The EB-5 program was created to uplift the U.S. economy through the investment of money in businesses based in the U.S. by foreign nationals. Individuals are required to invest a minimum of $1,000,000 (or at least $500,000 in a Targeted Employment Area) and maintain at least 10 jobs for U.S. citizens, excluding the investor and his/her immediate family. Once approved, the investor will be granted 2 years’ conditional residence in the U.S.
It is quite difficult to obtain an EB-5 visa since a lot of requirements need to be met. So, investors who wish to obtain an EB–5 visa require proper guidance and assistance to ensure that the steps taken are accurate and the petition is approved. A good lawyer can provide you the guidance you need and make the job easier for you.
Choosing the right EB-5 attorney can be tricky. Here, we will discuss a few things that you should keep in mind while selecting a proficient EB-5 attorney.
First and foremost, you should consider, before hiring an EB-5 attorney, his/her credentials. Find out the specialization, background and legal training details of the lawyer. A good attorney will possess the proper credentials vis-à-vis the fact that s/he is capable of handling your case.
Apart from that, you would also need to find out the type of application the attorney usually files. Most of the EB-5 cases are Regional Center based ones. However, if your case pertains to the Direct EB-5 application, then this must be the first criteria that your attorney should fulfill. This is because Direct and Regional EB-5 cases require completely different skill-sets to be handled.
Before selecting an EB-5 attorney, it is important to find out how many similar cases the lawyer has handled in the past. A good amount of experience with handling EB-5 petitions ensures that the attorney has a thorough knowledge of the various details of the process. It is also an indication that the attorney is aware of the following:
- How to successfully prepare an EB-5 petition;
- The various issues that could arise regarding the EB-5 petition;
- Any update regarding the EB-5 application procedure;
- New rules implemented, if any; and
- Risks related to lending etc. that may affect your EB-5 case.
An appropriate amount of exposure to handling the financial laws involving EB-5 application is always beneficial to ensure that your petition is approved. Therefore, it is always wise to be aware of the number of EB-5 cases that the lawyer handles each month. Additionally, if loans are applicable in your case, you would also need to make sure that the lawyer has a thorough knowledge about the laws related to lending so that s/he can review the documents pertaining to the loan.
Even though the fee is a factor in choosing an EB-5 attorney, ensure that it does not get in the way of hiring a competent lawyer. However, while choosing an attorney, you should also find out about the scope of work that the price would cover. Apart from the basic services, the following are also typically handled by an EB-5 attorney:
- All necessary documentation, organization and filing procedures of the immigration forms;
- Reviewing of all documents pertaining to loans, partnership and subscription agreements and so on;
- Evaluation of the source of funds; and
- Analysis of the consistency of the Private Placement Memorandum with other related documents.
Ensure that the fee covers the entire scope of work and that you do not have to pay additional and unaccounted-for charges at a later date.
Time S/he Takes to Know Your Business
For EB-5 direct filing cases, the amount of time the lawyer spends to understand your business and its scope is one of the major factors that determine the competency of the lawyer. Such attempts always reveal information that can prove to be extremely valuable for a case.
- A comprehensive knowledge of your business plan will help the lawyer to explain how it satisfies the legal necessities for I-526 and I-829 approval, to the U.S. government; and
- It will also help in providing sufficient knowledge and the essential proofs regarding job creation.
Apart from these, you can also read reviews and ask your trusted ones for recommendations to locate a skilled lawyer. These considerations will help you find the right EB-5 immigration lawyer in Miami.