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US immigration ups the ante on golden visas

People in British Columbia who are saving to get funds together to obtain a golden visa might have to reconsider their plans. Since 1993, U.S. immigration required an investment of $500,000 for an EB-5 visa. This would then grant the person a conditional green card that is valid for two years. A new rule, which will take effect on Nov. 1, 2019, was recently published to show the new minimum investment will increase to $900,000.

The investment of $900,000 will only help investors from British Columbia or other foreign countries to obtain an EB-5 visa if they invest it in rural areas with high unemployment levels. U.S. authorities say the new rules will eliminate the prevalence of gerrymandering and fraudulent investments. It came to light that fraudsters used investors’ funds for luxurious purchasers instead of investing it as required.

Required investments made in projects other than those in high-unemployment and economically challenged areas will also increase from the current $1 million to $1.8 million. According to the United States Citizenship and Immigration Services, these adjustments will also cover inflation. Authorities announced that the investment requirements would be revised at five-year intervals in the future.

With about three months before the increased investment requirements take effect, application of British Columbia investors for EB-5 visas with the $500,000 minimum investment will still be accepted. They can simplify the process by seeking the support and guidance of an experienced U.S. immigration lawyer. Legal counsel with offices in Vancouver and Seattle can be an invaluable asset when dealing with immigration issues.