Question: How can I make an earlier investment qualify for EB-5?
Question Detail: I am a partner for a company in Asia. In October of last year, my company invested $1.5 million in a real estate project in Texas. Since then, we have hired 20 employees already, and I am the sole owner of the U.S. company. How can I apply for the EB-5 category now with that investment? What premium processing options do I have?
An eligible person for EB-5 program is to invest $1 million or $500,000 (for TEA) in a new commercial enterprise that employs 10 full-time US workers. The investment funds must be paid from investor’s personal account, rather than company’s business account. To determine whether the earlier investment is eligible for EB-5, we need to determine where does the US company’s investment come from. Namely, who is the entity made the investment. The earlier investment is not qualified for EB-5 if the investment was made by the company in Asia. In other words, assuming US company got a loan from Asian company, if the loan was secured by the Asian company’s shares in the US company, the Asian company is the owner or parent company of the US company. As a result, the Asian company is the entity making the investment. However, if you can prove it is your personal investment, such as the loan was secured by your personal property, you may be satisfied as an EB-5 investor because you made your personal investment. What if you are not eligible for EB-5 because the investment capitals are from the company in Asia? Can you pursue LPR? Yes. You may choose to apply for L-1A (Intracompany Transferee Executive or Manager) then adjust status in the US. L-1A visa enable US employer to transfer executive or manager from its affiliates located in foreign country to its US office. When the Asian company is the owner or parent company of the US company, you must work as Executive, which enable you to file LPR application. There is no premium processing for I-526 petition. Now I-526 processing time is about 13.2 months.