If you're exploring the US EB-5 Investor Visa program, you'll want to stick around for this. The big news came down on January 31, 2024: the US Citizenship and Immigration Department rolled out some updates. The headline? Application fees for Form I-526E are about to get a lot steeper, jumping from $3,675 all the way to $11,160. And this isn't in the distant future—we're talking just a few months away.
Thus, if you want to take advantage of the original application fees, you should consider investing now. By investing now, you can avoid the tripling of the fees as well as enjoy an earlier priority date.
Keep reading to get the lowdown on these fee changes, how they might hit potential EB-5 applicants, and a chance to get in on the EB-5 visa action with a partial investment of less than $800k.
What’s Happening with EB-5 Application Fees Exactly?
On January 31, 2024, the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) unveiled a proposal in the Federal Register aimed at adjusting the fee structure for Form I-526E.
Under this proposal, the fee for Form I-526E is slated to increase from $3,675 to $11,160, effective April 1, 2024. This substantial adjustment represents more than a threefold increase.
While USCIS previously sought to modify this fee in 2020, legal proceedings halted its implementation. This time it seems that these fees are likely to be implemented without further delays.
With this in mind, if you’re serious about investing in EB-5 Visa, this is your chance. You have a limited timeframe to capitalize on the current fee structure.
Furthermore, since the announcement of the new fees, a surge in EB-5 applications is expected. Therefore, if you submit your application earlier, you can secure a better position in the adjudication queue.
Partial Investment Option
Investors interested in the EB-5 Visa typically choose the full investment option, putting down $800k all at once. This investment goes into a Targeted Employment Area (TEA), which is either a rural region or an area with unemployment rates at least 150% higher than the national average.
However, there’s also a choice to invest partially. Before we dive into what this means, let’s quickly go over the EB-5 investment process.
EB-5 Investment Process
Before deciding whether to invest the full amount or choose a partial investment, it's important to familiarize yourself with the investment process in brief:
Step 1: Choose a project to invest in as part of the EB-5 program.
Step 2: Commit the necessary capital to the chosen project.
Step 3: Note the minimum investment requirement: $800,000 for projects within a Targeted Employment Area, either in rural or urban settings. For projects located outside of TEAs, the minimum investment increases to $1.05 million.
Step 4: Place the investment funds into an escrow account for protection before the money is officially allocated to the EB-5 project.
Related Read: How to Navigate the EB-5 Visa Process in 8 Easy Steps
EB-5 Partial Investment: How Does it Work?
If you do not have $800,000 of capital amount upfront, you can opt for a partial EB-5 Investment. Investing partially means putting in some of the needed money, usually about half, and agreeing to pay the rest by a certain time.
This investment option offers multiple benefits to the investor, including:
- Complies with EB-5 Investment Criteria.
- Early Priority Date: Secures an advantageous position in the queue, providing more time to gather the full investment.
- Flexibility in Asset Management: Enables the strategic liquidation of assets like stocks or real estate on favorable terms, avoiding losses or below-market sales.
- Timing Alignment with Asset Sales: Facilitates synchronization of investment with the receipt of funds from specific asset sales, such as post-blackout periods for restricted stock units.
However, investors should be ready to provide documentation proving that they will have access to the remaining funds. In the past, EB-5 petitions typically required evidence of the full investment upfront. However, USCIS has evolved to allow the submission of partial funds, provided that the investor clearly identifies the remaining balance and ensures it will be transferred to the EB-5 entity before USCIS completes its review.
What Partial Investment Options Are Available to Me?
There are several investment projects available for partial investment. At High Net Worth Immigration, we can facilitate access to the best projects on the market. Here are some of the projects that could be of interest to you:
- A Class “A” active adult multi-family community project, offering a 5% annual return.
- A project featuring 1,300 active adult single-family homes outside Atlanta, Georgia.
- A resort which includes 95 condos and a 107-room hotel.
- 125 Estate lots located near Park City, Utah.
- A multi-family community in Florida, with 210 units, offering both equity and loan options.
Don’t Miss This Opportunity
The EB-5 Investor Visa is one of the best ways to secure permanent residency in the United States. Act now if you want to benefit from the current application fees, which are set to increase on April 1, 2024.
At High Net Worth Immigration, we work with high-net-worth individuals and investors seeking to secure permanent residencies and second citizenships worldwide. If the United States has been on your radar for some time, now is the best time to act.
Contact our team today to start your EB-5 Investor Visa application process.