When is an EB-5 investor able to attend a U.S. college or university?

An EB-5 investor will be able to attend a U.S. college or university once they become a conditional permanent resident. With a conditional green card, the EB-5 investor is permitted to study anywhere within the United States. They will also be eligible for reduced-cost in-state tuition for public colleges and universities. Statistically, having a U.S. green card increases the possibility of being accepted to a post secondary institution by 350%.

To acquire conditional permanent resident status, the EB5 investor must file and gain approval of Form I-526; if they are already residing in the United States with a nonimmigrant visa at the time, they are eligible to concurrently file Form I-485 to adjust status.

F-1 Visa

If the foreign national is an international student who previously entered the United States on an F-1 (Academic Student) visa before deciding to begin the EB-5 process and file Form I-526, they must comply with the stipulations of their F-1 visa, attend school, and complete their chosen program in accordance with the regulations of their F-1 visa. However, having an F-1 visa will not qualify the international student for lower cost in-state tuition. Qualifying for lower cost in-state tuition is only possible as a U.S. green card holder.

Dual Intent

If the EB-5 investor had previously entered the United States on an F-1 visa, they will not be able to renew their F-1 visa once they begin the EB-5 process. The EB-5 visa is an immigrant visa and a pending I-526 petition is indicative of the applicant having the intent to relocate to the United States permanently. Maintaining status for the F-1 visa requires proof of temporary, nonimmigrant intent. Furthermore, the F-1 visa does not carry dual intent. As such, upon expiration of their current F-1 visa, the EB-5 investor must wait until they acquire conditional permanent resident status to resume studies, if they wish.