In November, new federal regulations went into effect that made it harder to obtain an EB-5 investor visa. Now, steps are being taken in various places to attempt to roll back these new regulations. The new regulations are being challenged in the federal courts. Members of Congress are also considering a new bill to ease its effects. What you should take away from all this is that EB-5 remains a viable option for obtaining a visa but that the rules are potentially changing. To make sure you are best positioned to respond to these changes and get the visa you seek, be sure you have a knowledgeable Florida immigration attorney representing you.
The new rules went into effect with an ostensible goal of curbing fraud and other misuse of the EB-5 visa program. The changes meant that the minimum amount that a foreign citizen was required to invest in order to qualify for an EB-5 visa went up to $900,000 (from $500,000) in targeted employment areas, and up to $1.8 million (from $1 million) in all other areas. The regulations shifted the responsibility for designating targeted employment areas from the states to the federal government.
The new regulations also shrank the number of areas that qualified as targeted employment areas. This change has the potential to have a massive impact on development in parts of Palm Beach and Miami-Dade Counties, which would stand to lose targeted employment areas in several key areas.