Posts Tagged ‘ EB-5 Regional Center ’

EB-5 Regional Center Program Here to Stay

Posted on: September 20, 2013 by in EB-5
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Immigrant Families on the MarchAs part of an initiative to attract investment funds to the United States, the government approved the Regional Center program under the EB-5 investor visa program in the 1990s. The Regional Center program allowed for the creation of Regional Centers, either privately or publicly owned, that could direct funds from EB-5 investments within a certain geographic area. This program, since the 1990s, has been renewed by Congress as a pilot program over and over. Now that certain changes to immigration policy have taken effect, Regional Centers are here to stay as a permanent fixture of the EB-5 investor visa program.

What’s a Regional Center?

More specifically, an EB-5 Regional Center, which is established as a business entity, receives and manages investment funds from foreign investors under the EB-5 program. As an entity dedicated to promoting economic growth within the boundaries of the Regional Center, the Center will take the funds and invest them into businesses within the region. By leveraging the investment funds of multiple investors, the investments which are made through Regional Centers are generally much more likely to become a success because each Regional Center has a staff dedicated to finding the best investment opportunities.

The Major Benefit of Working with a Regional Center

Perhaps the biggest benefit to working with a Regional Center is the fact that investors don’t have to be directly involved with the process of finding and directing investments. They can put their investment funds into the care of a Regional Center and the Center will do the rest. This is a great option for foreign investors who want to qualify for the EB-5 visa but who may not have the business background or the time to manage and direct investments solo.

Qualifying for the EB-5

To qualify for an EB-5 visa, a foreign investor must invest a substantial amount of capital into a U.S. based business venture. The capital must be at least $1,000,000, unless the investment is being made into a pre-designated area where investment funds are badly needed – in which case, the minimum investment amount is cut in half to $500,000. In addition to the minimum amount of capital needed to qualify under the program, an investment made must create at least 10 new jobs for the American workforce (if the funds are invested into a new venture), or must expand a business’ operations by 40%, either in terms of employees or net worth (if the funds are invested into an existing business venture).

Working with Legal Counsel

Perhaps the best way to go about applying for an EB-5 investor visa is to do it with the help of an immigration and visa attorney. An immigration and visa attorney can help the EB-5 applicant become eligible for an EB-5 visa under program requirements and, once eligible, can help the applicant move forward with the application process. Once all the paperwork is filled out and submitted to the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Service, the attorney will keep the applicant informed on the status of his or her application until a visa decision is made by immigration officials.

Purchase an EB-5 Regional Center

Posted on: July 1, 2013 by in EB-5
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bigstock-Citizenship-documents-43205116EB-5 Regional Centers

An EB-5 Local Center is a business entity that helps direct funds from foreign investors interested in the EB-5 investment program – which was launched in the 1990s, as a way for foreign investors to earn a U.S. visa by making a substantial investment in the U.S. economy. Under the terms of the program, the required investment amount is either $500,000 in designated industries, or $1,000,000 in any other. Dealing with a Local Center is a preferred investment option instead of investing into a business directly because of the benefits that Local Centers offer.

Regional Center or Direct Investment

When they make an investment into the U.S. economy as a way to earn an EB-5 investor visa, foreign investors have one of two options; they can invest in an established Local Center or invest into a qualified U.S. venture directly. If they invest directly, the foreign investor is required to handle several aspects of the investment that investors working with a Local Center don’t have to worry about. For example, direct investors are required to perform due diligence on the venture into which they want to invest to ensure that the venture qualifies under the terms of the EB5 program and that it is in fact a legitimate opportunity.

Further, direct investors must manage the investment and their funds on their own – a task which those without international business experience may find more difficult than not. Instead of investing directly and dealing with the hassles that direct investment entails, many foreign investors opt to invest in a Local Center which, in exchange for a small processing fee, is able to handle the due diligence and money management aspects of the process on behalf of the investor.

Regional Centers are Business Entities

Regional Centers are not controlled by the government, although some local and state governments may have an interest in establishing a Regional Center as a way to attract foreign cash into their respective cities and states as a way to boost local economies. Not every Regional Center, however, is government owned. Regional Centers are private business entities, like corporations, with a very specific function – to facilitate the investment of foreign cash into economically hard-hit, geographically specific, industries.

Purchase of an EB-5 Regional Center is Allowed

Because they function as private business entities, like corporations, EB5 Local Centers can be bought, sold, or traded, wholly or in part, to interested parties who can afford the price tag. Also because they are privately held, the going rate of an EB-5 Local Midlle is fluid and can change without notice, based on how much the Regional Center becomes worth.

Consult a Business Attorney for Regional Center Purchase

Because they will be buying a business entity, foreign investors interested in purchasing an EB5 Regional Center should work with a corporate attorney to facilitate the sale, but contact should also be maintained with an experienced immigration attorney who can advise the buyer on any immigration aspects which may affect the transfer of the Regional Center or the foreign investor’s ability to purchase a Regional Center.