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IMMIGRATION LAW AND THE BASICS FOR SELLING REAL PROPERTY TO CLIENTS WHO DO NOT HOLD U.S. CITIZENSHIP Presented by Mary Carmen Madrid-Crost, Esq.

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Presentation on theme: "IMMIGRATION LAW AND THE BASICS FOR SELLING REAL PROPERTY TO CLIENTS WHO DO NOT HOLD U.S. CITIZENSHIP Presented by Mary Carmen Madrid-Crost, Esq."— Presentation transcript:

1 IMMIGRATION LAW AND THE BASICS FOR SELLING REAL PROPERTY TO CLIENTS WHO DO NOT HOLD U.S. CITIZENSHIP Presented by Mary Carmen Madrid-Crost, Esq.

2 Can citizens of foreign countries purchase real estate ? YES. The United States does not impose restrictions on foreign buyers of real estate as long as the buyer or a third party is willing to finance the transaction. Also, the foreign buyer must have the requisite documentation to be able to pay real estate taxes or capital gains tax if the property is sold in the future.

3 IRCA I MMIGRATION R EFORM AND C ONTROL A CT, EFFECTIVE N OV. 7, 1986 Immigration and Nationality Act (INA) §274 – It is unlawful to hire, recruit or refer for a fee, a person who is not authorized to work in the U.S., INA §274A(a)(1); unfair immigration-related employer practices (UIREP) are prohibited (and subject to sanctions), INA §274B The foreign buyer needs either one of the following – Tax identification number (TIN) Social Security Number (SSN) Federal Employer Identification Number (FEIN) If the buyer is a business organization

4 IRCA I MMIGRATION R EFORM AND C ONTROL A CT, EFFECTIVE N OV. 7, 1986 Immigration and Nationality Act (INA) §274 – It is unlawful to hire, recruit or refer for a fee, a person who is not authorized to work in the U.S., INA §274A(a)(1); unfair immigration-related employer practices (UIREP) are prohibited (and subject to sanctions), INA §274B If foreign nationals are not restricted from buying real estate, why would the buyers immigration status matter? T o obtain a social security number - issued only to those who are authorized to work; T o be able to remain in the U.S. if the condition of the purchase is for the property to be the buyers primary residence; and T o encourage a potential buyer to consider purchasing real estate after becoming aware of options to carry out business in the U.S.

5 IRCA I MMIGRATION R EFORM AND C ONTROL A CT, EFFECTIVE N OV. 7, 1986 Immigration and Nationality Act (INA) §274 – It is unlawful to hire, recruit or refer for a fee, a person who is not authorized to work in the U.S., INA §274A(a)(1); unfair immigration-related employer practices (UIREP) are prohibited (and subject to sanctions), INA §274B

6 Non-Immigrant Visas Visas requiring maintenance of residence abroad Visas allowing dual intent Other non-immigrant visas

7 Visas Requiring Maintenance of Residence Abroad B1/B2: Business visitors/visitors for pleasure H-2B: Temporary workers for less than a year due to seasonal, intermittent, peak-load, and one time only situations (see link for H-2B Participating Countries) H-2B Participating Countries F-1: Academic students M-1:Vocational students J-1: Au pair to post-doctoral professionals Q-1: Cultural exchange R-1: Religious workers

8 Visa Waiver Program May enter the U.S. for 90 days without a visitors visa Applies to citizens of certain countries pursuant to DHS policy (see link for countries participating in the Visa Waiver Program)Visa Waiver Program Violation disqualifies the individual from this program

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10 Other non-immigrant visa types Diplomats NATO International Media Law Enforcement Related Visas: S – material witnesses to the prosecution of a crime T – victims of severe form of human trafficking U – victims of certain crimes There are other types of non-immigrant visas but are not applicable in the context of buying or selling real estate.

11 Immigrant Visas Unless the visa is immediately available as defined by law, visas are issued on a priority date system. Visas are immediately available to: Immediate Relatives Beneficiaries of the following types of employment-based immigrant petition - Outstanding Professionals Multinational Executives Outstanding Researchers and Professors Exceptional Ability Aliens Advanced Degree Professionals (except China and India) Special Immigrant Religious Workers Other Special Immigrants

12 Immigrant Visas Family Based Immigration TypeMay 2012 Priority Date (Europe) F-1 – unmarried children of US citizens01MAY05 F-2A – spouse & unmarried child of permanent resident parent 15NOV09 F-2B – unmarried son or daughter of a permanent resident parent 22FEB04 F-3 – married son or daughter of US citizen parent 08MAR02 F-4 – siblings of US citizens01DEC00

13 Immigrant Visas Employment Based Immigration TypeMay 2012 Priority Date (Europe) EB-1 - Outstanding Aliens; Multinational Executives Current EB-2 – Exceptional Ability Aliens; Professionals with Advance Degrees or Equivalent Current EB-3 – Skilled Workers; Unskilled Other Workers 01MAY06 EB-4 – Special ImmigrantsCurrent EB-5 – EntrepreneursCurrent

14 Immigrant Visas Diversity Visas (Visa Lottery) Asylees and Refugees with credible fear of persecution based on race, religion, nationality, social group and political opinion VAWA - Violence Against Women Act (which also protects men who experience abuse) Holders of T and U visas can apply for the green card as well.

15 Immigrant Visas Cancellation of Removal 10 years of continuous physical presence good moral character existence of qualifying relatives: US citizen or permanent resident spouse, parent or child who will suffer extreme hardship if the individual is removed from the United States.

16 Conclusion Realtors can be in a better position to strategically expand their market as they inform potential real estate buyers of visa options they may qualify for through the help of licensed, reliable and knowledgeable immigration professionals. To make sure that potential buyers do not fall prey to notorious non-licensed immigration services that tend to thrive in the immigrant communities, please visit

17 Useful Links Visa Waiver Program Counties H-2B Countries a/?vgnextoid=812f47c25cbe4310VgnVCM ca60aRCRD&vgnextchannel=3381c 0ed71f85110VgnVCM aRCRD Treaty Trader and Treaty Investor Countries Diversity Visa (Visa Lottery) Countries Stop Notario Fraud

18 QuestionsandAnswers

19 Mary Carmen R. Madrid-Crost holds a Master of Laws degree from the George Washington Universitys National Law Center in Washington, D.C., and two degrees from the University of the Philippines: Bachelor of Laws (equivalent to Juris Doctor) and Bachelor of Arts in Economics. Ms. Madrid-Crost is admitted to the New York bar and she is an active member of the national committee on Consumer Protection and Unauthorized Practice of Law of the American Immigration Lawyers Association (AILA). Inspired by her personal experience as an immigrant who started with a working visa, Ms. Madrid-Crost decided to concentrate her practice in immigration law so she can help individuals looking to fulfill their American Dream, as well as assist U.S. employers to become compliant, especially those who need foreign talent. For more than 15 years now, she has continued to help clients throughout the U.S. and abroad. The leadership roles that Ms. Madrid-Crost has taken from her student days to her active participation in community outreach today have contributed to an impeccable reputation as a reliable, trustworthy and competent immigration lawyer. Mary Carmen R. Madrid-Crost, Esq.

20 About the Madrid Crost Law Group The Madrid Crost Law Group is an established law firm fully concentrating in immigration and naturalization law. For more than 15 years, the Madrid Crost Law Group has been committed to delivering the highest quality of immigration compliance solutions and legal defense to a broad spectrum of clientele, individuals as well as business organizations, with issues pertinent to the field of immigration law. All of the law firm attorneys are members of the American Immigration Lawyers Association (AILA). Its principal attorney has taken an active role in AILAs national committee on consumer protection and unauthorized practice of law, and has taken a leadership role in the local committee for workplace enforcement. About the Madrid Crost Law Group The Madrid Crost Law Group is an established law firm fully concentrating in immigration and naturalization law. For more than 15 years, the Madrid Crost Law Group has been committed to delivering the highest quality of immigration compliance solutions and legal defense to a broad spectrum of clientele, individuals as well as business organizations, with issues pertinent to the field of immigration law. All of the law firm attorneys are members of the American Immigration Lawyers Association (AILA). Its principal attorney has taken an active role in AILAs national committee on consumer protection and unauthorized practice of law, and has taken a leadership role in the local committee for workplace enforcement.

21 Ms. De La Rosa completed her Master of Laws degree at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, and her law degree at the Universidad Santa Maria La Antigua in Panama, Republic of Panama. Prior to joining the firm in 2005, Ms. De La Rosa practiced banking and finance laws in Panama as in-house attorney for BAC International Bank. Ms. De la Rosa is proficient in all areas of immigration and nationality laws in the United States. She is fluent in English and Spanish. Karla De La Rosa, Esq. Karla De La Rosa, Esq. Ms. Shin is licensed to practice law in the State of Illinois. She earned her Juris Doctor degree from the Loyola University School of Law. Ms. Shin is a member of the Korean Bar Association and Asian American Bar Association. Prior to joining the firm, Ms. Shin worked as an Immigration Consultant for the CME Group, providing guidance in securing H1B visas and permanent residency to employees and managers. During her law school internship, she has had the opportunity to work with the Cook County Public Guardians Office, Chicago Department of Law, US Attorneys Office, and the United States Department of Justice. Ms. Shin is well-versed in employment-based petitions and HR administration and procedures. She is fluent in English and Korean. Susie Shin, Esq.


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