EB5 Visa Minimum Investment Amount Lowered to $500,000
In this article, we will share some breaking news with you regarding the EB5 investor visa program. It appears that the investment amount to obtain a green card through EB5 has been lowered from $900,000 to $500,000. This is great news if you’re interested in obtaining an investor visa.
We are Ashoori Law, led by Michael Ashoori, a U.S. immigration lawyer based in Los Angeles, California. At our law firm, we work with clients from all over the world, and we regularly post articles and videos to make sure that you are up to date with the latest immigration news. If, after reading this article, you have more questions, then we invite you to contact us at Ashoori Law. Feel free to call us at +1-818-741-1117 or you may schedule a free consultation by clicking this link.
Some EB5 Background
In order to understand how groundbreaking this news is, it’s important that you know some of the background information about the EB5 visa. The EB5 investor visa is a green card option for investors and entrepreneurs. Essentially, through the EB5 visa, someone can qualify for a green card for themself, their spouse, and their unmarried children under 21 years old, based on making an investment in a US business and creating jobs for US workers.
For many years, the required minimum investment to get an EB5 visa was $500,000 if the investor was investing in a targeted employment area or $1 million dollars if the investor was making a standard investment outside of a targeted employment area.
However, in November of 2019, the rules changed for EB5 visas. The investment amount went from $500,000 as the minimum investment to $900,000 as the minimum investment. This is a significant increase. When these changes took place, it had a chilling effect on the EB5 program because a large portion of the people that were applying for an EB5 visa were just barely able to pull together the funds to meet the $500,000 amount. So when the investment amount rose to $900,000, many people that once could afford the program were now no longer able to pull together the funds to make the required investment.
After the rules changed for EB5 and the minimum investment amount went to $900,000, a regional center by the name of Behring Regional Center LLC filed a lawsuit challenging the increase in the minimum investment amount. In this lawsuit, there were many challenges raised, one of which included the challenge that the former Acting Secretary of the Department of Homeland Security, Kevin McAleenan, was not properly serving in his position when he promulgated the EB5 Modernization Final Rule. Therefore, the lawsuit argues that the rules which increased the EB5 minimum investment amount should be set aside.
On June 22nd, 2021, Federal Judge Jacqueline Scott Corley ruled in favor of the plaintiffs. This invalidated the rule that increased the investment amount for EB5 from $500,000 to $900,000. However, the court did not grant an injunction preventing the current Secretary of the Department of Homeland Security from reinstating the rules in a manner that is compliant with the appropriate procedures.
Basically, the reason the court invalidated the rule that increased the EB5 investment amount was due to a procedural error that was made on the part of the Department of Homeland Security. In the court's ruling, there is nothing preventing the Department of Homeland Security from correcting the error that it previously made to re-enact this rule in a way that's compliant with the regulations.
What This Means for You
What this means is that as of right now, investors who are seeking to apply for an EB5 visa can apply for their EB5 visa based on making an investment of $500,000. This is something investors have been unable to do since November of 2019 when the rule changed.
However, it is likely that there will be a limited window of time where people can file their EB5 case based on making an investment of $500,000. This is because the current Secretary of the Department of Homeland Security will likely be re-enacting the rule, which increased the minimum investment amount to $900,000, in a manner that is compliant with all of the appropriate procedures.
How limited this window is and how long it’s going to last is unclear right now. It’s something that we're going to learn more and more about in the coming days and weeks ahead once we hear a response from USCIS indicating how they are going to proceed.
EB5 Regional Center Program
It is also important to understand that the EB5 regional center program expired on June 30th, 2021. It’s still possible that the program will be extended, but as of now the EB5 regional center program has lapsed.
My name is Michael Ashoori and I'm a U.S. immigration lawyer and the founder of Ashoori Law. As an immigration lawyer, I help families, professionals, investors, and entrepreneurs get visas, green cards, and citizenship to the United States. If you have any questions, feel free to request a free consultation by clicking this link. You may also call or text us at +1-818-741-1117.
Because of the fluid nature of this EB5 news, please make sure to verify this information at the time of reading this article to confirm whether it is still up to date.
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Michael Ashoori, Esq.
U.S. Immigration Lawyer
I’m a U.S. immigration lawyer and I help families, professionals, investors, and entrepreneurs get visas, green cards, and citizenship to the United States.
Since starting my law firm, I’ve helped hundreds of people from all over the world with their immigration needs. I’m very passionate, hard-working, and committed to my clients.
Got a question? Send me an email.