with the entrepreneur for the benefit of both parties.

Just Like Other Investors

What entrepreneurs need to realize about EB-5 investors is that, even though they are investing for the purpose of being granted a visa, they are just like other investors in all other regards. This means that they will want to know, to the letter, how their money will be spent, how the entrepreneur expects to earn a profit, and how long before they can expect to see a profit from their investment. If the entrepreneur can’t offer satisfactory answers to these questions, the investor may very well decide to put his or her investment elsewhere.

Miami Looking to Foreign Investors for Capital

Posted on: April 30, 2013 by in investment
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bigstock-Two-stylish-beach-chairs-on-id-21204725Miami Trying Something New

The city of Miami, Florida is trying something new and rarely tried before in order to give a boost to its local economy. Using the rules of an immigration program established in the 1990s, the city seeks to attract foreign investors to raise funding for various business developments in the city. In exchange for investing at least $500,000 in a qualifying venture, foreign investors become eligible to receive an EB5 investor visa, granting them right to live and work in the United States.

In addition to funding the projects, the investments are expected to help create several hundred new jobs for Miami citizens. As a stipulation of being awarded an investor visa, the investment made by a foreign investor must create at least ten new jobs for the U.S. economy. In one venture alone, an estimated construction cost of $700 million is expected to be defrayed by about $100 million from foreign investment funds. To date, EB5 investors have already helped build university buildings, restaurants, a limestone mine, and countless other profitable businesses.

Using “Brand Recognition” to Attract Foreign Investors

Traditionally, the business of matching potential foreign investors with U.S. based ventures in need of capital was done by private attorneys and brokers. By stepping into the realm of EB5 investments, the city of Miami is hoping to use its “brand recognition” to attract foreign investors to invest in businesses and ventures that would be good for the city and its citizens.

Miami isn’t the only government entity to set up an EB5 program designed to attract deep pocketed investors; Dallas, Texas has been working with foreign EB5 investors since 2009, while the state of Vermont is currently trying to build up its own EB5 investor program.

In order for a jurisdiction to start its own EB5 investment program, it first has to become designated as a “regional center” – a certification granted by the government. Once approved to serve as a regional center, the jurisdiction can begin collecting investment bids for multiple venture projects at once, and send those bids to Washington for approval.

It’s About More than the Returns

All in all, it appears as if the EB5 investment program is a win/win/win. Foreign investors get their chance at the American dream by being able to live and work in the U.S., American entrepreneurs get the funding they need to get their businesses off the ground, and the U.S. economy gets an infusion of cash and a guarantee of jobs created.

For the foreign investor, a rate of return of about 8% is usually expected, but many are happy earning only about 1 or 2%. In the case of most investors, it isn’t the rate of return that’s important (there are much less expensive ways to earn much higher returns), what is important is the prospect of living and working in the U.S. By becoming eligible for an EB5 visa, a foreign investor can then seek visas for their spouses and children under the age of 21.

Non-Accredited Investors and EB-5

Posted on: April 28, 2013 by in investment
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bigstock-Passports-31148What’s an Accredited Investor?

In the United States, an individual is an accredited investor if that person, including the person’s spouse, has a net worth of at least $1 million and earned an income of at least $200,000 ($300,000 including spouse) per year for the last three years.

It is important to understand the distinction between an accredited and non accredited financier because new companies in the U.S., while allowed to accept investments from an unlimited number of accredited investors, may only accept investment capital from a maximum of 35 non accredited investors.

The Importance of Investor Status

A foreign financier looking to invest in the U.S. economy should know whether or not he or she is an accredited financier before making any investments. If the investor is accredited, it should not have that much of an impact because U.S. enterprises can receive investments from an unlimited number of accredited investors. However, if the investor is nonaccredited, he or she may only be one of 35 non accredited investors to provide funding for a U.S. enterprise. An investor will want to know whether or not he or she is accredited so that the investor and primary holders of the enterprise don’t break Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) rules. Breaking these rules could cause a person’s investment to become invalid and/or the person may be forced to start the investment process all over again. This would be detrimental to the foreign investor because without an investment, there can be no EB-5 visa.

Getting the Money

Since investing under the status of an accredited investor opens more doors for the EB-5 financier than non accredited status, an investor may first want to raise the necessary capital to become accredited before making an investment. While it is allowed for friends and family of the investor to gift the financier the necessary funds to become accredited, the investor will still have to meet income requirements and be able to prove that the source of the funds is legal. This proof can be shown by tax documents and other financial statements.

Best Advice for EB-5 Investors

Perhaps the best thing an EB-5 financier can do before making any investments is speak with an immigration attorney to ensure the investment and subsequent immigration process go as quickly and smoothly as possible. Based on the attorney’s experience, he or she will be able to guide the financier through the process of investing and applying for citizenship under the EB-5 visa program to reduce the likelihood that the investor’s application is rejected.

In addition to helping applicants find out if they meet EB-5 financier requirements, an immigration attorney can also help the financier gather the necessary proof to show that the requirements have been met. The government will want to make sure that the applicant actually has the funds that he or she claims to have, which is why proof of a legitimate financial history will have to be shown. An experienced attorney will know exactly where the investor should look for these documents and, in many cases, can even help the financier acquire copies of the necessary documents.