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.
The June 22, 2012 Engagement with the USCIS Chief Economist, John F. Rodgers (not "Rogers") has brought up another issue: May EB-5 project use a portion of the EB-5 funds received for land or building acquisition costs?
Q&A Update dated July 3, 2012 from USCIS which clarifies or supplements certain unclear portions of the teleconference:
The above link contains content regarding hotel or resort development and the effect of "visitor spending" and how to calculate jobs for a hotel project and acquiring real estate and its impact on jobs creation.
[Q] I would like to invest $ 500,000 and get the conditional green card. I have 2 questions I didn't find in any Faqs:
1- when I got the conditional green card for my investment, could I get hired by a US employer and do another kind of job? Example: I invest in a *** Resort project, I get my conditional green card and my SSN, after that can I be an employee of Wells Fargo and work for them?
2- when is my investment "due"? When can I get my money back? After i got my unconditional green card?
1. Being an EB-5 investor does not prohibit you from working for another US employer or staring another business.
2. The EB-5 project may have its own requirement, but generally speaking, there is no prohibition against an EB-5 investor getting his or her money back after getting I-829 approved. However, most EB-5 project requires a loan of at least 5 years for various reasons.
We listened in on the teleconference, and basically, their new policy is as follows:
Links where you can find info on this new policy being implemented immediately:
See below from a recent BIA decision regarding aged-out children under CSPA.
In summary, we conclude that an alien may satisfy the “sought to acquire”
provision of section 203(h)(1)(A) of the Act by properly filing the application
for adjustment of status with the DHS. Additionally, the alien may meet the
requirement by establishing, through persuasive evidence, that an application
he or she submitted to the appropriate agency was rejected for a procedural
or technical reason or that there were other extraordinary circumstances,
particularly those where the failure to timely file was due to circumstances
beyond the alien’s control.
DOS interprets it as a payment of IV Fee bill within one year. See:
This is no hype. Our experience in this field convinces us that it's very important for a RC-based EB-5 Project principals to get the Jobs Impact Study reviewed by a knowledgeable EB-5 attorney who has a decent working knowledge of the EB-5 law. In our opinion, it's not enough to just have a competent economist review the Jobs Impact Study because often the economist does not have a good working knowledge of the subtle different requirements USCIS imposes on the Jobs Impact Study based on their interpretations of the EB-5 requirements. This is a not a knock against economists because the way USCIS views the job-creation requirement under EB-5 law differs from the normal way economists calculates jobs.
Engagement with Director Mayorkas and USCIS Economists
Friday, June 22, 2012, 3:00 pm – 4:30 pm (Eastern)
Tomich Conference Center
111 Massachusetts Ave, NW
Washington, DC 20529
See the below link for the full announcement and how to participate:
At this EB-5 Engagement, recently-hired USCIS economists will probably be answering many questions from EB-5 stakeholders and other economists in private practice about how USCIS believes the jobs should be counted.
[Q] Can I apply for a regional center designation in an area where there already are several approved regional centers?
Yes, there is no limit to the number of regional centers USCIS can approve within a state or city. Actually, in our opinion, USCIS should set a limit on the number of regional centers they can approve every year, due to budget and staff constaints.
The bottom line is this. There is some chance that this Program may be permanently authorized, but in all likelihood, the Program will be extended 3 years. When? Probably one or two weeks before the sunset deadline date of September 30, 2012.
If we were a betting man, we would bet as follows:
Extension of 3 years: 70%
Extension of 2 years: 10%
Made permanent: 20%
Our attitude on this is: Make it permanent or get rid of it. The Congress should make it permanent, so that they don't have to keep wasting time extending it. Don't they have more important things to do? Oh yeah, winning the election.
Written by: Stephen Yale-Loehr, Robert C. Divine, and Sonia Sujanani. Click the below link to read this educational article in its entirety.
* Posted here at the request of Stephen Yale-Loehr and upon our determination that the article is helpful.
In response to a Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) request filed by Invest In the USA (IIUSA), the trade association of EB-5 immigrant investor regional centers, U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) delivered 895 pages of heavily redacted I-829 requests for evidence (RFEs) and denials. In total, USCIS released parts of 167 I-829 RFEs and denials ranging from 2008 to early 2011. Most of the responses are from 2009 . . .
Over one year ago, USCIS promised to develop and upload EB-5 FAQ in its EB-5 link site at www.uscis.gov, but to date, there is no such information. And still, interested people cannot obtain much needed information directly form USCIS itself.
Go here at www.uscis.gov/eb-5centers and see if you notice "EB-5 FAQ" anywhere. Nothing.
No, if you try doing so, your I-526 gets denied. Believe it or not, some inexperienced people set up a non-RC EB-5 project and tried to count indirect jobs, leading to USCIS denials.
Look at the White House's own job creation estimates. "Estimates of Job Creation from the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009," Executive Office of The President Council Of Economic Advisers, May, 2009.
This goes to show you that the job estimates studies being submitted by the EB-5 regional center operators are not different from those that are being submitted by the U.S. government.
What does below mean? I would say 3 years extension for sure and a decent chance at a permanent authorization of the EB-5 Pilot Program.
Leahy Introduces Bipartisan Bill To Permanently Authorize Job-Creating Foreign Investment Program
Bipartisan Bill Will Extend EB-5 Program Bringing Jobs, Investment To Vermont
May 24, 2012
WASHINGTON (Thursday, May 24, 2012) – Senator Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) introduced legislation Thursday to make permanent the charter for a successful, job-creating immigrant visa program that has brought economic development and job growth to Vermont since 1997.
Note however that USCIS' position or counter-argument to the underlying main argument of the below article would be that their new position is not a change in the rule-making but a clarification, and therefore, they are not in violation of the APA. Some cynical EB-5 practitioners have suggested that the tactic of USCIS is to intentionally make the EB-5 policies unclear so that people will have a hard time suing and winning federal lawsuits filed against USCIS. Not a bad idea. :)