On February 24, 2010, Senators John Kerry (D-MA) and Richard Lugar (R-IN) introduced the StartUp Visa Act of 2010. This proposed legislation, if passed into law, would create a second immigrant (“green card”) investor visa category for foreign entrepreneurs.
The current immigrant investor category, known as the EB-5 category, requires an investment of $1 million of the foreign investor’s personal, at-risk funds which must be used to create 10 new jobs for U.S. workers. The investment amount can be lowered to $500,000 if the investment is made in an area designated as a high-unemployment area. Very few foreign investors take advantage of this option because of the relatively high amount of at-risk, personal funds needed to qualify.
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