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As with the temporary business-based immigration matters, the green card business immigration has several different categories, which includes the EB5 program. Some of these categories require you to have an employer sponsor you; while, some allow you to petition on your own behalf. The following is a brief description of the various employment based green card petitions.
If you are at the top of your field, regardless of whether or not you are a scientist, artist, athlete, businessman or entertainer, you may be eligible to obtain your green card as an alien of extraordinary ability. You do not need a sponsor for this green card petition. You do need to show that you will work in the US for the foreseeable future in your area of expertise.
To prove that you are an alien of extraordinary ability you should be prepared to provide the following documentation:
There are other categories of evidence that can be provided to prove that you are an alien of extraordinary ability. We can work with you to gather the proper evidence and file an approvable petition on your behalf. Should you feel that you qualify for this immigrant visa.
Similar to an L1 visa, you can obtain a green card if you can classify as an intracompany transferee. You must show that you have worked in a foreign company that owns or controls at least 50% of a US company. This ownership and control can be direct, wherein the foreign company owns at least 50% of the US company (or the US company owns at least 50% of the foreign company) or through indirect means, wherein you show that the owners of the foreign company own and control a majority (more than 50%) share of the US company. You must also show that you worked in an executive or managerial position for the foreign company for at least one year within the last three years that you entered the US to work for the US company, in any visa category. You do not have to have an L1 visa to seek the intracompany transferee green card petition. Finally, you must show that you will work in an executive or managerial position for the US company for the foreseeable future. The US business must have been in operation for at least a year and should meet certain financial and employment standards. If you are interested in learning more about this green card process.
There are some immigration matters that require the Department of Labor’s assistance before filing a request with immigration. For example, you must file certain forms with the Department of Labor before filing certain H visas. The most prevalent relationship between the Department of Labor and immigration is the PERM process, which leads to permanent residency in the US.
The PERM process is a way for the Department of Labor and immigration to feel comfortable providing a foreign national with a green card, after a position offered to a foreign national has first been offered to US citizens. The PERM process requires advertising a vacant position to the American public before the company can sponsor the foreign national for a green card.
The first step of the process is to work with your potential employer to describe the position that you will be filling in the future, as well as the minimum requirements needed to fill this position. A request is then sent to the Department of Labor who will determine the prevailing wage for this vacant position. Once the prevailing wage has been determined, the company must then advertise the position, in house and to the general public, and interview anyone who meets the requirements for an entry level position. Should no qualified persons exist, the company is able to submit a PERM request to the Department of Labor who can certify the request.
After the request has been certified, the company may now file a green card petition with immigration, seeking to permanently employ you. Depending on various factors will determine when you and your family can seek permanent residency in the United States.
Should you be interested in learning more about the PERM process.
If you are working for a religious organization and have been a member of that denomination for at least two years, you may be eligible to apply for permanent residency. You will need your church to apply for you to work in a religious occupation, which you must have held for at least the two years immediately before filing your green card petition. This cannot be a voluntary position. It must have been a paid full time position for the previous two years. If you believe that you may qualify for a religious based green card petition.
The EB5 visa is an investment visa that allows a foreign national and his/her family obtain permanent residency in the United States. The visa requires at least a $900,000 investment, in the best case scenario, with many projects requiring a $1.8 million investment. The downgraded investment is allowed when a foreign national invests in a rural area or a high unemployment area, which has an unemployment rate that is 1.5 times the national average. The investor must show that the investment has come from a lawful source and must be able to track the funds from the investor’s account into the business.
Aside from the monetary investment, the investment generally must create 10 new jobs. When investing in your own business, you must show ten direct jobs, meaning the company must create 10 full time jobs, filled by American workers. You must present a competent business plan that details how the jobs will be created and when they will be created.
You can also invest in a regional center project, which is a project developed and controlled by an immigration approved business. In this scenario, you do not have to create 10 direct jobs. You will have to show that 10 jobs, which includes a combination of direct, indirect and induced jobs, have been created by your investment. The direct, indirect and induced jobs should be discussed through mathematical formulas prepared by an economist or other expert.
The EB5 visa is a three step process. The first step is to prepare and submit the paperwork showing that you have made the investment, that the funds for the investment came from lawful sources, and that your investment will create 10 jobs. Once this step is approved, you and your family are able to file and seek temporary residence in the US, and you will be given a two year residency card. Prior to your residency expiring, you must file the third request which shows that you have maintained the investment and that 10 jobs were created because of your investment.
If you are considering the EB5 investment, we will be happy to speak with you regarding your options, and possibly present you with several regional center projects.
Two Canadian colleagues of mine referred me to Mr. Tyrrell. I contacted him and told him my idea to move to the United States. Mr. Tyrrell listened to me, gave me immigration advice and then worked with me to help plan an investor visa strategy.
After submitting my paperwork to immigration, I was struggling with my business and immigration plan. I reached out to Mr. Tyrrell who listened to what was going in my business. Although I only saw problems, Mr. Tyrrell saw hope. He provided me with an optimistic outlook on the business and gave me advice that helped me look at the situation differently. I followed his advice and am beginning to see the fruits of my labor. His willingness to listen to me and provide solutions is what I value the most about Mr. Tyrrell. His opportunistic outlook provided me with the hope I needed in a difficult time.
I am so grateful for Mr. Tyrrell’s help. He is an extraordinary immigration attorney and an even better friend.