Business visas allow you to enter and live in the U.S. legally.

Did you know that there are business visas that allow you to enter and live in the United States legally?

This week, in my column in La Opinión, I cover the subject.

Each year, the U.S. government grants visas to foreign investors and their immediate families that allow them to live temporarily or permanently in the country. These types of visas are not popular because of their high cost and because you have to invest a large sum of money to be eligible. But it is an option for those who have the financial means or access to legal capital to invest.

One of these visas is the Immigrant Job Creation Visa, commonly known as the EB-5 investor visa program. The U.S. government authorizes the issuance of up to 10,000 of these visas per year to foreign entrepreneurs who contribute to the economic growth of the U.S. by investing in businesses and creating employment opportunities in the country.

The EB-5 visa allows the qualifying investor to enter the U.S. with his or her spouse and unmarried children under the age of 21.

This visa requires an investment of one million dollars that must be used to create a commercial enterprise or to save a business that is facing difficulties. The investment must benefit the country's economy and directly create and maintain 10 full-time jobs.

It is a prerequisite that the investor is personally involved in the management of the enterprise or supervises the managers of the commercial enterprise.

If the foreign investor decides to invest in a rural area with a high level of unemployment, the amount required by the government can be reduced to US$500,000.

Investment funds may be in the form of cash, equipment, or other tangible equivalents, and must be derived from a valid and lawful source. The investor and his or her immediate family may live and work wherever they wish within the United States.

If all EB-5 visa requirements are met during a conditional two-year period, the investor and his or her immediate family may be granted permanent residency.

The process to obtain this type of visa is complex so I recommend, as always, that you seek advice from an immigration attorney.