TARGETED EMPLOYMENT AREA TEA

USCIS defines a targeted employment area (TEA) as an area which, at the time of investment, is a rural area, (not within either a metropolitan statistical area (MSA), as designated by the Office of Management and Budget, or the outer boundary of any city or town having a population of 20,000 or more), or an area within an MSA or the outer boundary of a city or town having a population of 20,000 or more which has experienced unemployment of at least 150% of the national average rate.

If the location of the proposed new business is not a TEA, the investor has the option to gather the relevant publicly available state or federal statistics on their own and submit it with their petition for USCIS to have a new TEA determination made. There is no centralized list of TEAs.