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.
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?
Today, we gave a telephonic consultation to a nice Chinese-American lady living in the East Coast, who called on behalf of her brother in China who wants to do an EB-5 case, to find out what factors she should look for in several potential EB-5 projects she was given by the EB-5 agent company in China. After the consultation, she seemed to be very satisfied with the consultation. It was too bad that I could not speak Mandarin, but luckily her English was good enough for us to communicate.
[HOT] EB-5 and the SEC's elimination of the prohibition on general solicitation for Rule 506 Offerings
What the SEC’s Elimination of the Prohibition on General Solicitation for Rule 506 Offerings means to the EB-5 Community
USCIS has caused a great deal of confusion surrounding construction jobs, mainly because USCIS is not sticking with its own definition of direct vs indirect jobs. In practice, it is almost impossible for any construction jobs to be deemed as "direct" jobs per EB-5 law. Think about it: Under the EB-5 law, "direct" jobs are only those jobs directly employed by the NCE or JCE, but most, if not all, construction jobs are hired by general contractors or sub-contractors. This means all construction jobs are indirect jobs under the EB-5 law. Therefore, under the EB-5 law, it's logically flawed to count any construction jobs as "direct" jobs. However, in our opinion, USCIS seems to be very confused on this issue.
2013/07/03 -- USCIS Policy Guidances governing AAO Precedent/Non-Precedent Decisions and Certification
Interim Policy Memorandum: PM-602-0086 Precedent and Non-Precedent Decisions of the Administrative Appeals Office (AAO)
Note: The above memorandum is interim guidance and therefore effective immediately.
Final date for comments: July 17, 2013
Final Policy Memorandum: PM-602-0087 Certification of Decisions to the Administrative Appeals Office (AAO)
Not very good news. I guess the end of fiscal year means October 30, 2013. Don't know the exact implications of this new, unexpected development in the EB-5 area.
Some issues are:
1. Will BEA changed its mind?
2. How long until RIMS II multipliers become outdated so that USCIS will not find them acceptable?
3. How does this affect job estimates, especially construction jobs?
I was going to write a long article on this topic, but since there are already many articles written on this issue by EB-5 economists, I thought I would just provide a link to one of these articles:
The above article seems to be easy to understand and practical.
The report commissioned by USCIS and USCIS response to the independent report appear below.