EB-5 Fraud is on the rise. From immigration attorneys acting as unregistered broker-dealers to scammers preying on unsuspecting investors the field is a potential trap for the unwary.
In 1990 the US Congress devised the Immigration Investment Program in the hopes of attracting capital to the US from foreign investors. The program came to be known as the EB-5 program. As a means to attract investments Congress offered the potential for Visas, “Green Cards” and residency status to foreigners who agreed to invest at least a million dollars into a business that agreed to employ or continued to employ at least ten full time US workers. The EB-5 program also provided that a $500,000 investment in a “rural area” or an area of “high unemployment” would qualify.
As a result, investments grew around so called “Regional Center Investments” such as hotels, business parks, warehouses or other “economic units” that offered the prospects for job growth.