When it comes to the EB-5 investor visa application process, receiving approval on an I-526 or I-526E petition from the United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) is only half the battle toward receiving this in-demand visa. Following your petition’s approval, aspiring EB-5 investors – and your family members, if applicable – will be subject to an interview in the U.S. Consulate or Embassy in your home country to determine your eligibility to immigrate to the United States.
Arriving at this interview fully prepared and with the right documents in hand is essential to securing your EB-5 visa and should be taken with the utmost care. Any discrepancies or misrepresentation of facts during the interview could cause the interviewer to deny your EB-5 visa, while other issues like a prior criminal history, certain health problems, or a record of any previous unauthorized entry into the United States may also result in your visa’s rejection.
Keep reading for insider tips to make sure your interview process goes smoothly and put your EB-5 investor visa on track for approval.
Arranging Your Documents
While the specific documents required for the interview process will vary from applicant to applicant, staying up to date with documentation commonly requested by the USCIS will allow you to prepare for the other parts of the interview with ease. No matter what, make sure to bring along any documents you previously submitted to the U.S. National Visa Center.
Commonly requested documents include:
- A copy of Form DS-260, the USCIS’s Immigrant Visa Electronic Application
- A copy of your I-526 petition with accompanying documents
- Passport with at least six months validity ahead of intended U.S. entry date
- Color passport photographs
- Birth certificate
- Marriage certificates and divorce decrees, if applicable
- Sealed medical examination results, if applicable
- Evidence, such as a letter from a financial institution, showing the release of EB-5 investment capital from escrow
Please note that any documents in a language other than English must be accompanied by a translation to English when brought to the interview.
Preparing for Interview Questions
The approval of your EB-5 visa hinges on the interviewer determining that your supporting documents and DS-260 filing match up with the answers provided in your interview. This high-stakes scenario is undeniably stressful for most applicants, so extensive preparation is essential to making sure your interview goes off without a hitch – even amid understandable nerves.
While your interviewer has the right to ask any question related to your visa petition, most questions will likely center around the EB-5 investment project itself and the corresponding financials.
To best answer the interviewer’s prompts, you should:
- Arrive with full knowledge and up-to-date understanding of the EB-5 investment project’s business plan, description, and key highlights.
- Be prepared to answer how many jobs the investment is projected to create, the method of job creation, how many investors are involved in the project, your responsibilities as an investor in the business, the projected capital raise, and explain the source and path of funds.
- Bring along a one-page executive summary of the project’s business plan, the investment’s full business plan, and your corresponding I-526 petition, even if not specifically requested when you were notified about your interview.
- Get ready to answer questions about your personal history and background with full transparency, including information about criminal records, employment history, family information, and dependents.
Don’t forget, consistency and honesty are key: ensuring that your interview answers align with all of your supporting documents is the most efficient way to breeze through the interview process.
Likewise, don’t hesitate to consult with an immigration attorney ahead of time to help maximize the outcome of your EB-5 visa interview. These specialists can offer expert guidance, provide services like creating a flow of funds chart specific to your investment project, and conduct practice interviews before your actual appointment arrives.
By carefully following the guidelines above, you’ll put yourself in the best position to get your EB-5 investor visa approved post-interview as promptly as possible.