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  • Residence in the United States Through Investment: Reality or Chimera?

    The U.S. immigration system has long contained provisions which permit long-term or permanent status in the United States through investment by a foreign investor. For many years, until 1990, a foreigner theoretically could seek immigrant status as an investor in a “nonpreference” category. Under the system of allocating visas in force at that time, nonpreference visas would be available if any immigrant visas remained after demand in all of the preference categories had been satisfied. Not surprisingly, because of perennial high demand for immigrant visas, the nonpreference avenue to permanent resident status became unavailable in September 1978 and never reemerged as a realistic alternative for immigration into the United States.