Serving EB-5 investors in USA and Asia, with empathy and specialized skills gained through years of experience, our office focuses on quality rather than quantity.
USCIS' own official website for EB-5 Program, including a list of all designated Regional Centers, is located at:
On Feb. 26, 2014, after almost one year from the last EB-5 stakeholders meeting, USCIS held an EB-5 Stakeholders Teleconference with the new EB-5 Program Director, Nicholas Corlucci. Some other professionals have already aptly summarized the contents of the Teleconference per below.
U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) invites you to take part in a teleconference on Wednesday, February 26, 2014 from 1:30 p.m. – 3:00 p.m. (Eastern) to discuss the EB-5 Immigrant Investor Program.
Let me quickly job down my personal take on the current status of EB-5 Program.
The best article I found on the web explaining the Chinese EB-5 visa numbers retrogression is:
Written by another US immigration attorney, Julia Park, not affiliated with our office in any way. Good article.
Retrogression for China may take place in 2014 for several months to 1 year. Essentially, this means the time it takes for an average Chinese EB-5 investor will increase significantly. It would not surprise me if it takes 3 years or more for Chinese EB-5 investor to obtain a conditional green card. This development will have all kinds of consequences.
1. Do not be surprised if Chinese EB-5 IV numbers become back-logged next year.
2. Expect long delays in adjudication of I-526s and I-829s until EB-5 cases are transferred to the newly-created EB-5 Program Office in Washington, D.C. Currently, I-924 Regional Center applications are sent and adjudicated at the Washington, D.C. Office, but I-526 and I-829 cases are stuck at CSC. This delay is causing the demand for EB-5 cases to go down sharply in some countries other than China. Chinese wealthy applicants have no other options basically, so they are stuck doing EB-5 cases.
We recently provided one-hour of paid consultation to a Texas based company on recommended structuring for additional direct, EB-5 cases and I-829 requirements for an existing EB-5 case.
Currently, there are over 400 RCs. That's way too many. If ever China stops supplying EB-5 cases, then the EB-5 market will be dead. Also, the slow adjudications of I-526s by USCIS is causing a serious problem in attracting EB-5 clients from countries other than China. Chinese investors are still forced to proceed with EB-5 cases mainly because all other immigration classifications are even slower than the EB-5 route.
We recently helped two Asian investors based in one of South East Asian countries obtain I-526 approvals and Immigrant Visas. They will probably immigrate to California soon.
Although more and more RCs are being approved, with hypothetical or actual project approvals, I-526s are taking very long time. When will the promised transfer from CSC to the already-created Washington DC EB-5 Office occur? No one knows. China still appears to provide close to 90% of all EB-5 cases, meaning, without Chinese cases, the EB-5 area is dead. Perhaps this adjudication delay is the only way to avoid Chinese priority date from becoming back-logged.
An increase in the number of RCs has resulted in a greater competition for EB-5 funds, especially from China. However, that is not the biggest problem facing the EB-5 Program these days. A bigger problem is due to a severe slow-down in EB-5 adjudications involving I-526s and I-829s at CSC. A newly-established EB-5 Program Office in Washington, DC supposedly was going to solve this problem -- the EB-5 community is still waiting and wondering, as it always does. Even pre-approvals of actual projects do not appear to lead to quick adjudications of pending I-526s. What gives, and what is the use of doing EB-5 cases if USCIS is not going to adjudicate them quickly?
2013 Annual Report by USCIS Ombudsman's Office. EB-5 info begins at page 33.
According to recent CSC Processing Times Report, they are currently adjudicating I-526s filed in March of 2012 and I-829s filed in May of 2012! This means as of now, you can expect I-526s to be adjudicated in 15 months! May I make a suggestion to Congress? Please shut the EB-5 Program down if USCIS is going to take more than 17 months to adjudicate I-526s and 15 months to adjudicate I-829s. This is unfair to not only RCs but to foreign investors. Also, what is the newly-established EB-5 Program Office in Washington DC doing to resolve this problem?