In terms of employment, the conditional green card is the same as a green card without any restrictions. Accordingly, like any EB-5 investor with permanent resident status, an EB-5 investor with a conditional green card is permitted to live and work anywhere within the United States.
One factor that prospective investors may wish to consider when selecting a project is location. Currently, the threshold investment amount stands at $1,050,000. However, for projects located in a targeted employment area (TEA), the minimum investment amount is $800,000. This lower investment amount could prove beneficial and appealing to many prospective EB5 investors.
There are two categories for TEAs. Rural TEAs refer to regions outside metropolitan statistical areas, as defined by the Office of Management and Budget. Typically, a rural TEA is a city or town with a population of less than 20,000 people. On the other hand, high-unemployment TEAs are typically cities or towns with a population greater than 20,000. To qualify for TEA designation, the area must have an unemployment rate that is 150% greater than the national average.
For EB-5 investors who plan on investing directly, location is especially important because they will be expected to be heavily involved in the management and daily operations of the new commercial enterprise (NCE). The level of required involvement will likely necessitate a certain physical proximity to the business itself, making the location of the project an important factor for direct investors to consider.
However, for EB-5 investors who plan on investing through a regional center, location may be of secondary importance, as indirect investors are not required to participate in the management of the business; their role is limited to policy making decisions. This leniency when it comes to managerial responsibility gives indirect investors the freedom to live apart from the project in which they invest.