At what point can an EB-5 investor permanently reside in the United States?

After approval of their I-526 petition, an EB-5 investor may apply for conditional permanent resident status. If successful, they will be issued a green card by United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS), which will show the approval and expiration dates of the investor’s conditional resident status. This green card will allow them to reside in the United States for up to two years, after which the green card will automatically expire.

To be granted conditional permanent resident status, the EB-5 investor must first have successfully filed Form I-526, Immigrant Petition by Alien Entrepreneur. USCIS will adjudicate the petitioner’s application based on a number of factors, including compliance with EB-5 regulations and proof that the investor garnered the minimum amount of investment funds. The threshold amount will depend on the location of the project; a business in a targeted employment area (TEA) has a lower minimum investment amount. The investment capital must be lawfully sourced, and the commercial enterprise (NCE) the investor chooses to invest in must be an eligible U.S. enterprise. The investor must also prove that their investment will create a minimum of 10 full-time jobs.

After the two-year conditional residency period, the EB-5 investor may file Form I-829, Petition by Entrepreneurs to Remove Conditions. Upon approval of this petition, the conditional restriction will be lifted, and the investor and their family will be granted permanent resident status and be permitted to remain in the United States indefinitely.

When assessing the investor’s I-829 petition, USCIS will adjudicate based on a number of factors, including whether the job creation requirement has been met, proof that an eligible NCE was established, and evidence that an investment was made and the investment remained at risk. Timing is also critical, as the EB5 investor must file Form I-829 from 90 days before the expiry of their conditional permanent resident status period.

Five years after receiving permanent resident status, the EB-5 investor and their family will be eligible to apply for U.S. citizenship.