SELECTING AN ATTORNEY FOR EB5 PARTICIPATION

Selecting the best attorney for participating in the EB-5 investor program for Indians is of the utmost importance. There are dual concerns of protecting the investment along with the path to a green card and U.S. Citizenship.

There are still a percentage of denied applications each year, despite the growth of the visa or investor visa program. At the same time, the growth of the Regional Center allows for more available investor projects with more choices.

An immigration attorney is not necessarily an investment advisor. His or her responsibilities do not include research specific to the visa or investor visa program Business Plan. Conversely, he or she may scrutinize the entire proposed project and help with the due diligence.

In recent years, some immigration attorneys have registered with the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority. Doing so enables them to take various exams to possibly qualify as a financial broker or investment adviser.

Consequently, the knowledge, experience, and scope of an immigration attorney as it applies to the applicant’s potential project could be important within the immigration attorney selection process.

The visa or investor visa program applicant should consider the background of their potential immigration attorney. Having additional knowledge of the business field of interest could enhance the due diligence process. On the other hand, an applicant may not wish to be able to be swayed into making specific industry decisions.

Accordingly, most (if not all) immigration attorneys expect a client to have completed their due diligence at the outset.

HELPING WITH THE EB-5 APPROVAL PROCESS

Another responsibility of the immigration attorney is getting the client’s (applicant) I-526 approved. Next is doing everything possible for I-829 approval.

Perhaps the most important element of an immigration attorney’s performance is protecting the applicant’s investment. Even with the most positive results from the operation of the investment, specifics need to be in place for how the applicant’s investment will be returned.

Details, such as when and how much, fall within the responsibility of the attorney to spell out.

Visa or investor visa program participants should prepare to lose at least some of their investment. They may need to wait beyond the planned repayment period. Accordingly, the investor and their attorney should be prepared to deal with such circumstances.

Moreover, USCIS requires validation that a capital investment shows as “at risk”. No guarantees can be made by the project to an investor. Proof of the invested capital being utilized for “business activity” is required.

The role of the immigration attorney includes doing as much as possible to ensure these requirements. At the same time, the investment Business Plan should be as thorough as possible.

This is not legal or financial advice, and applicants are not required to retain an immigration attorney.