The EB-5 Visa Process: A Beginner's Guide


The EB-5 visa is a popular option for foreign nationals seeking to obtain permanent residency in the United States. This guide will provide an overview of the process of the EB5 visa in Dubai and key information for beginners interested in applying.

Understanding the EB-5 visa:

The EB-5 visa requires individuals to invest a significant amount of capital in a qualifying U.S. business. There are two investment options: a minimum investment of $1.8 million in a new commercial enterprise or $900,000 if the investment is made in a targeted employment area (TEA). TEAs are areas with high unemployment or rural regions.

Meeting eligibility criteria:

To qualify for the EB-5 visa, applicants must demonstrate that their investment creates or preserves at least ten full-time jobs for qualifying U.S. workers within two years of their admission to the U.S. as a Conditional Permanent Resident. Additionally, investors need to prove the lawful source of their investment funds.

Choosing a regional center or direct investment:

Investors can opt for a direct investment in their own business or choose a USCIS-approved regional center. Regional centers pool investments from multiple EB-5 investors to fund large-scale projects that are expected to create jobs. Deciding between direct investment and a regional center depends on individual preferences and risk tolerance.

Filing the I-526 petition:

The first step in the EB-5 process is filing the Form I-526, Immigrant Petition by Alien Entrepreneur. This document establishes the investor’s eligibility and the legitimacy of their investment. Approval leads to conditional permanent residency for the investor.

Conditional permanent residency:

Upon approval of the I-526 petition, investors and their eligible family members are granted conditional permanent residency for two years. During this period, they enjoy the same rights and privileges as other U.S. permanent residents.

Filing the I-829 petition:

To remove the conditions on their residency, investors must file Form I-829, Petition by Entrepreneur to Remove Conditions. This petition requires evidence that the required jobs have been created, and the investment has been maintained.

Obtaining permanent residency:

Upon approval of the I-829 petition, investors and their families receive unconditional permanent residency in the U.S. They can live, work, and study anywhere in the country without any further immigration restrictions.