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Visa By Investment

To qualify as an immigrant investor or obtain visa by investment, a foreign national must invest, without borrowing, the following minimum qualifying capital dollar amounts in a qualifying commercial enterprise: $1,000,000 (U.S.); or $500,000 (U.S.) in a high-unemployment or rural area, considered a targeted employment area. A qualifying investment must, within two years, create full-time jobs for at least 10 U.S. citizens, lawful permanent residents, or other immigrants authorized to work in the United States, not including the investor and the investor’s spouse, sons, or daughters. The First Step: File a Petition To be considered for an E5 immigrant investor visa, an applicant must file Form I-526, Immigrant Petition by Alien Entrepreneur, with U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS). For more information on qualifying as an immigrant investor and filing the Form I-526 petition, see EB-5 Immigrant Investor, EB-5 Immigrant Investor Process, EB-5 Regional Centers, and Permanent Workers on the USCIS website. Labor certification is not required for immigrant investors. The Form I-526 petition must be approved by the USCIS before applying for an immigrant visa at a U.S. Embassy or Consulate outside the United States. Next Steps: Fees and Visa Application After USCIS approves the petition, it is sent to the National Visa Center (NVC). Once received, NVC will assign a case number for the petition. When an applicant’s priority date meets the most recent qualifying date, NVC will instruct the applicant to complete Form DS-261, Choice of Address and Agent. (NOTE: If you already have an attorney, NVC will not instruct you to complete Form DS-261). NVC will begin pre-processing the applicant’s case by providing the applicant with instructions to submit the appropriate fees. After the appropriate fees are paid, NVC will request that the applicant submit the necessary immigrant visa documents, including application forms, civil documents, and more. Learn more about National Visa Center visa case processing and NVC's EB-5 Investor Assistance Desk. Can My Family Members also Receive Immigrant Visas? Based on your approved petition, your spouse and minor unmarried children, younger than 21, may apply for immigrant visas with you. Like you, they must also fill out required application forms, obtain required civil documents, pay the required fees, and undergo medical examinations. Same-sex spouses of U.S. citizens and Lawful Permanent Residents (LPRs), along with their minor children, are now eligible for the same immigration benefits as opposite-sex spouses. Consular officers at U.S. Embassies and Consulates will adjudicate their immigrant visa applications upon receipt of an approved I-130 or I-140 petition from USCIS. For further information, please see our FAQ’s. Numerical Limitations Immigrant investor visas are issued in the chronological order in which the petitions were filed until the annual numerical limit for the category is reached. The filing date of a petition becomes the applicant's priority date. Immigrant visas cannot be issued until an applicant's priority date is reached. In certain heavily oversubscribed categories, there may be a waiting period of several years before a priority date is reached. Check the Visa Bulletin for the latest priority dates. Fees Fees are charged for the following services: Filing of Form I-526, Immigrant Petition by Alien Entrepreneur (this fee is charged by USCIS) Processing an immigrant visa application, Form DS-260 (see Note below) Medical examination and required vaccinations (costs vary) Other costs may include: translations; photocopying charges; fees for obtaining the documents you need for the immigrant visa application (such as passport, police certificates, birth certificates, etc.); and expenses for travel to the U.S. Embassy or Consulate for your visa interview. Costs vary from country to country and case to case. For current fees for Department of State services, see Fees for Visa Services. For current fees for USCIS services, see Check Filing Fees on the USCIS website. Note: Fees must be paid for each intending immigrant, regardless of age, and are not refundable. Fees should not be paid to the NVC or paid at the U.S. Embassy or Consulate where you have your visa interview unless specifically requested. Applicants will be provided with instructions by the NVC on where and when to pay the appropriate fees. Do not send payments to the NVC’s address in Portsmouth, New Hampshire. Required Documentation In general, the following documents are required: Passport(s) valid for six months beyond the intended date of entry into the United States, unless longer validity is specifically requested by the U.S. Embassy/Consulate in your country. Please review the instructions for guidance. Form DS-260, Immigrant Visa and Alien Registration Application. Preview a sample DS-260 (6.4MB). Two (2) 2x2 photographs. See the required photo format explained in Photograph Requirements. Civil Documents for the applicant. See Documents the Applicant Must Submit for more specific information about documentation requirements, including information on which documents may need to be translated. The consular officer may ask for more information during your visa interview. Bring your original civil documents (or certified copies) such as birth and marriage certificates, as well as legible photocopies of the original civil documents, and any required translations to your immigrant visa interview. Original documents and translations can then be returned to you. Financial Support – At your immigrant visa interview, you must demonstrate to the consular officer that you will not become a public charge in the United States. Completed Medical Examination Forms – These are provided by the panel physician after you have completed your medical examination and vaccinations (see below).

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