What is the process of applying for a green card under this EB-5 category?

Regardless of whether an investment is made directly in the foreigner’s company in the U.S. or through a Regional Center the process of applying for a green card is the following:


  •   A Form I-526 with all supporting documents is filed with USCIS to establish eligibility under either the Basic Program or the Regional Center Pilot Program.
  •   Upon approval of I-526, the alien files Form I-485, Application to Register Permanent

Residence or Adjust Status, if the individual is in the U.S. If the person is outside the United States he or she must complete the process at the U.S. consulate abroad.

  •   Initially the foreign investor is granted conditional green card for a two-year period. These two years are given to complete the investment if it was not made by a one-time lump sum, but instead split in the increments, and to create or preserve 10 job positions for U.S. workers.
  •   Within 90 days of the 2-year conditional green card’s expiration date, the investor must file a Petition to Remove the Conditions to request removal of conditional permanent residency. Evidence of full required investment and creation or preservation of 10 employment positions is submitted with this petition and, provided all requirements are satisfied, the investor, his/her spouse and children under 21 receive legal permanent residence in the United States.


As can be seen, the process of obtaining a green card through investment is lengthy in time and extremely complicated for a person not practicing in this area of law. Not only the knowledge of immigration process is required, but also the ability to evaluate the legitimacy of investment opportunities and anticipate the road ahead. Potential foreign investors should always obtain a comprehensive consultation from an experience immigration attorney before they make any moves in the direction of investment-based immigration and then work closely with their legal counsel during the process until they get a permanent green card.

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