EB-5 immigrant investor program
What is the Amount of the Investment
The United States EB-5 visa, employment-based fifth preference category or EB-5 Immigrant Investor Visa Program, created in 1990, provides a method for eligible Immigrant Investors to become Lawful Permanent Residents informally known as “green card” holders—by investing at least $1.8 million (since November 21, 2019) to finance a business in the United States that will employ at least 10 American workers. Learn more about the EB-5 Investment.
Nature of the Qualified Investment
The Minimum EB-5 Investment Is $900,000, but $450,000 Can Be Borrowed. You should contact your tax advisor to make sure it is a good business investment. It is one thing to invest in a business for immigration purposes and yet another for ‘business purposes’. Income tax is always a consideration when applying for an EB-5 Investment Visa. While it will not work if you invest in non-qualifying investments, it will also not work for business purposes if there are tax problems and the business is not viable in the real world.
Using a Loan
So, yes, you may take out a loan for your EB5 investment capital. However, a loan is trickier to handle than a gift. If secured by personal assets, be prepared to show a promissory note listing the personal security that secures the loan. The USCIS permits unsecured loans for the EB-5 program. However, it must be real and not just a ‘pretend’ loan so you can show the investment for the EB-5. Some people even go so far as to use their retirement funds for the the EB-5.
Using a Gift
There is no prohibition on using funds that were gifted for the EB-5 investment. The immigrant investor will need to provide a gift instrument documenting gifts to the immigrant investor, as well as document how the gift. The qualifying investment does not only have to come from income or retirement. The funds or a portion of the funds can come from a gift (many times from your parents.)
“If you do not make a qualified investment for the EB-5, you will not get the EB-5 approved.”— Brian D. Lerner, Immigration Lawyer