When I consult with foreign investors prior to them doing business or making investments in the United States, I always advise them to make their investments through a U.S. corporate entity.  This not only limits their liabilities, but this strategy can provide benefits for tax and immigration purposes as well. 
 
From a tax perspective, a foreign investor who owns real estate through a U.S. corporate entity and then sells this property is not subject to the mandatory 10% FIRPTA (Foreign Investment in Real Property Tax Act of 1980) tax withholding on the sale.  There is no longer a requirement for the FIRPTA withholding because the seller is actually a U.S. corporate entity.  From an income tax perspective, assuming that the corporate entity is functioning as Real Estate business which is considered an effectively connected business, taxation will be at a graduated rate rather than the flat 30%.
 
Finally, from an estate tax perspective, ownership though a U.S. corporate entity makes is possible to structure the ownership in such a way to reduce the holdings of the senior individual of the family, thereby reducing or eliminating eventual estate tax entirely.  These are some of the reasons why it's clear that foreign investment should be done through a corporate entity.  Ideally, this should be a pass-through entity for tax purposes, such as the Limited Liability Company or the Limited Liability Partnership. 

If you have a foreign national clients who are preparing to invest in real estate in the United States, please make them aware of the benefits of making their investments through a U.S. corporate entity.  As always, please feel free to contact me if you have any questions on this or other legal issues.

If you have a foreign national clients who are preparing to invest in real estate in the United States, please make them aware of the benefits of making their investments through a U.S. corporate entity.  As always, please feel free to contact me if you have any questions on this or other legal issues.