Traditional Direct Program vs Regional Center Program

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EB-5 Investment Attorneys Guide Foreign Nationals Through the Traditional Direct Program to obtain permanent legal residency status in the United States

For foreign entrepreneurs looking to immigrate to the United States, one of the most lucrative and expedited paths is through an EB-5 investment visa in which you invest in a US commercial enterprise. At Barst Mukamal & Kleiner, LLP, our attorneys have been focusing our immigration law practice on EB-5 visas since the 1990s.

We have extensive experience helping investors lawfully reside in the US. One of the paths to obtaining an EB-5 visa is through the traditional direct program. We have helped numerous investors to get through this program and one step closer to obtaining a green card. We leverage our resources and skill to guide you through the process, ensuring that you successfully reach your international business goals.

Traditional direct program vs. regional center program

There are two main options for applying for an EB-5 visa: traditional direct and regional center. The main difference between the two is that, in a regional center program, you invest in a business through a government-approved organization while, in a traditional direct program, you invest directly into the enterprise. The programs have different processes, but the result is the same: obtaining your investor visa. After two years, you can receive permanent legal resident status, as long as you can prove that your investment has not been retracted and has led to the required job creation.

Our attorneys have guided clients through both programs. We closely examine your situation to determine which option is appropriate for you, and then we work with you through every step of the process.

What are the requirements for the traditional direct program?

In order to qualify for the traditional direct path, the following requirements must be met:

  • The investment must be in a new commercial enterprise, or one that was:
    • Established after November 29, 1990, or
    • Established on or before November 29, 1990, and has been restructured in a way that it results in a new enterprise; or, there is a 40% increase in the net worth or number of employees.
  • The investment is at least $1 million, unless the enterprise is located in a targeted employment area (TEA) or rural area (RA), where the investment must be at least $500,000.
  • The investor must prove that the investment will directly impact the creation of at least 10 full-time jobs within two years.
  • The investor must take an active role in business operations.
  • The funds must be from a lawful source.

The EB-5 investment attorneys at BarstLLP ensure you understand what you must do to qualify for this program. We can then help you meet all of these requirements and start your path toward obtaining a green card and citizenship.

Advantages of an EB-5 direct investment

When deciding if the traditional direct program is the best path for you toward an EB-5 investor visa, it is important that you understand the benefits. Here are some of the advantages of this option:

  • The direct approach is much faster than working through a regional center.
  • It is often a less complicated process to invest individually.
  • It is often more clear what types of jobs your investment will be able to help create.
  • Investing directly is usually less expensive than going through a regional center.
  • The traditional direct program is a less formal process.

To learn more about why this option might be right for you, consult with one of our experienced attorneys.

How an EB-5 visa affects your family

A major concern for anyone immigrating to another country is the impact on their family. Fortunately, an EB-5 visa allows your family to remain lawfully with you in the United States. Your spouse and any unmarried children under the age of 21 may remain with you in the country on your two-year conditional basis. Once that time period has elapsed, your status is changed to that of a permanent legal resident. Your spouse and children also have the opportunity to change their status and obtain green cards. Your spouse and children will be able to work or go to school in the US. Because of our vast experience in many areas of immigration law, we understand the implications for your family when you apply for an EB-5 visa. We can help you through the legal process.

Contact our experienced EB-5 investment attorneys to learn more

As a foreign investor looking to permanently reside in the United States, the traditional direct program for an EB-5 visa might be the best path for you. The attorneys at Barst Mukamal & Kleiner, LLP, are prepared to help you through the process. From our offices in New York and New Jersey, our lawyers have the skill and experience to handle the most complex immigration issues. Contact us today.

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