H-1B and F-1 Visa Holders’ Growing Interest in EB-5

Posted on Mar 5, 2024 by Rakesh Patel and Jacqueline Trevino

The EB-5 Immigrant Investor Program has gained significant attention from individuals holding H-1B and F-1 visas in the US. These visa holders, who seek pathways to permanent residency and greater flexibility in their lives, are increasingly turning to the EB-5 program as a viable option. The increase in interest stems from concurrent filing, which locks in the ages of an investor’s children who are unmarried and under the age of 21, the ability for children to attend school in the US while the case is pending, and the program’s independence from employer sponsorship requirements. 

When an investor files concurrently, it effectively locks the ages of their children at the time of filing. This means that the children’s ages are fixed and will not change throughout the processing period. This is particularly advantageous for families with children nearing the age of 21, as they may otherwise age out of eligibility for derivative benefits, potentially jeopardizing their chances of obtaining permanent residency. By locking in the ages, concurrent filing ensures that families can navigate the immigration process without fear of their children aging out and losing eligibility. 

Many H-1B and F-1 visa holders also have children who are studying or aspire to study in the US. When an individual files concurrently, their spouse and unmarried children under the age of 21, are also eligible to receive employment authorization and advance parole documents. These documents enable them to work and pursue education in the US while the case is pending.  

Unlike the H-1B visa, which ties the visa holder to a specific employer, and the F-1 visa, which may have limits on off-campus employment, the EB-5 program offers greater flexibility. By concurrently filing, investors can secure employment authorization and advance parole documents, granting them the freedom to work and study anywhere in the US while their adjustment of status application is also pending. 

Moreover, the EB-5 program eliminates the need for employer sponsorship, a requirement of the H-1B visa, and eliminates concerns about job loss since investors are not bound to find new employment within 60 days, unlike H-1B workers. 

Additionally, there are many countries, such as India, that face decade-long wait times for an employment-based green card, such as for H-1B visa holders. This makes concurrent filing even more appealing since the EB-5 set-aside visa category priority dates on the visa bulletin are current for all countries. 

Ultimately, the EB-5 Immigrant Investor Program is one of the fastest paths to secure permanent residency in the US. Those already in the US on a valid visa such as H-1B or F-1 have the advantage of avoiding consular processing for a conditional green card and can concurrently file for adjustment of status, streamlining their path to residency. 

To learn more about the benefits of concurrent filing, please visit: https://patellegal.com/blog/concurrent-filing-sparks-increased-interest-in-the-eb-5-program-2/ 

 If you have any questions regarding the EB-5 process, please email us at rpatel@patellegal.comandjtrevino@patellegal.com.