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North Carolina immigrant visas issued through EB-5 program

A program that is government-approved, but not well known, is helping developers raise building funds throughout the nation. North Carolina is among the states where funds for construction projects are coming from wealthy foreigners who are interested in acquiring immigrant visas. When all requirements are met, the EB-5 program can lead to permanent residency in the United States.

The program began 25 years ago, but it is virtually unknown to the general public. Each year, more than 10,000 applicants gain visas by investing at least $500,000 into government-approved new building projects. The government's reasoning is that the foreign investments help create jobs related to the construction projects. 

Once the visa is acquired, the investor may enter and reside in the United States. He or she may bring a spouse and children under 21 years of age. Some who oppose the program claim that the government is merely selling citizenship. Others see it as a way to benefit foreigners who wish to become U.S. residents, while helping to build the nation's economy at the same time.

Reports indicate that a large number of wealthy investors who are applying for immigrant visas through the EB-5 program come from China. Many say that they are willing to invest in American businesses so that their children have the opportunity to attend American schools. Some have even cited China's growing pollution problem as a reason for their moves to the United States.

Those who wish to move to and reside in North Carolina face a complex legal process. This process can be simplified greatly with the assistance of a legal professional experienced in immigration. By working with an attorney, one can learn more about the options one has for obtaining an immigrant visa. 

Source:, "Visa, for a price: NC developer raises funds with little-known immigration program", Ely Portillo, Feb. 28, 2015

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