What is direct EB-5 investment?

EB-5 programs have been under the spotlight recently, as a portion of the program expired: regional center investment. Thankfully, for foreign nationals looking to obtain citizenship by investment, the direct EB-5 investment is still a valid and achievable option. 


The direct investment is quite literally investing directly in a commercial enterprise, as either a sole proprietorship, partnership or joint venture, and creating at least 10 jobs lasting for at least two years. Investors can now invest $500,000 if the commercial enterprise is located in a targeted employment area, or $1 million if it is not. Direct investment allows investors to operate independently and control their investment, which is appealing and preferred by a majority of EB-5 investors. 


Not sure where to invest? 


Businesses that offer international investment opportunities for expansion and are in growing demand continue to be popular, such as hospitality, sustainability, biopharma, and tech. In Florida, we recently covered a few growing industries that hold immense investment opportunities and predicted growth with attractive ROI. 


As with all visa programs, there are requirements in place. While the above mentioned financial investment and job creation minimums are listed above, let’s expand on it a bit.


Financial investments

Investors can now invest $500,000 in a targeted employment area, or $1 million if it is not. Cash, equipment, inventory, other tangible property, cash equivalents, and indebtedness secured by assets owned by immigrant investors count as capital if they are personally and primarily liable and the assets of the new commercial enterprise upon which the petition is based are not used to secure any of the indebtedness. All capital will be valued at fair-market value in U.S. dollars.


EB-5 job creation

An EB-5 investor must invest the required amount of capital in a new commercial enterprise that will create full-time positions for at least 10 qualifying employees. In the case of a troubled business, the EB-5 investor may rely on job maintenance. The investor must show that the number of existing employees is, or will be, no less than the pre-investment level for a period of at least two years.


As with many complex immigration programs and applications, it is best to seek the professional expertise of an attorney. Contact our team of experienced EB-5 investment attorneys today for a consultation on your case.