Iranian Investors - Know the Rules
May 19, 2011
The U.S. Iranian Transactions Regulations govern the transfer of funds from Iran into the U.S. and prohibit other activities involving Iranian individuals and companies. Iranian investors (such as EB-5 and E2 visa categories), immigration attorneys and Regional Centers must be knowledgeable of the regulations so that they know when a license is required from the U.S. Treasury Department’s Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC). Our office has experience helping you understand when a license is required and when activities are prohibited. Please note: each specific factual situation must be reviewed before making any determination regarding the regulations.
Actions concerning Iran which are not allowed by U.S. persons (including persons inside the U.S., U.S. Permanent Residents or U.S. Citizens anywhere in the world):
- No personal income can be earned in Iran (either through employment, investment or business).
- No money may be transferred from Iran to the U.S. (without an applicable license).
- No financial services may be provided to Iran (without an applicable license).
- No trade with Iran or an Iranian entity may be undertaken by a U.S. person from anywhere in the world (you may not profit from any transaction with Iran).
- New investments by U.S. persons, including commitments of funds or other assets, loans or any other extensions of credit, located in Iran or in property (including entities) owned or controlled by the Government of Iran are prohibited.
- Third parties may not give permission or engage in activities that permit a third party to do any of the above prohibited activities on their behalf; for example: you may not sell goods to a distributor you know will be selling/distributing the goods in Iran or to an Iranian entity.
Actions concerning Iran which are permitted:
- Travel to Iran is permitted.
- Family remittances to/from Iran are not prohibited provided they are undertaken through the conventional banking system; (note: havaleh transfers are not permitted and can result in prosecution and even prison).
- A U.S. person may receive an inheritance from Iran; however, prior consultation with counsel is suggested.
- Any action for which an individual or company receives a specific or general license from the OFAC is permitted.
For more information, please contact Doreen Edelman at 202.508.3400 or via email