Tuesday, August 30, 2011

New Opportunities for Enterprenuers

On Aug. 2, 2011,  USCIS outlined a series of policy, operational, and outreach efforts to fuel the nation’s economy and stimulate investment.  These initiatives will allow our nation to realize the potential of current immigration laws to attract the best and brightest from around the world to invest their talents, skills, and ideas to grow the U.S. economy and create American jobs.

Availability of EB-2 National Interest Waivers to Entrepreneurs
Entrepreneurs may obtain an employment-based second preference (EB-2) immigrant visa if they satisfy the existing requirements, and also may qualify for a National Interest Waiver under the EB-2 immigrant visa category if they can demonstrate that their business endeavors will be in the interest of the United States.

Availability of H-1B Visas to Entrepreneurs
Entrepreneurs with an ownership stake in their own companies, including sole employees, may be able to establish the necessary employer-employee relationship to obtain an H1-B visa, if they can demonstrate that the company has the independent right to control their employment.

Monday, August 29, 2011

Smart Investment Ideas

Although this firm is Business Immigration firm advising on business investment based immigration strategy, we have helped so many investors to effectively move to US, We hereby offer tips on investment project.

First of all, it’d be wise to conduct investment calculation for each business immigration options. We only company three major types: EB5, L1, H1 and E2.

Type of Immigration  Actual Investment    Schooling Expense   Living Expense    Traveling Expense    EB5                              550,000                        $24000                      $50,000             minimum    no
L1                            depends, could be less      $24000                      $50,000             minimum    no
H1B                           same as above                $24000                       $50,000             minimum    no
F1B                                0                                $200,000                     $50,000              $50,000   

Note 1: If project is well chosen, the investment value will be preserved; especially on L1 and H1 B, investment can be returned; Thus the actual investment should be treated as cost;

Schooling expense is roughly based on public school and college fee. For EB5, L1 and H1B, high school tuition is set to be zero because immigrant’s children are eligible to go to public school. College expense is set as average annual tuition for public college.

Bad influence refers to immigrants’ child under certain age would buy luxury cars, spend furiously and not to study hard. Even worse, to expose to drugs.

Business immigration ---Investing in Commercial Real Estate

Unknown to most foreign investors, investing in Commercial Real Estate is the safest transaction conducts among all other business adventure. The reasons are as follows: 1) Commercial Real Estate Transactions, as all real estate transactions,  are all recorded with the state and are published on the Internet; 2) All procedures are standarized including realtor fees, closing fees and thus are all transparent; 3) The third party management company can be hired to manage all the matters for a set fee.

All in all, every bit of transaction is made public online therefore investing in commercial real estate is very safe.

What is business immigration? When to consider business immigration?

Business Immigration is not a legal term. Business immigration is referred to as opposition of family based immigration. In short, any work-based immigration, rather than marriage based immigration, is attributed to business immigration. 
When a person wants to immigrate, the first thing he thinks about is whether he has a family member who is permanent resident or US citizen. Usually the first in line who can petition for him is spouse, then immediate family members, including parent and child. If nobody can help, the option to consider is business immigration. 
If you come from one of treaty countries with US, E1/E2 visa are possible; 
If you are researcher or professor, you may consider NIW (National Interest Waiver); 
If you will be hired by a company, or even hired by yourself, you may consider H Visa; 
If you can find a project to do in US, including joint venture, you may consider L1 Visa; 
If you want to be idle investor, then take a look at EB5 visa; 
For details about eligibility, please refer to related posts. Comments are welcome!

How do L1 visa holder obtain green card?

You may be eligible for an employment-based, first-preference visa if you have an extraordinary ability, are an outstanding professor or researcher, or are a multinational executive or manager. Multinational executive or manager may obtain EB1 visa if 
You have been employed outside the United States in the 3 years preceding the petition for at least 1 year by a firm or corporation and you are seeking to enter the United States to continue service to that firm or organization. Your employment have been outside the United States in a managerial or executive capacity and with the same employer, an affiliate, or a subsidiary of the employer.
Your petitioning employer is a U.S. employer. Your employer have been doing business for at least 1 year, as an affiliate, a subsidiary, or as the same corporation or other legal entity that employed you abroad.
EB1 visa shares the same criteria as L1 visa. Therefore, as long as a person is eligible for L visa, obtaining green card is matter of time. In other word, L1 visa holder is qualified for EB1 green card. 

Do I need to make money on my underlying project in order to extend L1 and obtain green card?

INA clearly lays out the eligibility requirements for L1. For instance, there is detailed description of requirement as to qualifying relationship between petitioning company and foreign company in question, there is definite description as to manager, special knowledge and executive. However, there is no regulation as to the size of investment and profitability, which entails that there is no need to profit for L extension and EB1 (green card). As long as the business is viable and the person is performing the functionality as promised, L extension will be granted, so as the green card, the latter shares almost the same standard as L 1 visa. 

律师专业意见: 送小孩到美国读书的三种方式的比较(留学、EB5, L1 和 H1)

总结本律师事务所接受到的咨询和客人的情况,我们得出的结论是, 几乎所有的投资移民的最终目的是送小孩到美国读书。 其中,一方家长因为在国内还有生意,不能长期待在美国。 虽然对投资回报率没有不现实的期望, 但至少希望资金保险。 
针对这种情况,我们常常建议三种方式供家长考虑: 1) 小孩子寄读留学, 大人在家里; 2) 投资 50万; 3) 单独投资或者与当地伙伴联合经营。 以下是三种方式的利弊的比较。 
1) 小孩子寄读: 
坏处是: 1) 家长不能常来; 每次来要办签证, 不批的可能性不是没有; 
                2) 学费非常昂贵; 许多学校的国际学生的学费是本地学生的若干倍; 
                3) 小孩子可能会盲目消费。 有许多国际学生在美国买名车, 买名牌, 不认真学习, 不把父母的血汗钱当回事; 
                4) 小孩子毕业后可能没有能力找到工作,就只能回国。 绿卡无望。 现在美国经济低迷,失业率非常高,愿意找外国学生的公司少而又少。 如果小孩子有绿卡,找到工作的机会才有; 
2) 投资 EB5; 
好处: 1) 如果找到了好项目,不用操心管理; 
            2) 家长只要每年在美国住上一阵子就可以保住绿卡;
            3) 小孩子可以得到绿卡;  
坏处: 1) 如果项目不够好, 拿到永久绿卡的可能性也减小了; 
            2) 投资有风险,投资回报没有保障; 
            3) 许多项目没有退股的选择; 
3) L 签证
好处: 1) 不用投资 500,000. 投你选择的项目要求的资金额; 
            2) 资金在投资者自己的掌控中; 
            3) 投资的项目不一定要立即盈利才能拿绿卡; 
            5) 全家得到绿卡; 
            6) 家长可以随进随出; 
坏处: 1) 自己要参与管理。 
4) H1 B
好处和坏处同 L 签证, 除了: 
1) 不能随时进出; 
2) 申请绿卡要申请劳工卡,而且有名额限制; 

L1 签证持有者在美的公司要投多少钱?赚多少钱才能办绿卡呢?

回答是不。 在美国成立公司和在中国成立公司有天壤之别。 在中国, 有注册资金一说。 注册资金一定要到为。 在美国就不用。 美国是注册制。 只要在上交一定的表格, 就可以了。 其他的基本文件,比如公司章程,公司股票分配。。。等等,可以请律师做。 所以,在美国成立公司不麻烦, 一般几百美金就够了。 

L1签证的好处实在是太多。 但很多人还是不敢,因为他们担心他们在美国不会经营,而且不会赚钱。 当然, 这种担心也不无道理, 毕竟美国是个陌生的国度, 语言不通,习惯也不同。 当然,如果找到了合适的合作伙伴,这个担心也可以除掉。 剩下的问题是新成立的公司是不是一定要赚钱?
美国移民法对L签证有很严格明确的规定。但这些规定中没有对投资额和利润的规定。  所以,只要是实实在在的公司,有可增长性的公司,公司经理就可以得到 L 签证,续签和得到绿卡。 当然美国移民法对经理的工作性质有非常细致的规定。 如果需要专业的帮助,请和我们律师事务所联系。 

买房办绿卡 II

中国房地产市场无可抵赖地是处于泡沫阶段。现在入市无疑是值得揣摩的。 而众所周知,美国的房地产是灾难性地低迷,很多地方的房产比同等的中国房产要便宜很多。 加之,几乎所有的人都想把孩子送出来读书,如果买房带绿卡就是好上加好的方式。 许多广告也说到这个梦想。 是这样吗?律师专业意见是: 这种说法是不准确的, 但买房办绿卡也是可能的。 为什么这么说?以下是我们的解释: 
在说的买房办绿卡的时候,人们常常想的是买房子给小孩子的妈妈和小孩住。 这样是不行的。 要办绿卡, 买的房是商业房,比如商铺。 几个人可以成立公司,投资商铺,请专业公司管理,收租金, 这样就可以办绿卡。 怎样能做到,请参看 L1 签证方式。 

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Visa Expiration Date and Duration of Stay

Many individuals have difficulty understanding the difference between the visa expiration date and the length of time you have permission to remain in the United States (U.S.). These are very different terms.

A U.S. visa indicates that your application has been reviewed by a consular officer at an American embassy or consulate, and that the officer determined you’re eligible to travel to a U.S. port-of-entry for a specific purpose.  a U.S. immigration officer of the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) decides whether to allow you to enter and how long you can stay for any particular visit.

The visa expiration date reflects the length of time you are permitted to travel to a port-of-entry in the U.S.
Duration of stay
Upon arriving at a port-of-entry and  when admitted, a CBP officer places a small white card, Arrival-Departure Record, Form I-94 or a small green card, Form I-94W for VWP travelers, in your passport.  This card shows permission to be in the U.S.

Should you need legal advice, you are welcomed to contact us by clicking on our profile.

Which one should I pursue? L-1 or H-1B

Foreign employers have long enjoyed the benefit of L1 Visa which provides them opportunity to transfer themselves as executive, manager or specialized knowledge personnel to their US firm, whereas H-1B has been the number one choice for professionals with a bachelor degree.
Now that many employers do have bachelor degrees and employers are now allowed to sponsor themselves, even as sole proprietary, H1B visa, it is imperative to compare these two for wiser choice.
While both visa are nonimmigrant business visas for individuals who have talents beyond those of the unskilled worker pool, there are massive difference between these two. Readers are advised to compare these two to find which one is better fit for the situation in question. 


Education and Degree Requirements

There is practically no education and degree requirement with L-1 visa, whereas 
the H1B beneficiary must be in a specialty occupation requiring a bachelor's degree or equivalent and its equivalent. The beneficiary must hold a bachelor’s degree or its equivalent.
Timeframes for L-1 and H-1

An L1A manager or executive may spend a total of 7 years on an L-1; an L1B specialized knowledge employee may spend a maximum of 5 years on an L-1; and an H1B beneficiary may spend up to 6 years on an H1B visa.
No Prevailing Wage Requirement

A key feature of L-1 petitions is that they do not have a prevailing wage requirement. Conversely, H1B petitions require that the position be offered at the prevailing wage or the actual wage at the employer's workplace; whichever is higher.
Spousal Work Permit Availability.
Another favorable L-1 factor is that L-2 dependent spouses may obtain Employment Authorization Documents (EADs) and work in the U.S., while H-4 dependents are prohibited from working. 

Government Related Certification 

Unique documentation that must be submitted for the H1B includes the Labor Condition Application (LCA) from the Department of Labor (DOL). While there is no DOL involvement in the L-1 petition.

Labor Certificate For Permanent Residence
H1B beneficiary must go through stage of Labor Certificate Authorization before Immigration visa can be applied for. This stage takes infinitely long time. During the wait, H1B holders must stay with the sponsoring employer no matter what happens unless they forfeit their application.Many H1B visa holders find it hard to make life decision, to the least not being able to have peace of mind during the whole process as H1B visa holders.

The summary: If a person is eligible for both L1 and H1B, L1 is by far the better immigration solution.

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

L1 常见问题与回答

Q: 我要多少投资才能办L1;
A: 这取决于你自己的项目。 你只需要証明你有足够的资金能力启动和运作你在美国的项目。

Q: 我要先打款吗?
A: 这是 L1最大的好处。 你不用事先打款。 你可以等到你拿到 L1签证后才真正打款。

Q: 办了L1后, 我一年要在美国住都久?
A: 这也是 L1的好处之一。 作为工作签证的持有者, 你可以随时进出美国。 根据你在你美国公司的职位, 你也可能不经常在美国。

Q: 办了 L1后多久我能申请绿卡?
A: 美国公司成立一年后, 你可以申请绿卡。

Q: 什么情况下我能延期 L1 签证?
A: 只要你按照上交的计划运行公司, 你就可以获得签证的延期。 公司是否盈利不是考核的因素。

Q: 申请绿卡后要多久才能拿到?
A: 根据移民局的工作进程有变化。 按现在的进度,绿卡需要2-3年。

Q: 我的绿卡申请会不会不被批准?
A: 只要你按照你上交的商务计划运作你的公司, 你的绿卡申请就很可能会被批准。

Q: 办了绿卡后,我的家人能来吗?
A: 是的。

EB5 常见问题解答

Q: 我的EB5的临时绿卡的申请会不会得不到批准?

A: 这取决于你的钱是否是合法获得, 还有你是否投资到区域中心。

如果你能証明你的资金是合法取得,而且不是借来的, 你就离批准近了一步。 如果你投资到区域中心, 你也不用証明你能在未来两年内创造10个工作,因为区域中心已经帮你向移民局做了该方面的保证。  如果你投资给自己的企业, 你必须証明你有能力在未来两年内创造10个就业机会。

Q: 我的EB5的永久绿卡的申请会不会得不到批准?

A: 这就要看投资项目在两年内能不能开工, 或者有没有创造10个就业机会了。 这点, 投资给区域中心或投资给自己的项目都是一样的。

Q: 我怎么知道区域中心会不会成活或赚钱?
A: 运用常识!

Q: 怎样才能拿回我的投资?

A: 投资是没有办法拿回来的。 不管项目管理者如何承诺,投资就是投资。 如果项目不能成活, 投资者必须风险共担。 解决方案就是接受贷款的方式。

Q: 我能要求看成功案例吗?

A: 虽然这个问题的提出是值得理解的。 但美国法律要求业主和律师严格保护股东的隐私。 如果有人提供了其他投资人的信息,他们这么做是犯法的。

L1 Frequently Asked Questions

Q: How much money do I have to invest to obtain L1 visa?

A: It depends on your planned projects. You are obligated to prove that you have the financial ability to sustain the operation of your US office.

Q: Do I need to wire money first?

A: No, you don't need to. This is actually an advantage of L1 visa.

Q: How long do I need to stay in US after I obtain my initial L1 visa?

A: This is another advantage of L1 visa. As work visa holder, you may travel in and out of US as you wish. Depending on what your position is, you may be eligible for green card without being US for a long time.

Q: How long after L1 may I apply for green card?
A: After US firm has been operating for one year.

Q: Under what circumstance may I extend L1 Visa?
A: As long as you operate the company as planned, you may be approved for extension. Whether the company is profitable is not a requirement.

Q: How long do I need to wait for my green card?
A: it depends on USCIS’s workload. Based on the processing time now, it takes 2- 3 years.

Q: Is my green card application going to be approved?
A:  As long as you operate your company as planned, you will be.

Q: May my family come?
A:  Yes. 

EB5 Frequently Asked Questions

Q: Will USCIS approve my application for conditioned green card?

A: It depends on whether your money is legally obtained, whether you invest in a regional center.

You must prove to USCIS that the investment money is obtained legally and is not borrowed. If you invest in a regional center, you don’t need to prove you will create 10 jobs within 2 years because Regional Center has made such promise to USCIS on your behalf.  If you invest in your own project, you must bear the burden to prove that within 2 years, you will create 10 direct jobs.

Q: Can the condition be removed at the end of the second year of my conditioned green card?

A:  It depends on whether the project in question will start or not, i.e, has the project actually created 10 jobs as planned. This requirement is the same to both investment with Regional Center and to investor’s own enterprise.

Q: How do I know whether a Regional Center is viable or will be profitable?
A: Use common sense!

Q: How do I redeem my investment?

A: Unlike loan, investment is not refundable. No matter what the project developers promise, investment is investment. If the business is not viable, investors are required to share the risk. The solution is to provide loan to the project.

Q: May I see successful cases?
A: No, you may not, although the request is reasonable. However, American law requires founders and lawyers to protect the privacy of the stakeholders. Nobody has the legal rights to disclose stock holder’s private information.

EB5 Risk Analysis And Suggested Solutions.

Considering EB5 program as a venue to permanent residence? Regional Centers sound like a safety-box to you? If your answers to these questions are both yeses. You need to read along.

First of all,  when you are counting how much you need to spend in order for your new life in US, you should not stop at $500,000. Why? because besides the investment you need to make to the project, you need to buy a new home and pay for college of your children. Of course, there will be living expense too to consider.

Secondly, let’s face it. Nowhere in the law stipulates that Investment with Regional Centers is not insured by US government. EB5 investment, like all other investment you have made, are risk-bond. Therefore, you have homework to do!

Investors have three avenues to green cards. 1) Invest in Regional Centers, obtain temporary green card, permanent green card two years later; 2) Invest in new enterprises of his own, obtain temporary green card, permanent green card two years later; 3) Invest in new office or joint venture in US, obtain L1 visa and then green cards. (We call EB1)

 The following is analysis of pros and risk.

1) Invest to Regional Center.
Advantage: the benefit in investing in Regional Center is that you don’t need to worry about creation of jobs. As we all know, EB5 investors are required to create 10 full time jobs through his investment. To become Regional Center, developer must promise USCIS and they are going to create 10 jobs directly or indirectly. Therefore, USCIS assumes that Regional Center will create 10 jobs when adjudicate investor visa petition.
RiskA, Unknown to a lot of people, Regional centers are all new enterprises. They are approved as Regional centers not because they have created 10 full time jobs or 10 indirect jobs, they rather have persuaded USCIS to give them 2 years for them to achieve the goal. In this sense, it is not that obtaining temporary green card is uncertain. It is obtaining the permanent green card. If the  Regional Center fails to fulfill their promise--create enough jobs, i.e, they have not gathered sufficient funds to start, or even worse, they dissolved, investors will not receive permanent green card.
Suggested solution: a) Investors must realize, USCIS does not guarantee the investment, and they have to make their own judgments about the projects in question. Or simply choose operating projects.

Risk B: There is no exit strategy.
EB5 program is designed for investors. Investors, like stock holders, are at risk! The courts will not support investors’ request to “exit” because the agreement is for investment, not for a loan!
Suggested Solution:
Choose Regional Center that ask for a loan from you, instead of investment.

2) Invest to your own project.
Many thought EB5 programs mean they invest to Regional Center. It is not true. EB5 start with laws that allow investors to create a new enterprises or expand a troubled business. The laws are still in effect.
Advantage: You are in control.
Risk: As other investment of yours, it is at risk.
Suggested Solution: Use your own judgment in selecting the right project.

3) Invest to yourself, creating a new company in US or a joint venture with current US firms. Investors will receive L1 visa and then will be able to obtain green card.
EB5 grant temporary green card and then permanent green card. L1 visa is first step for EB1 green card. EB5 requires at least $500,000 in investment; L1 requires as much as your planned enterprises need. Specifically, investors may create a business plan which stipulate the investment size of a new office. Investors must prove they are able to sustain the operation of the new office. Upon receiving of L1 visa, the investors will operate the project as planned. As long as they do so, without making a profit, the investors will be eligible to obtain EB1 immigration visa which in turn to apply for green card.
Advantage: 1) Investors don’t have to be here. Let’s face it, investors must take care of their businesses to sustain their new life and adventure in US. L1 visa offers them infinite entries in a year.
2) Children enjoy the same benefit as those of green card holders;
3)EB1 green card’s requirements are almost the same as that of L1 visa. Therefore, the investors’ ability to keep the promises to USCIS is the key to further success in green card application.
 4)If you create your own new office, you don’t even need to wire any funds to US. If you want to wire, you are wiring to your own account. Therefore, your investment is absolutely safe.
Risk: L1 visa (Later EB1 green card holder) must manage their own companies. Not everyone has the courage to do so. Therefore, L1 is not for everyone neither.
Solution: Find the right project for you and the right lawyer.

EB5 投资移民风险分析

正在考虑 EB5投资移民?友情提醒:投资有风险,决策需谨慎

众所周知, 中国人有钱了。 太多人钱多得数不清。 为了孩子读书,花再多的钱都值得。 就是基于这个现象,美国EB5投资大潮的最大的弄潮儿是中国。 但是,我们中国人也是出了名地会精打细算。 咱们什么都吃,就是不吃亏。 不是吗? 50万美金的投资,毕竟是几百万。 谁想赔了啊?再说了, 移民到美国后, 还有一笔费用要计划出来给小孩子读书,给大人住。 所以,说的是投资50万美金,实际上要多计划出一些。

投资移民有几种方式:1) 投资给区域中心,办理临时绿卡,再转永久绿卡。2) 投资给自己的项目,办理 EB5 绿卡;  3) 投资给自己的项目, 办理L1 签证,然后办理绿卡; (我们下称 L1方式)。


1) 投资给区域中心。
优势: 投资给区域中心的最大的好处就是不用自己考虑雇佣人。 区域中心的聘用计划已经获得了批准。 移民局在审批临时绿卡的时候, 不再评审聘用计划。
风险:A. 很多人不知道,区域中心都是新公司。他们在申请作为区域中心的时候,都承诺移民局他们将在 2年内完成聘用计划, 也就是说, 两年内要开工。 所以,如果区域中心两年内没有开工,拿到绿卡的投资者就拿不到永久绿卡。
a) 投资者对该项目能否在 2年内开工做出自己的判断!

EB5是投资项目。 投资就意味着与区域中心分担风险。 如果区域中心承诺了退款, 以后打官司,法院不会支持, 因为你们签的合约是投资!

2)  投资给自己的项目,办理 EB5 绿卡;
很多人以为EB5就是投资给区域中心。 其实不是。 EB5的传统项目是投资给自己。 如果你有条件自己投资 50万建立新公司或和别人合伙, 你的全家也可以获得绿卡。

优势: 你的项目是在你的掌控之中。
风险: 和任何其他的项目, 你也有风险。

解决方案: 精心选择。

 3) 投资给自己的项目, 办理L1 签证,然后办理绿卡; (我们下称 L1方式)。
其实很多人不知道,不是所有的投资移民方式都要投资50万的。 投资者可以计划在美国设立分公司。根据该计划,和能够投入计划中所列的启动资金的証明,向移民局申请L1签证。 或者投资给美国的合作伙伴,由美国的伙伴申请 L1签证。 该签证可以延期若干次, 总共有效7年。 接着投资者自己的公司可以向移民局申请绿卡。 具体 L 签证的其他次要文件,请参看本律师其他的博客。

好处: 1) 在拿到绿卡前不用坐移民监。 投资者可以自由来回照顾国内的生意。 (重要吧?!)
2) 小孩子照样可以免费读读公立学校或居民的学费入私立学校; 
3) 申请绿卡的标准是申请的公司是否按计划运作了公司; 公司不一定要赚钱; 所以能否被批准, 全在于投资者是否信守对移民局的承诺。
4)如果是办理新公司,在L1签证被批准前, 投资者不用打任何资金到美国。 即使要打,也是打到自己的账上。 所以投资的安全性是绝对的。

风险: 对于选择L签证的唯一的挑战就是信心不足。 因为L签证的持有者的公司是自己的控股公司,投资者必须要参与管理。 所以, 不幸的是, L1 签证也不是适合所有的人的。

解决方案: 投资者找到适合自己的投资项目, 咨询懂中国(不仅仅是中文)的美国注册移民律师。


EB5 green card and L1 -EB1 Green Card Investors’ Concern About Continuous Residence Requirements

There are split opinions about how long a person should reside in US after they obtain green card. The majority says it is 6 months. Some say it is 1 year. As a result, some are scared to leave US even for bona fide reasons, such as for work. Especially for EB5, EB1 (L1 Visa)  investors, it is a massive challenge because in order to sustain their expense in US, they have to continue to work in their own country. Thus, the answer that follows should be very helpful.

There are two levels of requirements. One is to keep the green card. The law stipulates that in order to prove that the green card holder does not intend to abandon the permanent residence, the green card holder must stay in US in continuous manner, that is to say, he cannot be overseas for longer than one year. However, if a travel document is obtained before the long absence occurs, he can be considered as having complying with the requirement.

On the other side, if a person is absent from US for longer than 6 months, the continuous residence is broken for the purpose of naturalization. Of course, there are exceptions to this rule too. To find out whether you are eligible for naturalization, you are advised to consult a lawyer. For better result, hire a lawyer for your application.


“移民监”是关于维持绿卡的不正式的说法。95%的投资移民都要严肃地考虑这个问题,因为他们到美国来的目的仅仅是为了小孩读书, 而他们在国内有生意要做,没有条件长期在美国待着。 许多人联系我们,问我们有没有什么解决办法。

首先什么是移民监?移民监是指为了保持绿卡或申请公民, 要在美国连续生活一段时间。 其实有两个标准。 第一个是保持绿卡。 如果你在国外住上了一年以上,除非你事先申请了相关文件,你的绿卡会在你回国的时候被没收。 第二个是保持转公民的资格。 在一般情况下,如果绿卡持有者一年内在国外住了6个月, 他的公民申请就通不过。 当然也有可以被原谅的情形。 具体你符合什么情形, 建议你咨询律师, 甚至请律师代办公民申请。

Sunday, August 21, 2011

What EB5 investor should know about forming a partnership

Partnership is acceptable as a form of investment in EB5 program. Partnership is common form of ownership in United States. Knowing what you are getting into is important, isn't it?

We provide general ideas of partnership here. For better understanding, consulting with a lawyer is strongly advisable.

General Partnership
Partnership is established once two or more persons enter into agreement for profit. Partnership has the following characteristics:
1) Each partner is personally liable for business debts, taxes or tortious liability. F
2) A partnership agreement may provide for the manner in which profits and losses are to be shared.
3) Each general partner is deemed the agent of the partnership. Therefore, if that partner is apparently carrying on partnership business, all general partners can be held liable for his dealings with third persons.
4) A partnership agreement may designate certain partners to manage the partnership along the lines of a company board.

Limited Partnership

A limited partnership, like general partnership, has two or more partners. The difference is that some partners are general partners, some are limited partners. While general partner has unlimited personal liability,  a limited partner's liability is limited to the amount of his or her investment in the company. LP's are creatures of statute since they must file with the state to form them. Because of the limited liability of limited partnerships, they often are used as vehicles for raising capital. The limited partnership is a separate entity and files taxes as a separate entity.

Limited Liability Partnership
An LLP allows all the partners receive limited liability protection. In a LLP, all the partners can take an active role in managing the day-to-day affairs of the business. In order to form LLP, an LLP must first register with the Secretary of State. An LLP formed in another state must register with the Secretary of State where they conduct business. 

Even if you have a basic understanding now about partnership, you should retain a lawyer to choose the best form for you.

EB5 Program Made Safe

EB5 Program is not news anymore. Many people have heard of it. Usually people mistake EB5 program with EB5 pilot program, which means investing in regional centers. As a matter of fact, investor may invest in a standalone business and create 10 direct jobs to meet the requirements. The standalone business could be:
1) Established after Nov. 29, 1990, or
2) Established on or before Nov. 29, 1990, that is:
A. Purchased and the existing business is restructured or reorganized in such a way that a new commercial enterprise results, or
B. Expanded through the investment so that a 40-percent increase in the net worth or number of employees occurs

The business may take form in
A sole proprietorship
Partnership (whether limited or general)
Holding company
Joint venture
Business trust or other entity, which may be publicly or privately owned

In this sense, EB5 investors don't have to "pay and pray". They can be in control if they want to. Now, isn't it a good news?

Friday, August 19, 2011

L1 签证申请者的好消息: 最大限度地保证投资的安全的办法

许多人已经明白 L1签证相比 EB5 项目需要的投资要少。 但, 对于许多人生地不熟的新移民来说, 就算你看中了一个项目, 但要把钱先打入项目在说能不能拿到L1签证,也不是不让人担心的事情。

事实上,有个方案可以解决这个问题。 这个方案就是: L1 签证新公司。

你可以成立一个新公司。 以新公司的名义申请跨国经理和特殊人才。 凭一个写得很好的投资方案, 你可以获得L1签证。 这样,你不用在得到 L1签证前打钱到美国。 即便要打, 你也是打给你自己的。

在你得到了 L1签证后, 你可以和你的伙伴成立合伙企业, 然后你可以申请 L1签证的延期和申请绿卡。

在这样的情况下,在 L1签证的申请过程中, 你的钱始终是在你自己的口袋里。 你喜欢这个方案吗?

How to protect your personal interest as L1 visa beneficiary?

Many people understand L1 visa requires much less money to obtain US legal status to USA. However, let’s face it, L1 visa sounds a little scary too because, as with EB5, investors need to invest and stay uncertain that the money is out of pocket whereas the visa is not in your hand.

Well, there is a solution here, which is L1 visa for new company.

What you can do is to set up a company and petition as a new company for multi-national executives, managers and special knowledge professional. You visa may be granted based on a thoroughly-written business plan. That way, you don’t have to wire money to US, or if you do, you wire to yourself.

After you receive your L1 visa, you may form partnership with some company to pursue your goal set up in your business plan. You then can apply for extension of L1 visa and pursue green card from there.

This way, you don’t have to really invest until you actually receive L1 visa and that you are in control of your funds from start to finish. Don’t you like that idea?!!

Thursday, August 18, 2011

New Procedures for Processing EB-5 Petitions

USCIS is enhancing the EB-5 immigrant investor program by transforming the intake and review process.  In May, USCIS proposed fundamental enhancements to streamline the EB-5 process which include: extending the availability of premium processing for certain EB-5 applications and petitions;  implementing direct lines of communication between the applicants and USCIS; and providing applicants with the opportunity for an interview before a USCIS panel of experts to resolve outstanding issues in an application.  After reviewing stakeholder feedback on the proposal, USCIS will begin implementing the first of these enhancements within 30 days.

Availability of H-1B Visas to Entrepreneurs

Entrepreneurs with an ownership stake in their own companies, including sole employees, may be able to establish the necessary employer-employee relationship to obtain an H1-B visa, if they can demonstrate that the company has the independent right to control their employment. USCIS has updated existing FAQs to clarify this issue.

听说,企业家自己可以为自己申请工作签证, 是这样吗?

根据最近 USCIS的消息,企业主如果能証明公司有权利雇佣和解雇人员, 他就可以申请 H1B. 当然他同样需要满足其他H1的条件

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

How long does it take for L1 visa to be approved?

It depends on a couple of factors: 1) workload of the USCIS; 2) the preparation of the petitioning packet and 3) whether the petitioning choose premium service.
Depending on where the company is, the petition is processed in different service center. How soon you can hear back from USCIS depends on how busy the center is. Vermont, for instance, promises to take one month to process L1 visa petition. California, on the other hand, promises 2 months. However, it is uncommon for service center to take longer than they state on USCIS website.
If the preparation is not sufficient, USCIS will reject (not deny at first), which drags the petition long.

If the petitioner choose premium service, the USCIS will guarantee a decision within 15 days.

How long do I have to wait to get my green card?

It is not uncommon for people to wait for a long time to immigrate to US. They not only have to wait for petition to be approved, which depends on the category of petition and workload of USCIS. More than often, they have to wait for indefinite time after their petitions are approved. Why is that?

The reason immigration beneficiaries need to wait for long time is because The Immigration and Nationality Act (INA) sets the number of immigrant visas that may be issued to individuals seeking permanent resident status (a green card) each year.

Immigrant visas available to “immediate relatives” of U.S. citizens are unlimited, so are always available.  Family sponsored preference categories are limited to 226,000 per year and employment based preference visa are limited to 140,000 per year.  In addition, there are limits to the percentage of visas that can be allotted to each country.

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Can I apply for Green Card while on E2 Visa?

The answer is yes. There are two types of visas. One is immigrant visa, another one is non-immigrant visa. Immigrant visa is base for adjustment of status--green card. E2 visa is non-immigrant visa. Adjustment of status is not automatic. However, E2 visa holder can apply for family-based immigrant visa or employment-based immigrant visa in order to adjust status to permanent residence.


Monday, August 15, 2011

Am I qualified for H1-B Visa?

This is an actually two-part question. Part 1: Am I qualified for H-1B visa? Which type of H-1B visa am I qualified for?

There are three types of H1-B visa. The law holds different requirements for each one.

The first type is H1-B for special occupation. What is special occupation? Special occupation is defined by law as a job that is so complex or unique that it can be performed only by an individual with a bachelor or higher degree. Therefore, for a person to qualify for H1-B, he must have completed US bachelor or higher degree, or hold a equivalent foreign degree, or have education, training or experience that is equivalent to the completion of such a degree.

The second type is  H-1B2, DOD temporary work visa for DOD Researcher and Development Project Worker. The job must be a cooperative research and development project or a co-production project is provided for under a government-to-government agreement administered by the U.S. Department of Defense.
To be eligible for this visa category one must have completed a U.S. bachelor’s or higher degree required by the specific specialty occupation from an accredited college or university or its equivalent, including equivalent foreign degree or training or education or experience.
There is also a type of H-1B visa designed for Models. For a fashion model to obtain H-1B visa, the job must require a fashion model of prominence. Prominence means a person is renowned, leading in the field of fashion modeling. To be eligible for this visa category you must be a fashion model of distinguished merit and ability. Noted, H-1B2 does not require a bachelor degree or higher.

What is L1 B Visa?

L-1 Visa is intracompany transferee visa. Many people tend to think it is meant only for executives. Actually, by law, Specialized knowledge professional are qualified for L-1 B visa.

Who are these Specialized Knowledge Professionals? Specialized knowledge means special knowledge possessed by an individual of the petitioning organization's product, service, research, equipment, techniques, management, or other interests and its application in international markets, or an advanced level of knowledge or expertise in the organization's processes and procedures.
Thus, professionals having such specialized knowledge are eligible L-1B applicant.

Saturday, August 13, 2011

I like the idea of L1 visa, but I don't know what to do in US. What can I do?

Many people love the idea to immigrate through L1 visa. but they can't take advantage of this opportunity because they are reluctant to operate a company in US. However, one thing they don't know is that they don't have to.

There are two types of L1 visa, as far as the petitioner is concerned.  Foreign company can either send a person to open a new company, or have a joint venture with existing US company. For instance, if a foreign company invests 51% share in an existing commercial real estate company, they can oversee specific transaction and let others do the actual work. That way, they get to control the company with the help of the other partners and existing personnel.

Therefore, if a foreign company can buy 51% share of profitable existing business, the foreign company can get L1 visa and then green card. 

我听说 L1签证很好。 但我不知道如何在美国操作公司, 我该怎么办?

有两种方式获得 L1 签证。 一种是到美国开新的公司, 并且已经租赁了办公地点; 这种方式不适合所有的人,因为很多需要到美国来的人人生地不熟, 语言不通,不懂得如何操作公司。 所以很多人听说L1后, 却迟迟不能行动; 另一种方式是购买 50% 以上的商业股份。 比如, 一个外国公司购买在美国运作房地产的公司的51%的股份,在老股东的帮助下,可以顺利地运作该公司, 并且能得到签证。

I am canadian. I heard there is a special work visa for me. Is that true?

TN Visa for Canadian and Mexicans

Good news for Canadian and Mexican citizens. Under North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA),  Canadian and Mexican citizens may apply for TN visa to work in the U.S. in a designated professions in NAFTA.

The applicant may obtain a TN visa in a US consulate in Canada with a letter from employer in the US indicating that the position in question in the U.S. requires the employment of a person in a professional capacity and evidence that the applicant is qualified for the position.

Friday, August 12, 2011

What is Labor certificate

A permanent labor certification issued by the Department of Labor (DOL) allows an employer to hire a foreign worker to work permanently in the United States. In most instances, before the U.S. employer can submit an immigration petition to USCIS, the employer must obtain a certified labor certification. The DOL must certify to the USCIS that there are not sufficient U.S. workers able, willing, qualified and available to accept the job opportunity in the area of intended employment and that employment of the foreign worker will not adversely affect the wages and working conditions of similarly employed U.S. workers.

Applications filed on or after March 28, 2005, must comply with the new PERM process and adhere to the new PERM Regulation;
There must be a bona fide, full-time permanent job opening available to U.S. workers.
Job requirements must adhere to what is customarily required for the occupation in the U.S. and may not be tailored to the foreign worker's qualifications. In addition, the employer shall document that the job opportunity is described without unduly restrictive job requirements, unless adequately documented as arising from business necessity.
The employer must pay at least the prevailing wage for the occupation in the area of intended employment.

The advantage of L1 Visa.

The money is always in your pocket. You don’t have to invest in others and have nightmares;
You can travel as much as you can; there is no immigration jail.
Your spouse and dependent can come with you;
Your children go to school without paying international student tuition;
There is no wait for Labor Certificate when applying for green card;

L1 Visa 的好处:

1. 你的钱始终在你的口袋里;

What is Labor certificate

What is labor certificate

A permanent labor certification issued by the Department of Labor (DOL) allows an employer to hire a foreign worker to work permanently in the United States. In most instances, before the U.S. employer can submit an immigration petition to USCIS, the employer must obtain a certified labor certification. The DOL must certify to the USCIS that there are not sufficient U.S. workers able, willing, qualified and available to accept the job opportunity in the area of intended employment and that employment of the foreign worker will not adversely affect the wages and working conditions of similarly employed U.S. workers.

Applications filed on or after March 28, 2005, must comply with the new PERM process and adhere to the new PERM Regulation;
There must be a bona fide, full-time permanent job opening available to U.S. workers.
Job requirements must adhere to what is customarily required for the occupation in the U.S. and may not be tailored to the foreign worker's qualifications. In addition, the employer shall document that the job opportunity is described without unduly restrictive job requirements, unless adequately documented as arising from business necessity.
The employer must pay at least the prevailing wage for the occupation in the area of intended employment.

Am I qualified to obtain H1-B?

H1-B is nonimmigrant visa for temporary worker in specialty occupation. To qualify H1B, you must intend to work in specialty occupation.

You may consider to apply for H-1B if
you have a bachelor’s or higher degree or its equivalent
the nature of the specific duties is so specialized and complex that the knowledge required to perform the duties is usually associated with the attainment of a bachelor’s or higher degree.
 or 3) have education, training, or progressively responsible experience in the specialty that is equivalent to the completion of such a degree, and have recognition of expertise in the specialty through progressively responsible positions directly related to the specialty.

According to the newly announced clarification, self-employed entrepreneurs are able to obtain H1B if he or she can prove qualified employer-employee relationship and the company has independent control over the beneficiary.

Friday, August 5, 2011

L1-Visa or EB-1 Visa?

Employment-Based Immigration: First Preference EB-1(c)
You may be eligible for an employment-based, first-preference visa if you are a multinational executive or manager. Each occupational category has certain requirements that must be met:
You must have been employed outside the United States in the 3 years preceding the petition for at least 1 year by a firm or corporation and you must be seeking to enter the United States to continue service to that firm or organization. Your employment must have been outside the United States in a managerial or executive capacity and with the same employer, an affiliate, or a subsidiary of the employer.

Your petitioning employer must be a U.S. employer. Your employer must have been doing business for at least 1 year, as an affiliate, a subsidiary, or as the same corporation or other legal entity that employed you abroad.

The difference between L-1 Visa and EB-1(c) visa is that the latter can be base for adjustment of status.

谁能申请 L-1 签证--公司内部调动员工签证?


“子公司”是指公司直接或间接地拥有一半以上的财产和控制权; 或直接或间接地
拥有50% 的50-50的合资公司并有同等的控制和否决权, 或者直接或间接地拥有少于一半的公司财产,但事实上控制该公司。

“兄弟公司”是指(1)两个公司的母公司是一家公司或一个人; 或者 (2)两个公司的股东是同一些人,这些股东持有相同股份; 或者 (3) 在美国公司成立的伙伴公司,提供同样的服务。

任何满足以上条件的公司都可以为外国公司的合格员工申请L-1 签证--公司内部员工调动签证。

Who is qualified to petition L-1 Visa- Intracompany Transferee Visa?

General. Under section 101(a)(15)(L) of the Act, Intracompany Transferee Visa (L-1 Visa) allows an alien who, within three years has been employed abroad continuously for one year by a legal entity to enter the United States temporarily in order to render his or her services to a branch of the same employer or a parent, affiliate, or subsidiary as a manager or specialized worker. 

The the section of the Act defines qualifying organization as follows:

"Parent" means a firm, corporation, or other legal entity which has subsidiaries.
“Branch" means an operating division or office of the same organization housed in a different location.
“Subsidiary” means a firm, corporation, or other legal entity of which a parent owns, directly or indirectly, more than half of the entity and controls the entity; or owns, directly or indirectly, half of the entity and controls the entity; or owns, directly or indirectly, 50 percent of a 50-50 joint venture and has equal control and veto power over the entity; or owns, directly or indirectly, less than half of the entity, but in fact controls the entity.
“Affiliate means” (1)  One of two subsidiaries both of which are owned and controlled by the same parent or individual, or (2) One of two legal entities owned and controlled by the same group of individuals, each individual owning and controlling approximately the same share or proportion of each entity, or (3) In the case of a partnership that is organized in the United States to provide accounting services along with managerial and/or consulting services and that markets its accounting services under an internationally recognized name under an agreement with a worldwide coordinating organization that is owned and controlled by the member accounting firms, a partnership (or similar organization) that is organized outside the United States to provide accounting services shall be considered to be an affiliate of the United States partnership if it markets its accounting services under the same internationally recognized name under the agreement with the worldwide coordinating organization of which the United States partnership is also a member.

Any legal entity having above-mentioned relationship with a foreign legal entity is eligible to petition for L1 Visa for Intracompany Transferee.

Thursday, August 4, 2011


许多投资者倾向认为投资区域中心是USCIS指定的,投资给他们一定很安全。 这种假设和事实相差甚远。







如果该项目的经济模式和商业计划看上去可行,可以直接或间接地创造工作机会, 并投资的行

业是被USCIS认可的, USCIS就会批准该项目成为区域中心。





根据上面的说法,美国政府不担保区域中心的投资的安全。 进而,投资给区域中心后, 能否

拿到永久绿卡也不是板上订钉的。 比方说,如果投资的钱并不是真的有风险,或该项目没有创

造足够的工作,投资者的申请就会被拒绝。 投资需谨慎。

什么是 EB5? 什么是 EB5区域中心

EB5项目和EB5 区域中心是两个流行的新词。 常常人们将他们混为一谈。 那么什么是EB5项目, 什么又是 EB5区域中心呢?

EB5项目,又称为移民投资项目,是国会在1990年为了刺激美国经济,通过外国投资者的投资创造工作机会而建立的项目。移民投资者可以通过建立一个新的商业企业或者投资到一个困难企业。 每年有10000个投资移民的名额。 自1992年起,3000个名额分配给USCIS根据对经济的影响的预测而指定的区域中心。

EB5 项目要求移民投资 50万或者 1百万 (取决于是否是在特定的雇佣地区。)特别雇佣地区是那些失业率高于全国水平1.5倍的地区。

新的公司必须要在投资者活动绿卡到美国后两年内 (或在特殊的情况下,两年后一段合理的时间内)聘用10个以上全职员工。

EB5有两种方式。 一种是直接投资, 另一种是投资给USCIS指定的区域中心。 如果是直接投资,投资者必须直接聘用员工。 如果通过USCIS指定的区域中心,投资者可以间接雇佣员工。

Wednesday, August 3, 2011

What is EB5 Regional Center?

We talked about EB5 in the previous blog. Notably, it is intimidating for a foreigner to invest in a country far from their home country,  a country they barely know anybody or anything. In most cases, language is the first factor to consider and the deal breaker.
In response to such concern, in 1992, U.S congress created Immigrant Investor Pilot Program and has extended it through Sept. 30, 2012. Pilot Program provides for investments that are affiliated with an economic unit known as a “Regional Center.” EB-5 requirements for an investor under the Pilot Program are essentially the same as in the standard EB-5 investor program, except the Job creation requirement of EB 5 program can be met through indirect jobs created by Regional Center. Thus this way, investors are not required to manage their new enterprises after they set up one, neither do they have the burden to provide, let alone manage, 10 US jobs.
Many investors tend to think that since Regional Center is designated by USCIS, investment in them must be safe. This assumption is far from truth.
The organizers of a regional center seeking the “Regional Center” designation from USCIS must submit a proposal, supported by economically or statistically valid forecasting tools, showing:
How the regional center plans to focus on a geographical region within the United States. The proposal must explain how the regional center will promote economic growth in that region.
How, in verifiable detail (using economic models in some instances), jobs will be created directly or indirectly through capital investments made in accordance with the regional center’s business plan.
The amount and source of capital committed to the regional center and the promotional efforts made and planned for the business project.
How the regional center will have a positive impact on the regional or national economy.

Standard of Approval
The approval of a regional center means USCIS recognizes the economic entity as a designated participant in the EB-5 Pilot Program. A regional center will be approved if  the econometric models and business plans appear to be feasible and that jobs should be directly or indirectly created through investment in the approved industry categories.
Regional Center Termination
If a regional center designated for participation in the EB-5 pilot program no longer serves the purpose of promoting economic growth, improved regional productivity, job creation and increased domestic capital investment, USCIS can terminate the Regional Center designation.
Consumer/Investor Protection
To address the previous assumption, the Regional Center designation does not mean that the regional center’s capital investment projects are backed or guaranteed by the government. Further, there are no guarantees that an investor may ultimately be granted unconditional permanent resident status through an EB-5 investment. For example, if it is determined that the investor’s money is not truly at risk or that insufficient jobs were created through the investment, then the investor’s petition may be denied. Investors should exercise due diligence when making an EB-5 investment.

What is EB5 Program?

EB-5 and EB5 Regional Center are two buzz words. They occur often side by side in people’s conversation. What exactly are EB-5 and EB-5 Regional Center?

EB5 program, also known as the Immigrant Investor Program, was created by Congress in 1990 to stimulate the U.S economy through job creation and capital investment by immigrant investors . Immigrant investors who create a new commercial enterprise or invest in a troubled business, at the same time create 10 jobs will be eligible for permanent residence. There are 10,000 EB-5 immigrant visas available annually. Since 1992, and regularly reauthorized since then, 3,000 EB-5 visas are also set aside for investors in Regional Centers designated by USCIS based on proposals for promoting economic growth.

EB5  program requires that the immigrant make a capital investment of either $500,000 or $1,000,000 (depending on whether the investment is in a Targeted Employment Area [TEA] or not) in a new commercial enterprise located within the United States. TEA is defined by law as “a rural area or an area that has experienced high unemployment of at least 150 percent of the national average.”

The new commercial enterprise must create or preserve 10 full-time jobs for qualifying U.S. workers within two years (or under certain circumstances, within a reasonable time after the two year period) of the immigrant investor’s admission to the United States as a Conditional Permanent Resident (CPR).

There are two distinctive EB5 pathway for immigrant investors. One is direct investment, another one is to invest in a new commercial enterprise affiliated with a USCIS-designated regional center under the Regional Center Pilot Program. n immigrant investing in a new commercial enterprise under the Basic Program may only satisfy the job creation requirements through the creation of direct jobs. Yet an immigrant investor may satisfy the job creation requirements of the program through the creation of either direct or indirect jobs, which means jobs created collaterally or as a result of capital invested in a Indirect jobs are those jobs shown a commercial enterprise affiliated with a regional center by an EB-5 investor.