EB-5 Process Explained [A Step-by-Step Guide]

EB-5 Process

Getting approved for an EB-5 visa can literally change your life.

 

Through the EB-5 process, a foreign investor can become a lawful permanent resident and take the next step to U.S. citizenship.

 

With that comes access to United States schools, a better life for you and your children, and many opportunities for financial success.

 

That said, the EB-5 process has many steps that must be carefully followed.

 

Without a proper understanding, the EB-5 process can become confusing and challenging.

 

This step-by-step guide was designed to give you an understanding of the EB-5 process from start to finish.

 

Once you finish this article, you will know the important aspects of the EB-5 process, from the time you hire an immigration attorney to the time you apply for U.S. citizenship.

Roadmap of what we will Cover:

 

Quick Overview of the EB-5 Visa

 

Step 1. Consult with an Immigration Attorney

 

Step 2. Select a Business or Project to Invest In

 

Step 3. Get A Comprehensive Business Plan

 

Step 4. Invest Your Funds into the New Commercial Enterprise

 

Step 5. Prepare and File the Form I-526

 

Step 6. USCIS Gives a Response

 

Step 7. Wait for Your Priority Date to Become Current (Nationals of Mainland China)

 

Step 8. Adjustment of Status OR Consular Processing

 

Step 9. 2 Year Period of Conditional Lawful Permanent Residency

 

Step 10. Preparing and Filing Form I-829

 

Step 11. Apply for Naturalization to Become a U.S. Citizen (Optional)

 

Lets get started…

 

As a quick overview, lets go over the basics of the EB-5 visa:

 

  • The EB-5 visa is an investment based immigrant visa.
  • Successful applicants can become U.S. lawful permanent residents, based on their investment in a U.S. business.
  • Investors are required to invest a minimum of $900,000 or $1,800,000 in a U.S. business (depending on the location of the business).
  • The investment must lead to the creation of 10 full-time jobs for U.S. workers.
  • The investment must be at-risk (meaning that the investment must be subject to either gain or loss).
  • The source of the investor’s funds must be lawful.

 

For a complete explanation of the EB-5 visa, see here:  EB-5 Visa Guide [30 Most Important Questions Answered]

 

Now, back to the EB-5 Process…

 

We’re covering the main stages of the EB-5 process as well as many of the little things you won’t see other EB-5 guides discuss.

 

Lets go…

 

Step 1 of the EB-5 Process 

 

Before you do Anything Consult with an Immigration Attorney that has Experience with the EB-5 visa.

 

Your immigration attorney is crucial to the success of you EB-5 application. They will:

 

  • guide you through the entire EB-5 process
  • determine which investment option best meets the immigration requirements of the EB-5 visa
  • plan the best way to structure your source of funds
  • instruct you on which documents to provide for them to include in your EB-5 petition
  • advise you on which locations qualify as a TEA (targeted employment area) which can qualify for the reduced investment amount of $900,000
  • Along with many other benefits

 

You may already know of all the benefits of consulting with an experienced attorney. But, what I want to draw your attention to is the fact that speaking with an attorney is the very first step you should take.

 

Here’s why:

 

  • An immigration attorney can help you determine whether an EB-5 visa is the right option for you, based on your unique situation.
  • People often have interest in the EB-5 visa because someone they know got a green card through the EB-5 process. Or they may have read something about the EB-5 program and it sounds interesting to them.
  • But by consulting with an attorney, you may likely discover that there’s a much easier and faster way to meet your immigration goals.
  • You wont figure this out until you consult with an immigration attorney that can go over all your other options before deciding on an EB-5 visa.
  • Also, most immigration attorneys offer a FREE initial consultation. So there’s no reason not to get an attorney involved early on.
  • If you still need another reason to start off the EB-5 process by contacting an EB-5 attorney, know this:
  • most immigration attorneys bill on a flat-fee basis.
  • This means that they will charge you a set price to handle your EB-5 application.
  • WHY NOT get more value for your money. Start benefiting from an attorney’s advice as soon as possible (its probably going to cost you the same amount either way).

Step 2 of the EB-5 Process 

 

Select a Business or Project to Invest In

 

Now that you have an attorney, its time to determine where you will invest your funds.

 

The EB-5 program allows you to invest by making a direct investment or by investing in a regional center.

 

Examples of direct investments are starting a new business, purchasing an existing business, or investing in an existing business.

 

Regional centers are businesses designated by the United States Citizenship and Immigration Services. They gather capital from many EB-5 investors to develop large projects like hotels and resorts.

 

If you want to learn more about the difference between regional centers and direct investments, check here: EB-5 Visa Guide [30 Most Important Questions Answered]

 

Selecting the right investment is a critical step in the EB-5 process. You should do extensive research to make sure that you’re picking the best investment to suit your needs.

 

Keep in mind: Your immigration attorney is not your investment advisor. They should not provide you with investment advice unless it pertains to the immigration aspects of your investment.

 

If you would like professional investment advice, you can work with a Registered Investment Advisor or a Broker/Dealer. Be sure to confirm that your advisor has experience with EB-5 investments.

 

There are some differences between these two types of advisors:

 

  • Registered investment advisors charge you for providing investment advice.
  • Broker/dealers usually collect a finders fee from the project that you invest in.
  • Both of these types of advisors are regulated extensively. You can use the Finra BrokerCheck website to get a lot of information on different advisors. This resource will show you how long they’ve been licensed and which exams they’ve taken and passed.

 

Once you narrow down your choices for what to invest in, run these choices by your immigration attorney. They will tell you which investment options best meet the EB-5 immigration requirements.

 

Remember, your investment must create 10 full-time jobs for U.S. workers.

 

If the business you plan to invest in is projected to create 40 jobs and there are 4 EB-5 investors, if one of the jobs isn't created, one investor isn't getting their visa.

 

Step 3 of the EB-5 Process

 

Get A Comprehensive Business Plan

 

Now that you’ve hired an immigration attorney and selected a business to invest in, its time to get your comprehensive business plan.

 

Make sure to work with an business plan writer that has experience preparing EB-5 business plans. Your immigration attorney will help you select an appropriate company.

 

When you apply for an EB-5 visa, you have to submit a comprehensive business plan.

 

Your business plan will show the United States Citizenship and Immigration Services, the following:

 

  • what type of business you will be investing in
  • how much money you will be investing in the business
  • how many jobs you are projecting to create
  • when your jobs are projected to be created
  • how your funds will be spent
  • along with a host of other details

 

An EB-5 business plan is different that an ordinary business plan. It must be compliant with the precedent EB-5 case: Matter of Ho 

 

Don’t worry about the details.

 

An experienced EB-5 business plan writer will know what to do. If there are deficiencies in the business plan, your immigration attorney should be able to spot them and have them corrected before you file your application.

 

Important Note: If you are investing in a regional center, they will usually provide you with a comprehensive business plan.

Step 4 of the EB-5 Process

 

Invest Your Funds into the New Commercial Enterprise

 

Now that you’ve selected a project to invest in and your business plan is complete, its time to invest your funds into the new commercial enterprise.

 

Keep in mind that you are not obligated to actually invest the funds at this point.

 

The EB-5 visa requirements state that at the time of I-526 filing, you are required to provide evidence that you have invested or are actively in the process of investing your capital into the new commercial enterprise.

 

This means that you can transfer the funds into an escrow account. You can then make the release of the funds to the new commercial enterprise conditional on I-526 approval and visa issuance.

 

But, evidence of your mere intent to invest is not enough. Evidence of future arrangements to invest that have no binding present commitment will also not work.

Step 5 of the EB-5 Process

 

Prepare and File the Form I-526 

 

Now we’re getting to the heart of the EB-5 process.

 

Your attorney has likely been working on this step since you hired him/her. Now that you’ve picked your investment and your business plan is ready, preparing and filing the Form I-526 is the main focus.

 

The Form I-526 is the Immigrant Petition for Alien Entrepreneur.

 

  • This is the initial Form that your attorney will file on your behalf to USCIS.
  • Upon approval of the Form I-526, you qualify to apply to become a Conditional Lawful Permanent Resident.
  • As a conditional lawful permanent resident, you have the same rights and privileges as any other lawful permanent resident with one exception: your lawful permanent resident status is only valid for 2 years.
  • The point of this conditional status is that USCIS is giving you a period of 2 years to fully comply with the requirements of the EB-5 program.
  • During this 2 year period, you are to create 10 full-time jobs for U.S. workers. You are also required to keep your capital invested in the EB-5 project.

 

Within your I-526 petition, you will include many documents including:

 

Documentation proving who you are

  • copy of your passport
  • your resume
  • copy of your social security card if you have one
  • copy of your marriage certificate if you have one
  • copy of your diplomas and professional degrees

Documentation Relating to the Business

  • Your comprehensive business plan
  • Articles of Incorporation (for corporation) or Articles of Organization (for LLC)
  • Form I-9 for jobs already created

Documentation Relating to the Source and Path of Funds

  • This documentation will vary quite a bit depending on how you derive your source of funds.
  • For a more detailed breakdown of some of the documents to include in your source of funds section, check the ‘Source of Funds’ section of: EB-5 Visa Guide [30 Most Important Questions Answered]
  • To give you an idea of some of the documentation that will be included:
  • Individual tax returns for the last 5 years
  • Bank statements from your personal bank account before and after your investment funds are transferred to the project you are investing in.
  • If your investment funds are coming from the sale of a property, you will include the purchase and sale agreement, a letter verifying the terms of the sale, and many other documents.
  • If your investment funds are coming from ownership of a business, you will include the tax returns of the business over the last several years, the business’s balance sheets, along with many other documents.
  • If your investment funds are coming from a gift, you will include a letter from the person gifting the funds attesting to the amount of the gift, any conditions associated with the gift, and other important details. You will also include documentation demonstrating how the person gifting the funds obtained the funds lawfully.

 

NOTE: The above list is not a complete list of the documents needed. There are several other documents that must be included in your EB-5 petition.

 

Once you compile all this documentation, your attorney will organize it, and file the completed Form I-526 with USCIS.

 

USCIS takes on average about 18 months to process an I-526 application. 

 

(I know, its a really long time, but we’re hoping and expecting that this timeframe will improve in the future)

Step 6 of the EB-5 Process

 

USCIS Gives a Response

 

Upon reviewing your application USCIS can issue an Approval, a Request for Evidence, a Notice of Intent to Deny, or a Denial.

 

Approval: Congratulations! USCIS has determined that your I-526 petition meets the requirements. Its now time to move to Step 6.

 

Request for Evidence: Not to worry, although not as ideal as an approval, Requests for Evidence (or RFEs) are very common.

 

This just means that USCIS has a question about your application and they want more evidence to clarify something.

 

If you get an RFE, your attorney should prepare a response for you. The response should  provide documentation to answer whatever question USCIS is asking.

 

Assuming that USCIS is satisfied with the additional evidence, they will likely issue an approval.

 

Notice of Intent to Deny: Just as is sounds, Notices of Intent to Deny (or NOIDs) are not good.

 

This means that USCIS has reviewed the application. The application does not appear to have any evidence missing or needing clarification. Still, USCIS intends to deny the petition.

 

Keep in mind, you still have an opportunity to address the issues brought up by USCIS. So, if you haven't hired an immigration attorney up to this point, do so immediately!

 

Denial: USCIS can deny an I-526 petition without first issuing an RFE or an NOID, but, I have never seen this done.

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Step 7 of the EB-5 Process

 

Wait for Your Priority Date to Become Current (For People Born in Mainland China)

 

If you were not born in Mainland China, you can skip this step.

 

This section gets a little technical, so bear with me…

 

(If you don’t fully understand this part, don’t worry, just do the best you can)

 

There are 3 terms I want to quickly go over:

 

Priority Date: The date your immigration petition is filed.

 

  • Example: The date your Form I-526 is filed.

 

Visa Bulletin: The Department of State resource that provides updates regarding each visa category’s cut-off date (by country).

 

 

Cut-Off Date: This is the date shown on the visa bulletin.

 

  • To get your visa or adjust status, your priority date must be before the cut-off date shown on the visa bulletin.

 

How this applies…

 

There are 10,000 visas set aside each year for the EB-5 visa category.

 

Of these 10,000 visas, the Immigration and Nationality Act sets a maximum on how many visas can go to people of a particular country.

 

Over the last several years, the vast majority of EB-5 visas have gone to citizens of Mainland China.

 

The demand for EB-5 visas in Mainland China has exceeded the number of available visas over the last few years.

 

There are now many EB-5 investors from Mainland china with approved I-526 petitions. Still, they must wait for a visa to become available for them before they can apply to become conditional green card holders.

 

These investors cannot get their EB-5 visa or adjust their status until their “priority date” becomes current. This means that they have to wait until their priority date comes before the cut-off date shown on the visa bulletin.

 

What this means for you as an EB-5 investor is…

 

If you were born in Mainland China, be aware that after your I-526 is approved, you will likely have to wait for your priority date to become current before you can apply for your visa or adjust status.

 

If you were not born in Mainland China, the visa backlog currently does not impact you. Proceed to Step 7.

Step 8 of the EB-5 Process

 

Adjustment of Status or Consular Processing

 

Now that your Form I-526 is approved and your priority date is current, you are eligible to apply for your conditional green card.

 

There are two routes to getting your conditional green card once your I-526 is approved: adjustment of status or consular processing.

 

The route you proceed with will depend on whether you are inside of the United States or abroad, at the time you are applying.

Adjustment of Status

 

  • If you are lawfully present in the United States at the time of your I-526 approval you will may apply for an adjustment of status.
  • To adjust status your immigration attorney will file a Form I-485 with USCIS on your behalf.
  • You will also need to have a medical exam conducted by a USCIS-approved doctor to determine whether you have any disqualifying medical conditions.
  • You will also need to be fingerprinted and cross-checked against law enforcement databases.
  • The adjustment of status process takes about six months.

Consular Processing 

 

  • If you are abroad at the time of your I-526 approval, you will likely go through consular processing.
  • If you selected consular processing on your Form I-526, then once your I-526 is approved, your file will be sent to the National Visa Center in New Hampshire.
  • The National Visa Center will then send your immigration attorney instructions on submission of the Form DS-260 (Immigrant Visa Application).
  • After your immigration attorney submits the DS-260 along with all of the necessary documents to the National Visa Center, they will schedule an interview at the U.S. embassy in your home country.
  • Assuming you are admissible to the U.S., upon successful completion of your visa interview, you will receive a visa to enter the United States as a conditional lawful permanent resident.
  • You must also undergo a medical examination.
  • Consular processing takes about 8 to 12 months.

 

Regarding your visa interview:

 

  • The consular officer that interviews you cannot re-adjudicate your I-526 petition. However, they will still likely ask about your EB-5 investment.
  • They may ask who you are, why you decided to make the investment that you made, and where you obtained the funds required to make the investment.
  • The more you are aware of the types of questions that will be asked of you, the more you can prepare for these questions, and you will have a stronger chance of having a successful interview.

Step 9 of the EB-5 Process

 

2 Year Period of Conditional Lawful Permanent Residency

 

Upon completion of your adjustment of status or your entry to the U.S. following consular processing, you are a conditional green card holder.

 

As a conditional green card holder, you have the same rights and privileges as a lawful permanent resident. The main difference is that your conditional green card only lasts for 2 years.

 

During this 2 year period, you should be conducting business pursuant to the EB-5 business plan that you submitted with your Form I-526.

 

During this time you should:

 

1. keep your investment capital at-risk; and

2. create 10 full-time jobs for U.S. workers.

 

Step 10 of the EB-5 Process 

 

Preparing and Filing the Form I-829

 

At this stage, you are coming to the end of your 2 year period of conditional residency.

 

Within 90 days of the expiration of your 2 year conditional green card, you are required to file a Form I-829.

 

The Form I-829 is the petition to remove the condition on your green card to become an unconditional lawful permanent resident.

 

With this petition, you are proving that you have met the requirements of the EB-5 program.

 

Specifically, you are showing that you maintained your investment in the new commercial enterprise for the 2 year period of conditional permanent residence and that you have created 10 full-time jobs for U.S. workers.

 

To prove job creation, here are some of the documents you should include:

 

  • Form I-9 for all employees
  • payroll records
  • Evidence demonstrating each employee’s legal ability to work in the U.S.
  • Examples:
  • copy of birth certificate (for U.S. citizen employees)
  • copy of permanent resident card (for lawful permanent resident employees)

 

To prove that your investment was sustained, here are some of the documents you should include:

 

  • the business’s federal income taxes, balance sheets, and income statements.
  • the K-1 forms for all partners
  • the business’s bank statements

 

Upon approval of your Form I-829 you are officially a lawful permanent resident (a U.S. green card holder)! 

Step 11 of the EB-5 Process 

 

Apply for Naturalization to Become a U.S. Citizen (Optional)

 

As a lawful permanent resident, you may be eligible to become a U.S. citizen.

 

  • The process of becoming a U.S. citizen is called naturalization.
  • You may be eligible to naturalize after you have been a lawful permanent resident for at least 5 years.
  • In order to naturalize, you are required to be physically present in the U.S. for at least 2 and a half years without being absent at any one time for longer than 180 days.

 

Keep in mind: Your 2 years as a conditional lawful permanent resident count toward the 5 year requirement of lawful permanent residency.

 

Therefore, if you’ve consistently lived in the United States since becoming a conditional lawful permanent resident, you may be eligible to naturalize about 5 years after becoming a conditional lawful permanent resident.

 

Some of the other requirements to naturalize:

 

  • You must pass a United States civics examination
  • You must show that you have good moral character
  • You must take an Oath of Allegiance to the USA

 

_______

 

Congratulations, you have just gone through the entire EB-5 process from start to finish. I hope that you learned something new and found this guide helpful.

 

If you are confused about any particular area, don’t worry, it’s completely normal. The EB-5 process is very complex. If you need proof, just know that many immigration attorneys do not handle EB-5 cases due to their complexity.

 

If you have any questions about any of the points discussed or about the EB-5 visa in general, feel free to email me directly at Michael@AshooriLaw.com

 

Working with investors and entrepreneurs is one of my passions and I would be happy to answer any questions you have!

Deepak Chandani
19:10 23 Oct 20
Michael, Lahaina and team are the best immigration lawyer firm - I wish I had them before I see the difference in service they are very responsive and professional. They got my H1B approved for three years.
Vincent Morrow
05:57 19 Oct 20
First of all, let me tell you why you should take my review seriously. I've lived in the US for almost 14 years, and I've always kept my visa status current. So, in the past 14 years, I worked with 4 immigration law firms. I've also met, exchanged... emails, and/or talked with countless other immigration attorneys and lawyers. So, I have A LOT of experience with immigration attorneys (by the way, you should also know that there is a difference between an attorney and a lawyer. You'd want an attorney if possible). And 3 out of the 4 firms who actually worked on my case(s) were excellent (that's why my visa status is still current… obviously haha). I don't want to talk about the one (out of the 4 firms) because that one was bad (thank god, he didn't end up working on my case). I only want to talk about the good ones, and in this case, it's Ashoori Law firm. And I'd like to tell you that, if you're looking for an immigration attorney and/or an immigration law firm, look no further! You have found it! You don't even need to read the rest of my review. Just go, sign the contract, and start working with them now, period!Okay, so you've decided to read further down the line? Fine. Here is why you should choose Ashoori Law. I'm a small business owner, so I know a thing or two about how a group of people get things going and get things done. And in order for something to go right, a lot of other things have to work right as well. Your dinner tastes good? The person(s) who cooked it must have done it right. And so does the farmer who helped grow the veggies you’re having now. Similarly, Ashoori Law must be doing a lot of things right because they just got my visa extended in 14 days! How great is that!?In addition, I’d really like to talk about the one attorney at Ashoori Law who worked on my case and got my visa extended. Her name is Lahaina Araneta (I also want to mention her paralegal, Daniel Chausow, who also did a great job on my visa extension. Moreover, there may be other people at Ashoori Law who helped with my case that I don’t know about). In short, Lahaina is one of the best immigration attorneys I have ever met. She is smart, thorough, resourceful, and positive. She is a genuinely good person who actually cares about immigrants and understands the hardships immigrants go through (let’s face it. The system is stacked against immigrants in every possible way, so having an excellent immigration attorney who truly cares about immigrants is crucial). She always answers my emails within 24 hours if not immediately. She is resourceful, and she has ideas. She knows how to present a case and get positive results (I mean… you may have a good case, but you still need to present it in a good way to get the result(s) you want). And like I said, if something works right, a lot of other things must be working right as well.Okay, I’ll stop here for now (I’ll update my review and write even more as time goes on). In short, just go and work with Ashoori Law. You’ll be glad that you did. Thank you!read more
eddie lavian
21:58 16 Oct 20
MR Ashoori was amazing!!help a lot with the case. Thank you
highland cell24connect
18:45 12 Oct 20
I give an excellent 5 star review to Michael Ashoori law firm and his team especially Lahaina Araneta for their excellent service for E-2 approval. The whole team is very professional and detail oriented and they provide response very promptly.... Along with being compassionate towards their clients, they provide amazing legal advice on immigration matters which helps clients get approval in quickest time possible. Hats off and highly recommend to others !!read more
Life Mizrahi
19:30 08 Oct 20
I would like to thank Michael Ashoori and his wonderful team!We had a very complicated immigration situation that he and his team were able to clear up and accomplish our goals.The price was very reasonable and The timing was excellent.Thank... you for all of the wonderful work.read more
chaya mizrahi
19:17 08 Oct 20
We had a very difficult situation with our legal immigration status and thanks to Michael and his Wonderful team they were able to fix everything within a reasonable amount of time and for a decent price.We highly recommend this team of attorneys... for all of your Immigration needs and beyond.read more
B Goody
21:10 29 Sep 20
Phenomenal service! Rapid response and attention to detail. The team were extremely diligent with the entire process and kept me up to date through the process! We had lots of hiccups with USCIS and CoVid causing multiple delays. I was extremely... impressed by Lahaina and her team. Right until the very end they messaged me, shared updates and provided guidance on next steps. Phenomenal service and. I’ll definitely be using them again. Thank you to the entire team at Ashoori law! I couldn’t have gotten through this process without you!!I highly recommend for all your immigration legal needs!!! Thank you so much!read more
Gene Boekhoudt
02:22 29 Sep 20
Lahaina Araneta of ASHOORI LAW was instrumental in assisting me to get my E2 Visa. The service was always on point and result driven. I was always well informed and prepared for my Interview.I highly recommend using the service of ASHOORI LAW.
Umesh Joshi
20:49 26 Sep 20
It was very nice experience and really helpful for all kind of services
Dmitry Bak
23:46 13 Sep 20
Michael helped us a lot preparing and sending all the needed documents to USCIS. We were very squeezed in time, and I even had to drive from SF to LA to deliver the originals in person, quicker than USPS or Fedex could do, to save one day. Michael... met me in his office at night time, so kind! During the entire period, Michael's team kept us informed about every single step they did, and finally we got all the needed approvals from USCIS. I highly recommend Michael, his company is a great example of how an ideal lawyer/attorney should work.read more
Freuet Solutions
22:49 08 Sep 20
Mike reached out to me personally and gave a good and detail explanation of possible options to take in my case.I recommend you reach out to him with your immigration matters.
Ha Ka
17:48 02 Sep 20
I can only recommend Michael Ashoori for all your immigration needs and inquiries . Very proffessional. Thanks to Michael Ashoori and all his team. I will be back soon again!
Tarek
11:57 02 Sep 20
Started working with Michael Ashoori firm around march this year during the pandemic, but despite these difficult times they guided me step by step and they were always there when ever i had a question or clarification.Lahaina was great, very... professional immigration attorney and of very help through out all the process.She guided me all the way till i got my L1 visa approved.They have this portal system while they post in details every single document needed to ensure the success of the petition. I just had to collect all these documents, upload them on the portal and then they take it from there, they prepared everything and filled up the petition. Their job doesn’t stop here since most of the petitions gets an RFE from USCIS, so they continue by preparing whats needed and resubmit again till i got the reply that my petition was approved.Over all, Michael and his team are very professional and they really know what they are doing and they stay updated with all the recent laws and regulations going on. Highly recommendedread more
Ahmed Gaber
21:44 03 Aug 20
Good office because he offer free consultation
Vj M
03:58 14 Jul 20
Mike and his team helped me with E2. They were very patient and professional throughout the process which got significantly delayed due to Covid. The attorney assigned to me was very knowledgeable and available to advise even at a short notice.... Overall, I had a very pleasant experience and would highly recommend Ashoori Law. Looking forward to working together again in the near future.read more
Gustavo Mas
18:03 07 Jul 20
My experience with Michael is remarkable, he is very professional and has profound knowledge in immigration laws, he made me feel like I was with the right lawyer, so rest assure, if you decide to work with him, you are very likely to be successful... at your case.read more
Allen
18:58 25 Jun 20
Great institutions like Ashoori law firm are made by great people, and there are no finer individuals than those who dedicated themselves to assist clients with different cases like mine. “HONEST & EMPATHETIC” are the words that come to mind when I... think of Lahaina and the rest of her amazing team! Highly professional and experienced immigration attorney who provided excellent service, demonstrating personal attention to all details of your cases. They show compassion by studying clients' stories.They certainly know the immigration process and help you fully prepare for the case and interview. They are always making sure that the whole process goes very smooth. I especially want to thank “Lahaina Araneta” attorney & Michael Ashoori. If you are a really nervous client like me, these people are always super patient and kind with you. If anyone is looking for immigration help, “Ashoori law firm” should be your very first choice for sure because they can really get things done!Working with Lahaina Araneta was absolutely great. She helped me through my entire journey without any hesitations. I always got answers whenever I had questions. I will definitely work with “HER” again on my next journey. She helped me a lot from the beginning of my case (naturalization case). She is attentive to details and very informative. She also quickly responded to my questions about my status. I can't say enough about her. I was completely dazzled by her communication skills and courage in communications with the USCIS office. I am blown away by her integrity and all the hard work she has done on my behalf. I will always be grateful for all of her efforts. Lahaina I just want to thank you for the excellent work you did as my immigration attorney. I would like to express my heartfelt gratitude to you for all the cares and concerns you have shown me, and for working tirelessly. if it weren’t for your analytical skills and knowledge, the matter wouldn’t have been settled by now. I knew you have a lot of clients, so your prompt responses and attention to detail really meant a lot to me. Having an experienced attorney like you on my side was a good sign that I was walking into the right path to win the case. Thank you Lahaina for your support during my N-400 application process, and for helping me to get the desired outcome. You don't know how much your passion impacts the lives of others.read more
Sandie Galloway
18:41 10 Jun 20
Lahaina was one of 4 lawyers that I had an Initial consult with. She was the only one who took the time to truly understand my case. She was patient with me and very responsive. The most important thing is she was the only lawyer who believed in me.... She has world class professionalism. We successfully got my visa and I couldn’t have done it without her. Will never use another law firm. Highly recommend. She truly cares about her clients and goes the extra mile.read more
Rw Right
17:39 06 Jun 20
Look no further. There are solid reasons why they get straight 5 stars in this review.They work as a (great) team and everyone is very knowledgeable and reliable. Micheal posts timely insightful topics on Youtube, in addition to answering all of... your personal questions quickly and responsively.read more
Morne Begemann
09:10 03 Jun 20
We recently needed the assistance of a law firm and due to the fact that we had limited time available to submit our application, many of the law firms that we contacted were not able to assist us. We then came in contact with Michael from Ashoori... Law. Not only did they assist us with our application, they also provided us with efficient, professional service. They really went out of their way to make sure that we meet the deadline and provided us with regular updates on the process. What a wonderful and stress free experience! I would definitely recommend Ashoori Law’s services to any potential clients.read more
lara essa
00:03 16 May 20
Very helpful expert in immigration he help me out in temporary passporthighly recommended
Jackson Lee
02:08 15 May 20
Ashoori and Lahaina are very professional and detail. They responded to my questions with terms that I can understand without any hidden agenda.I wish I hired them when I first applying my E2. They are the lowest in fees and most professional... immigration lawyer that I had encounter. We go through all the process through phone and email without meeting in person and I got my E2 renewal approved.Way better then any immigration lawyer that I had meet in person in NYC.Will definitely stick with them and recommend them to all my friends and family.read more
Paula Almeida Lança
19:27 08 May 20
Michael was amazing!! He gave his full support all the way through with my process and he would always update me and guide me when necessary. Extremely satisfied with his work. (real client)
persia falcon
21:00 05 May 20
Michael and his team were experienced, responsive, knowledgeable, and honest. I would recommend them to my friends.
Vergel Cornelio
02:15 02 May 20
Michael's law firm is compose of professionals who are working more than the sake of their clients. They care on their clients with their situation and help without limitation. They attend to all questions timely and return with immediate solutions... to secure all will be resolved and all worries were eased. I highly recommend and refer this firm to all related US re-entry and immigration concerns.read more
Brandon Kim
09:17 01 May 20
Utilizing the services of Ashoori Law has been a pleasure and an outstanding experience. I highly recommend Ashoori Law to anyone who needs immigration assistance. With the help of Ashoori Law my spouse and I were able to get our immigration... documents seamlessly and without no issues. Ashoori Law is very customer oriented and from Day 1 is always available for you if you have any questions or concerns. Going forward, my spouse and I definitely plan to use Ashoori Law for future immigration services.read more
Divina Chingcuanco
01:33 29 Apr 20
Michael Ashoori is reliable and responds to inquiries with very short waiting time. His law firm handled my travel document efficiently even if it was within a very narrow window. He has kindly mailed my travel document in the most expeditious way... possible. I will definitely engage his services again if I need this type of legal service.read more
Titi Bern
00:04 25 Apr 20
Michael and his team are great! I had them recommended to me by my community who used them. Starting from an initial consultation, to working on the paperwork, to submitting to USCIS, everything as been smooth without any issue. In addition, they... answered all the question we had - SUPER fast - or whenever we called them they were very responsive.read more
Richard Norton
03:17 24 Apr 20
I recently employed the services of Michael Ashoori and Ashoori Law to help with the lodging of a Re Entry Visa for my wife and myself. I am delighted with the result and the expediency with which Asoori Law handled our application.We now have... approval of our visas and couldn't be happier. One of the stand out aspects of dealing with Ashoori was the fact that I could tel or email Michael at any-time and would always receive a prompt response by return email. This personal connection with the company during the process made me feel I was dealing with a friend and that I could reach out to at any time I had a question, rather than being treated as another client. I can in all confidence recommend Ashoori Law for Immigration matters due to this wonderful experience and the way my application was handled. Sincerely. Richard and Judy Norton.read more
Beth Jinks
22:17 23 Apr 20
Ashoori Law handled my green card travel document renewal application professionally and got results faster than I anticipated. Their preliminary phone advice saved my family from unnecessary Transpacific travel, and their subsequent paperwork... management and guidance made the process much less daunting. Ashoori understand the nuances of a changing USA immigration system, and I highly recommend retaining them to navigate it with you. I've tackled similar paperwork alone before, but after this experience I'll be working with Ashoori again in the future.read more
Kuldeep Kaur
17:42 10 Apr 20
I had question about eb1 process and my alternatives to stay along with priority date timelines ie options to move over to another visa type like h1, to continue waiting for green card processing, all of my questions are very well taken by the... immigration consultant ( Karla Samayoa) , she has very strong hold on the processes and options available to candidates, i would certainly recommend her for immigration consulting on l1a visa and eb1 visa and green card application. I give her 5 startsThank youread more
Hansel Gonzalez
13:56 09 Apr 20
I reached out to Ashoori Law in order to obtain my US Re-Entry permit late last year. The whole team was friendly, knowledgeable and prompt to my many questions. Michael himself would answer any questions along the way after submission, which... assured me my case was important and on their radar. Having worked with various immigration lawyers in various countries I’ve worked at (6, so far), I know that is not always the case. I recommend to consider Ashoori Law for your US immigration needs, and I expect to reach out to them whenever I next need services in regards to US immigration.read more
ajay sharma
18:04 08 Apr 20
Michael and his team members are very professional and easy to work with. For my reentry permit application I was running bit tight on time but Michael helped all possible way to make the process smoother and faster.Their process of data... collection, fees etc are very streamlined and transparent.Michale was always approachable and very fast on his responses. He always made sure that I get the latest update immediately if their office heard anything about my case.In short, I highly recommend Michael and his team. You will enjoy working with them.read more
Tiyu Wang
14:27 18 Mar 20
Working with Michael was a pleasure from the beginning to the end. Through the experience of obtaining my re-entry permit, I got to witness first-hand his professionalism, expertise, and attention to detail.Some things that I really... appreciated:-Taking the time to work out the strategy for me, explaining the options I have and the solutions to potential situations that could arise.-Responding quickly and with well-thought out responses, when I emailed him with questions.-Being very meticulous (him as well as his staff) in ensuring the that logistics of my application were executed expediently and carefully.My case was not a big one, yet Michael behaved as if it were a big case. For that he certainly has earned my return business for immigration cases in the future, and I heartily recommend his services to anyone looking for a truly exceptional immigration lawyer.read more
Nello Trops
13:26 12 Mar 20
I have retained Ashoori Law for my immigration needs, I did work with a previous immigration attorney as well this is what I can say. The amount of information Ashoori Law provides to the general public by maintaining newsletters, blogs etc... sold... me, Ashhori Law takes the time to inform the general public and educate the general public who is interested in immigrated to the US that is of great value. After hiring Ashhori Law the process was smooth and clear, the response times are optimal. They are honest and are not just sitting around trying to make a quick buck when there's no hope. They truly advise you properly and are very transparent as well, no hidden fees. They were successful in filling my immigration needs and hands down I can recommend them to all my friends and contacts. Michael and Lahaina are professionals, they respond quickly and inform you quickly of any changes if any. I will definitely use them again in the near future. Thank youread more
emma Daniels
02:18 06 Mar 20
Karla was Very friendly to chat with and helpful
James Corcoran
14:38 05 Mar 20
I posting this for my wife in China VPN not workingI am so impressed by Mr. Michael Ashoori and will not hesitate to recommend him to you as one of the best immigration attorneys!!!For my case, I had an urgent timeline to apply for a re-entry... permit. To make it more complicated, I had multiple international travel plans during the application period. I reached out to quite a few attorneys for assistances. They either turned me down directly due to the time constrain or did not reply at all. On the contrary, Michael assured the feasibility of such an application during the first teleconference. Just as what he told me, all worked out perfectly under his coordination.To me, the following sets Mr. Michael Ashoori and his team apart from most of his peers:1) He is not only knowledge of the immigration laws and regulations but also highly familiar of the immigration authorities’ operation details. This is extremely critical to an urgent case since every step matters.2) He has the right AI system setup to monitor the daily workflows and handle the repetition workloads. Therefore, his team can focus on the key variables and client interactions efficiently.3) His fee is very reasonable and competitive.4) He cares about his clients as a friend. That is precious in a business world.You are in good hands if you pick Mr. Michael Ashoori and his team!read more
Humayun Tariq
08:09 05 Mar 20
I applied for the re- entry permit with Micheal Ashoori. I can say without a doubt, Micheal is the most helpful lawyer I have found there. What I love about Micheal is that he is really accessible to anyone, unlike other lawyers. He is always... available for a consultation call and clears out the queries patiently. He gives the best advice suited to the situation which has really helped me out with my planning.When I decided to apply for my re- entry permit with Micheal, he assisted me throughout the process. I just had to mail him the signed copy of the application and rest was handled by him and his team.Also, his team members, specifically Lahaina Araneta, are a joy to work with. They have been very responsive on e-mail even if it is late at night.Micheal, along with his team members, is very polite and never rushes an answer.I would definitely recommend everyone to work with Micheal if they need legal assistance in delicate matters such as immigration. He is the best you can get out there in terms of being responsible, responsive and accessible.read more
Sriram Akella
06:07 27 Feb 20
Worked with Micheal for applying reentry permits for my wife and myself. He prepared all the paper work and was ready so that we could file the day we landed in US. Very Friendly and answered all my questions with patience.Would definitely... recommend him for any immigration related work.read more
bardia bahrami
00:02 26 Feb 20
He was awesome, everything was straight forward with Michael and his team. I received my re-entry permit 6 weeks after submitting my request .
Tom Tam
17:43 22 Feb 20
This lawyer was awesome and helped my family with our own immigration case! 10/10 would recommend!
Remo Barducci
07:56 14 Feb 20
From the very first call where we were taken through the process right through to completion, all the interaction with Ashoori has been of the highest level . The advice we were given , how we were steered through the whole process and the brilliant... communication was simply faultless . Even though we are based in Australia on the other side of the world , time zones were no issue . Anyone planning on using Ashoori law, we recommend them very highlyread more
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Michael Ashoori Headshot

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.