Dreaming of becoming a US resident, but no family members to petition you? Do you want to invest your hard-earned savings in a business in the US, but don’t know how? Do you want to send your children to Ivy League schools, but can’t find a faster way to do it? These concerns are what US Green Capital, Regional Center aims to address as they reach out to Filipinos, to help them achieve US residency thru the EB-5 Visa Program. In an interview with Cebu Daily News, Ms. Yvet Andalis-Halili, US Green Capital’s Director for International Marketing and EB-5 practitioner, answers important questions to help interested investors understand and appreciate this amazing opportunity.
WHAT IS AN EB-5 VISA?
EB-5 means Employment-based Immigration: Fifth Preference category visa. It is the fastest, easiest way to get a US green card and eventually a US citizenship, even without a petition from a family member. EB-5 visa starts with a 2-year temporary resident visa with the filing of I-526, followed by the filing of an I-829 to remove the conditions 3 months before the 2nd year anniversary. Upon approval of the I-829 and the removal of the conditions, the permanent resident visa will be received. After 5 years of residency, the investor will be eligible to apply for US citizenship.
WHAT IS THE EB-5 INVESTOR PROGRAM?
Created in 1990 by US Congress, the program’s objective is to stimulate the US economy through job creation and capital investment by foreign investors. Under this program, foreign-national entrepreneurs and their immediate families are eligible to become permanent residents of the US if they make the necessary investment in a commercial enterprise in the US and create and preserve 10 permanent full-time jobs for qualified US workers.
WHAT IS A REGIONAL CENTER?
A regional center, like US Green Capital, serves as a government-approved entity developers affiliate with in order to raise EB-5 capital for a duly approved project. The regional center is like a license since the regional center designation allows projects to access EB-5 capital with specific job creation advantages.
WHO IS US GREEN CAPITAL AND WHAT DOES IT AIM TO ACHIEVE?
US Green Capital is a Regional Center whose mission is to prudently invest capital on behalf of international clients to ensure proactive delivery of attractive, risk-adjusted returns and seamless acquisition of the EB-5 visa. Our team prides itself of 99% approval of I-526 and I-829 residents visa, in partnership with EB-5 Affiliate Network State of California (ID 1403151667) and State of Florida (ID 1403151665), where no EB-5 project has been disapproved by the government.
WHO ARE THE PEOPLE BEHIND US GREEN CAPITAL?
The team behind US Green Capital is a consortium of industry professionals, led by ROBERT LAUGHLIN. Mr. Laughlin is the co-founder and managing partner of US Green Capital, whose professional career includes a business development role at a prominent commercial telecommunications firm in Washington, DC.He also joined Morgan Stanley where he managed the wealth of high net-worth individuals and where he incorporated global macro-portfolio management strategies to achieve balanced portfolios, with an emphasis on risk mitigation. He was part of a team that managed over $500 million in assets. Mr. Laughlin now leverages his prudent investment strategies, risk management solutions, and management acumen to serve EB-5 investors all around the world through the development of commercial real estate projects. GEORGE GANEY is a partner at Ganey Law Group who has significant experience in successfully securing approval for a high-volume of I-526 petitions on behalf of immigrant investors from China, Mexico, and India, as well as successfully obtaining unconditional permanent residency for immigrant investors and family members. BART DE BRUJIN is a seasoned commercial real estate development and business expert with over 20 years of experience.
WHAT IS THE ROLE OF US GREEN CAPITAL IN THE EB-5 PROGRAM?
US Green Capital is the conduit between the investor, immigration, and the investment. EB-5 professionals at US Green Capital are highly familiar with the EB-5 process. We will be responsible for making sure that the project you are investing in is in compliance with all laws. We will also be preparing the necessary documentation and paperwork required in the processing of the visa applications. We make sure that we are there with the investor in every step of the way.
WHAT DOES THE PROCESS INVOLVE?
First, we pre-qualify the investor. We ask the applicant to fill up a Questionnaire and submit documents on Source of Funds. We send the forms to our legal team for a quick assessment of qualification. As soon as approved, investors sign subscription documents and an escrow agreement with the bank, prior to deposit of visa fees. As soon as all required documents are signed and submitted and money is deposited under escrow, legal files I-526 for the 2-year temporary resident visa of the investor. Three (3) months before the 2nd year anniversary of the temporary resident visa, the I-829 for Permanent Resident Visa will be filed with immigration. After 5 years of US residency, the investor can file his US citizenship.
WHY IS THERE A NEED FOR AN ESCROW AGREEMENT?
The escrow agreement protects the money and the interest of the investor. We pride ourselves in releasing the investors capital only when their I-526 is approved. Everyone else either does not use an escrow account or they release a percentage of the fund (sometimes all), even before the approval of the temporary resident visa. Our structure is the safest in the industry.
HOW DO I QUALIFY FOR THE EB-5 VISA?
Most importantly, you have to prove that your investment funds were obtained lawfully. After you have been pre-qualified and approved, you have to make an “at-risk” investment in a government-approved project, of at least $500,000 or $1Mn depending on the project’s location. The project should be able to create 10 jobs for US workers for over a 2-year period and you should be in some form of management position in the project that you have chosen. US Green Capital’s projects will provide for the requirements of job creation and the management position.
HOW MUCH IS CAPITAL INVESTMENT AND WILL IT BE RETURNED TO INVESTOR?
The visa fee will serve as the investment in a government-approved project. The required amount depends on where the project is located. For projects located in Targeted Employment Area (TEA), an investment of $500,000 is required. For non-TEA, the required amount is $1Mn. A TEA is either a rural area, an area with high unemployment rate or a place where economic boost is needed. By December 2017, the $500,000 will most likely be increased to $800,000. All the more reason why interested investors should sign up now to make it before the looming increase in fees. The $500,000 investment will be returned to the investor upon exit strategy, usually within 5 years. This is a guaranteed return.
WHAT OTHER FEES ARE REQUIRED?
Admin fees of $50,000 and legal fees of $20,000.
HOW MANY CAN MIGRATE WITH THE $500,000 INVESTMENT?
All immediate family members—spouses and children under 21 years of age, can become green card holders with one investment of $500,000.
WILL THE INVESTOR BE ALLOWED TO LEAVE THE US EVERY NOW AND THEN WITHIN THE 2-YEAR PERIOD?
Yes, as long as he does not stay out of the US for 6 months or more. Among other conditions, he should have a residency of at least 18 months to be given a permanent residency.
FOR THOSE WHO CAN QUALIFY, BUT CANNOT LEAVE THEIR BUSINESSES IN THE PHILS, CAN THEY PASS ON THE VISA TO A FAMILY MEMBER?
Yes, this is what you call a GIFTING CAPITAL. You can gift it to a brother or a sister, even to non-immediate family members. Our legal team will pre-qualify the giver on source of funds, while the immigration application will be in the name of the recipient.
WHY SHOULD THEY INVEST IN THE EB-5 VISA, IF THEY ARE EARNING WELL IN THE PHILS?
For various reasons. Aside from being able to get a US Green card, the program can broaden investment opportunities since you can also do business in the US. You can expand or diversify. Also, you can send your children to top-notch schools. The best thing is, you can do all these with all your immediate family members with you.
WHAT PROJECTS ARE AVAILABLE TO INVEST IN?
US Green Capital provides 2 government approved projects, but with limited slots. One is a mixed-use real estate project with 88-room select service hotel and a detached restaurant on the side. This project will be handled by IHG’s Holiday Express, located in Palm Desert, California. The other project is located in Cocoa, Florida, which is a 248-unit luxury apartment complex in a world-class location where amazing developments and activities are currently happening.
IS THERE A GUARANTEED RETURN ON INVESTMENT ON THESE PROJECTS?
In the EB-5 program, all investments are required to be “at risk”, just like any other investment, so guarantees and promises on ROI should be approached with caution. Due diligence is key. Our main goal is to help the investors get a permanency resident visa in the US. Any ROI should be considered as gravy.
HOW CAN INTERESTED INVESTORS CONTACT YOU?
They may contact me (Yvet Andalis-Halili) at 0917-850-8995 or email me at [email protected] or at [email protected] Call now and grab this rare opportunity. US Green Capital will be there for you and your family as you go through this life-changing process.