As the H-1B Visa is Dismantled, Indian Immigrants Look to the EB-5 Visa

What are the requirements for an EB-5 visa?

The H-1B visa program will soon be changing.  President Trump has stated that he will sign an executive order calling for review of the H-1B immigration visa.  Through the H-1B program, companies can bring in immigrant workers who work in a specialty occupation.  Specialty occupations could include technology, chemistry, social sciences, education, law, and the like. In practice, most H-1B visas have gone towards workers in the technology field, with many coming out of India and Southeast Asia.  Now, Indian workers looking to immigrate into the U.S. may turn to the EB-5 visa program

The EB-5 Visa Program

The EB-5 immigrant investor visa program was created by Bill Clinton in the ‘90s.  Under the program, immigrants can become a conditional permanent resident within two years and move towards permanent resident status shortly thereafter.  To be eligible for the EB-5 visa, the alien must have established a business or invested in an existing business.  Investments must amount to at least $500,000 or $1 million, depending on factors surrounding the business. 

Investments can be in the form of cash, inventory, or other tangible property.  Indians investing n “targeted employment areas,” which includes rural areas or areas with high unemployment rates, will need to invest the lesser amount of $500,000.  The investment must create at least ten full-time jobs for U.S. citizens or lawful immigrants.  While the EB-5 visa has been criticized for turning immigration into nothing more than a transactional deal, it does allow thousands of productive new immigrants to enter our country without the need for selection in a lottery system, like the H-1B program. 

As the H-1B visa program continues to come under fire, more wealthy Indian families are exploring the EB-5 visa.  Indians or immigrants from any other country should contact an immigration lawyer for more information about their legal rights.  The EB-5 visa is complex and will require varying forms of evidence.  Your lawyer can help you to successfully apply for the visa so that you and your family can lawfully start on the path towards citizenship.