Hart Internals_0014_EB-5 (1)

 

Overview

 

At Risk Capital
Types of Investments
Capital
Number of Investors
Investor’s Role in the Enterprise
Conditional Green Card

 

Investors willing to invest $1,000,000 in a business in the United States or $500,000 if the business is located in an impoverished area may qualify under this sub-category. The business must be a new commercial enterprise that employs 10 full-time United States citizens or authorized immigrant workers.

7.1% of worldwide visas per year are allocated for this category with 3,000 of those green cards set aside for foreign nationals willing to invest in rural areas with a population less than 20,000 or an urban area of high unemployment. The state government must specifically designate the area as a high unemployment area for green card through investment purposes. The unemployment rate must be certified by the state government to be at least 150% of the national average.

 

Hart Internals_0013_EB-5_At Risk Capital (1)

 

At Risk Capital

 

To show that the petitioner has invested or is actively in the process of investing the required amount of capital, the alien must show actual commitment of the required amount of capital. Evidence to show that capital is actually committed or at risk may consist of the following:

Bank statements;

Receipts, invoices, or purchase contracts for assets purchased for use in the business;

Bills of lading or transit insurance policies which evidence transfers of property from the foreign national’s country for use in the U.S. enterprise;

Stock certificates in the new business with underlying evidence of monies transferred; or

Loans personally guaranteed and secured by assets of the investor and not by assets of the business.

 

Types of Investments

 

The enterprise may be established in three different ways:

The business may be an original business;

The investor may expand an existing business which results in an increase either in its net worth or the number of employees by at least 40%. Therefore, the existing business must be large enough so that a 40% increase will amount to the fixed required dollar amount ($1 million or $500,000) and employment minimums in the category. In other words, the total increase will amount to at least 140 percent of the pre-expansion net worth or number of employees.

The investor may invest in an existing business. Purchasing an enterprise which is in financial trouble releases the investor from having to increase the net worth or the number of employees. The $1 million investment is still required. To qualify as a troubled business, the company must have been in operation for a minimum of two years and have had an annual loss equal to at least 20% of the company’s net worth over those two years. No employees may be laid off.

 

Capital

 

The investment does not have to be made entirely in cash. Certificates of deposits, loans and notes can be included in the total amount. The value of equipment or inventory or equipment may also be counted. Loans may be used so long as the investor gives a personal guarantee and the loan is adequately secured but not by assets of the business being purchased.

 

Number of Investors

 

More than one investor may join together in the petition through a single company. However, the individual investment of each petitioner must still be for the minimum qualifying amount and each individual investment must result in the creation of at least ten full-time positions for qualifying employees. For example, if 3 foreign nationals each invest $1 million in a new business that will employ at least 30 American workers, all 3 investors qualify for green cards.

The several owners of the enterprise may include persons who are not seeking classification under this category, may be non-natural persons such as corporations or partnerships both foreign and domestic, provided that the source of all capital invested is identified and all invested capital has been derived by lawful means.

 

Investor’s Role in the Enterprise

 

The investor must prove that s/he will be involved in the day-to-day management of the new business, either actively or through policy formulation.

 

Conditional Green Card

 

Green cards through investment are first issued conditionally for two years. Thereafter the foreign national must go through a procedure to remove the condition. At that time, CIS will be looking for documentation such as income tax returns to show that the investor has actually established the commercial enterprise; financial statements to demonstrate that the investor actually invested the required capital; bank statements, invoices, receipts, contracts and the like as evidence that the investor has substantially met and maintained the capital investment requirements; and finally, payroll records, tax documents, Forms I-9 to show that the business generated employment (or will soon do so) for ten U.S. workers. If the investment was in a distressed business, the evidence should show that the pre-investment level of employees was maintained during the two-year conditional residency period.

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