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What are the I-526E and I-829 petitions?

The EB-5 visa process involves two crucial petitions: I-526E and I-829. Here’s a simple breakdown of their functions:

I-526E Petition: Petition by Immigrant Entrepreneur – a prerequisite to obtaining your conditional green card

  • Purpose: This petition initiates your EB-5 immigration journey. You file it with USCIS to demonstrate that you meet the program’s requirements.
  • Key Requirements:
    • Qualifying Investment: You must have invested $800,000 (or $1,050,000) in a USCIS-approved EB-5 project.
    • Lawful Source of Funds: You need to prove the investment comes from legitimate sources.
    • Job Creation: The investment must create or preserve at least 10 full-time jobs for qualified U.S. workers.
    • Personal Information: You must provide an honest and thorough representation of yourself, and all other family members included in your petition
  • Outcome: With I-526E approval, you can proceed with filing Form I-485, the Application to Register Permanent Residence or Adjust Status. This application initiates the green card issuance process. Assuming your I-485 is also approved, you’ll typically receive a conditional green card, valid for two years.

I-829 Petition: Petition by Investor to Remove Conditions on Permanent Resident Status

  • Purpose: This petition applies to remove the conditions on your initial (conditional) green card, typically valid for two years.
  • Key Requirements:
    • Job Creation: For I-829 approval, you must demonstrate that your EB-5 investment has indeed created the required 10 jobs.
    • Maintained Lawful Residence: In order to be approved, you must display that you resided in the U.S. lawfully and ensure that you did not spend extended periods outside the U.S. since receiving your conditional green card.
  • Outcome: Upon approval, your conditional green card becomes a permanent green card, granting you full residency privileges in the United States.

By understanding these petitions, EB-5 investors can navigate the green card process more effectively