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Differences between EB-5 and E-2 investor visas to live in the U.S.

To immigrate to the United States based on an investment, there are two paths. On the one hand, the E-2 investor visa and on the other the EB-5 Immigrant Investor Program. Both paths allow foreign citizens to enter and remain in the U.S. We show you their main differences.

One thing that the E-2 US investor visa and the EB-5 investor visa have in common is that the federal government offers foreign citizens the opportunity to legally immigrate and work in the United States.

However, they are completely different in terms of their individual requirements and the more specific structure on which applicants and their families must act.

The EB-5 immigrant investor visa program will allow any foreign national the opportunity to acquire a US green card in exchange for investing $1,000,000 or $800,000 in a new business venture.

The E-2 investor visa, meanwhile, allows a citizen of a partner country to be admitted to the country when a substantial amount of capital is invested in a US company. But let’s take an in-depth look at the main features of each path.

Essential Features EB-5 Program

The EB-5 Immigrant Investor Program offers any foreign citizen the opportunity to acquire a Green Card in the US in exchange for investing between US$800,000 and US$1,000,000 in a new business enterprise (NCE) or restructuring business within the country.

That is, the investment requirement must be at least US $800,000, an amount that can be reduced if it is invested in specific employment areas (TEA) or that the government determines with a certain reduced level of income or with a lack of economic investment.

Basically, the requirements of an EB-5 visa are that a citizen invest the aforementioned amounts in a company that qualifies in the country and that is structured under the program, also demonstrating that the source of this EB-5 capital is legitimate. In addition, you must confirm with documentation that as a direct result of your investments, at least 10 jobs of 35 hours per week will be created for US citizens or authorized workers for a period of at least two years.

The biggest challenges in obtaining an EB-5 visa are that the US government authorizes only 10,000 each year. An EB-5 investor will also need to pay their immigration attorney’s legal fees, government filing fees, translation fees, and the general application process. Being accepted is usually a slow but sure process.

Obtaining a Green Card with the EB-5 Program

The EB-5 visa program offers a multitude of advantages. Among its main benefits is obtaining a Green Card, which allows members of your immediate family to be admissible to the United States. That is, like the investor, their children and their spouse will be able to work or attend school and take advantage of the discounted tuition rates of the state and the country’s infrastructure.

In principle, being accepted for the EB-5 visa means that the investor and their family will immediately become conditional permanent residents of the US and will be eligible for US citizenship within 5 years if all obligations are met. It is also not necessary for an EB-5 investor to be responsible for the management of the business in which they are investing or even to speak English, and EB-5 investors can travel in and out of the US at their convenience.

Essential Characteristics E-2 Investor Visa

The E-2 investor visa, also known as a “nonimmigrant visa” allows a citizen of a country with which the US maintains a treaty of commerce and navigation, to be admitted to the country when a substantial amount is invested of capital in a US company.

The word “substantial” is not really defined, as E-2 investors have been seen getting visas approved with as little as $75,000 or even millions of dollars. There is no required amount. Certain employees and immediate family of such person or of a qualifying organization may also be eligible for this classification.

The investment company may not be “marginal,” or may not have the present or future ability to produce more than enough income to provide a minimum living for the E-2 investor and his or her family.

Depending on the circumstances, a new business might not be considered marginal even if it lacks the current ability to generate such revenue. In these cases, however, the business must have the ability to produce such income within five years from the date the E-2 investment begins.

If the primary employer is not an individual, it must be a business that is at least 50% owned by persons in the US who are nationals of the treaty country. These owners must:

  • Maintain E-2 nonimmigrant investor status or
  • If the owners are not in the US, they must be classified as E-2 nonimmigrant investors


E-2 investor visa duration times

Among the main limitations of the E-2 visa is its extension. Investors and E-2 employees may remain in the country for a maximum of two years. Extensions for tenure can be requested every 2 years and could be approved for up to 5 years. All E-2 investors must maintain the intent to leave the US when their status expires.

An E-2 investor traveling abroad can generally be approved, if determined admissible by US Customs and Border Patrol (CBP), with an automatic two-year readmission period upon return to the United States.

Investing in BAI Capital is investing in the United States

With a presence in the real estate sector in the states of Florida, Texas and New York, BAI Capital specializes in generating value from land acquisition to the development of mixed-use projects. Such as residences for the elderly, student residences, multifamily buildings for rentals and mixed use that include condos and retail.

Our mission is to safeguard the capital of the partners and the own capital under the minimum risk exposure. With a safe development and going through all the stages. Purchase of land, adjustment of urban zoning, commercial vision in architectural development and management of building permits. Then, we take charge of the capitalization, construction and exit with return of the capital and profits to the partners.

In this way, we guarantee fixed and stable returns for our client portfolio. In addition to having a confidential work protocol with encrypted web forms. Use of protected personal data and private meetings with our agents throughout Latin America.

You already knew the differences between the EB-5 and E-2 investor visas to live in the U.S. If you are looking to protect your capital from inflation through investments with returns in USD, or invest in projects that qualify for the EB-5 investor visa to get a Green Card, complete our form and an agent will contact you.

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