EB-5 Regional Centers Program
A Regional Center is a private enterprise, corporation or a regional governmental agency with a targeted investment program within a defined geographic region. The EB-5 Regional Center Investment Program allocates at least 3,000 conditional green cards each year for people who invest in designated Regional Centers. Participation in the EB-5 Regional Center Program requires aqualifying investment of $1,000,000 by a pre-qualified foreign investor. The qualifying investment amount may be reduced to $500,000 for projects located in Targeted Employment Areas.
The EB-5 policy management requirement is minimal. Thus, for those who are not interested in day-to-day management or running an active business, Regional Center programs can be an attractive alternative to direct EB-5 requirements.
The EB-5 visa quota for investors has remained at 10.000 since the program was instated in 1990. Until recently, this number has more than satisfied the demand, which never exceeded 50%. 2012 marked a record year for I-526 petitions, as the USCIS received 6.041 and processed 4.634 (by the end of FY2012. 9/30/2012)
The investor is not required to live in the place of investment; rather, he or she can live wherever he/she wishes in the United States. Furthermore, the Regional Center Program permits a less restrictive indirect employment creation, which allows each investor to obtain a permanent green card by proving a combination of 10 direct and/or indirect employees per investor.