EB-5 INVESTOR GREEN-CARD PROGRAM
Traditional and Digital Asset Investments
Cryptocurrency Investigations and Expert Opinions in Response to USCIS
Dilendorf Law Firm provides all-round legal support to individuals seeking to obtain U.S. residency and become U.S. citizens through participation in the EB-5 Immigrant Investor Visa Program. We assist at all stages of the EB-5 process: from determining eligibility for the Program and identifying suitable investment projects/regional centers to filing a petition for permanent residency and then U.S. citizenship.
We also assist clients holding large digital asset portfolios with structuring EB-5 investments using cryptocurrencies, such as Bitcoin. Depending on a particular investor, cryptocurrency and the project, large holders of digital assets can make qualifying investments either directly in cryptocurrency or properly convert crypto assets into USD and qualify for the EB-5 Program.
Our attorneys have extensive experience providing legal support to foreign investors and businesses in the U.S. Our team’s expertise in business and immigration allows us to account for the intricacies of the clients’ financial and immigration status for successful participation in the EB-5 Program.
Advised a regional center in New York on structuring investments in Eb-5 program through Bitcoin, including implementation of effective KYC/AML program for onboarding foreign investors.
Prepared expert opinions for several early cryptocurrency adopters applying for EB-5 green-cards in response to USCIS requests for additional evidence of the legal sources of digital funds (BTC/ETH).
Advised an investor and his family on pre-immigration planning in preparation for obtaining EB-5 visas.
Assisted a client and two of his family members in undergoing the application process and obtaining EB-5 green cards through investing into a Florida-based regional center.
Advised a Norwegian client on qualification for the EB-5 Investor Visa Program making the investment in cryptocurrency.
EB-5 Minimum Investment
Currently, the EB-5 Program allows for a minimum investment in the amount of $500,000. The funds should be traceable and originate from legitimate sources. While participating in the EB-5 Program involves a risk of a partial or complete loss of the investment, the EB-5 investments are subject to return within several years, depending on a project.
Participation in similar investor immigration programs in other countries often requires considerably larger investments and non-refundable contributions. For example, the minimum amount for an investment visa in the UK starts from $2.5 million and may reach $13 million. Malta investor immigration program mandates a minimum non-refundable contribution of €650,000 in addition to certain qualifying investments. Due to comparatively lower investment requirements, the number of foreign investors who became U.S. permanent residents through the EB-5 Program has increased in the recent years. Permanent resident status allows to apply for the U.S. citizenship in the future.
The U.S. Congress has been considering amendments to the EB-5 Program increasing the investment threshold to $800,000 – $1.35 million. Those investors who apply for EB-5 investor visas before such amendments are enacted may still benefit from more favorable conditions of becoming a U.S. resident.
EB-5 Investment Options
The EB-5 Program offers two main options where foreign investors can (1) start their own business in the U.S. making sure it is qualifying for certain eligibility criteria or (2) invest in a project supervised by one of the EB-5 Regional Centers designated by the USCIS. Since most of the applicants find it burdensome to operate a job-creating company in the U.S., the majority of investments are being made through the Regional Centers.
Attorneys at Dilendorf Law Firm assist clients in choosing and interacting with reputable Regional Centers having a good track record of completed investment projects.
EB-5 Investments with Cryptocurrencies
With the proliferation of cryptocurrencies, large holders of digital assets may also qualify for the EB-5 Program and use their cryptocurrencies, such as Bitcoin, to make the necessary investment and receive the U.S. permanent resident status.
The USCIS EB-5 Division Chief has suggested that transfers of cryptocurrencies, like Bitcoin, could potentially qualify under the EB-5 Program, so long as the general requirements are satisfied. At least one of the Regional Centers announced acceptance of Bitcoin to fund EB-5 investments. But in most cases, investors will need to convert their cryptocurrency into U.S. dollars upon transfer to the U.S., which should be done properly to qualify for the EB-5 Program.
We are consulting clients on participation in the EB-5 Investor Visa Program with the additional cryptocurrency component, including completing the required KYC/AML checks and retaining licensed intermediaries.
Comprehensive EB-5 Visa Assistance
Dilendorf Law Firm provides full legal support to high-net-worth foreign individuals at all stages of obtaining an EB-5 investor visa in the U.S., including:
- Consulting on the EB-5 Program eligibility criteria;
- Analyzing options and providing recommendations on the available investment projects and Regional Centers;
- Preparing documents for the EB-5 application and transfer of the investment;
- Submitting a petition with the USCIS and preparing clients to visa interviews;
- Petitioning to remove conditions on a client’s permanent resident status and, subsequently, to become a U.S. citizen;
- Consulting clients throughout the interaction with a regional center, including in relation to a return of the client’s investment (typically, after 5-6 years from the investment date).
- EB-5 Immigrant Investor Program | USCIS
- EB-5 Filings Tips
- USCIS EB-5 Resources
- Processing Times Information
- About the EB-5 Visa Classification
- USCIS Questions and Answers: EB-5 Economic Methodologies
- USCIS EB-5 Support Center
- Citizenship for Sale: Oversight of the EB-5 Investor Visa Program
- USCIS Proposes Rules Increasing Minimum Investment Thresholds for the EB-5 Immigrant Investor Program
- EB-5 Policy Manual