The renown EB-5 Immigrant Investor Program has recently been updated.
Under a new rule published by the U.S. Department of Homeland Security, changes to the EB-5 Immigrant Investor Program were implemented in 2019.
The new rule modernises the EB-5 program by:
- Providing priority date retention to certain EB-5 investors
- Increasing the required minimum investment amounts to account for inflation
- Reforming certain targeted employment area (TEA) designations
- Clarifying USCIS procedures for the removal of conditions on permanent residence
- Making other technical and conforming revisions
Priority date retention
Certain immigrant investors will keep the priority date of a previously approved EB-5 petition when they file a new petition. The revision also saw an increase in minimum investments.
- The standard minimum investment amount has increased to 1 800 000 USD (from 1 000 000 USD) to account for inflation
- The minimum investment in a TEA has increased to 900 000 USD (from USD 500 000 USD) to account for inflation
- Future adjustments will also be tied to inflation (per the consumer price index for all urban consumers, or CPI-U), and will occur every 5 years
Targeted employment area (TEA) designations
- A review to determine the designation of high-unemployment TEAs
- No longer defer to TEA designations made by state and local governments
- Specially designated high-unemployment TEAs will now consist of a combination of census tracts. To include the tract or adjoining tracts in which the new commercial enterprise is principally doing business, including any or all directly adjacent tracts
- Provided they have experienced an average unemployment rate of at least 150% of the national average unemployment rate, TEAs may now include cities and towns with a population of 20 000 or more outside of metropolitan statistical areas
These changes are designed to direct investment to areas most in need, and increase the consistency of how high-unemployment areas are defined in the program.
Clarified procedures for the removal of conditions on permanent residence
- The new rule specifies that derivative family members, who are lawful permanent residents, must independently file to remove conditions on their permanent residence
- The new rule includes flexibility in interview locations
- The new rule updates the regulations to reflect the current process for issuing Green Cards
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