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Greenberg Traurig’s Business Immigration & Compliance practice announced today its role in the formation of The EB-5 Immigration Coalition together with Pathways EB-5, The National Association of Homebuilders and The Real Estate Round Table. The Coalition is a broad-based organization of businesses and trade associations with the shared mission to support and promote the continuation and improvement of the EB-5 Immigrant Investor Program. The EB-5 Regional Center program is set to expire in September of 2015.

According to the Coalition’s website, it will address critical stakeholder needs, both legislatively and administratively, and is supported by trade associations, project companies, regional centers, financial groups and professionals assisting in the EB-5 process. Specific goals of the Coalition include, but are not limited to:

  • Permanent authorization of EB-5 Program, providing investors and businesses with certainty and predictability;
  • Market based immigrant visa numbers tied to demand;
  • Elimination of numerical limitation on individual foreign state;
  • Improved definition of Targeted Employment Area (TEA) designations;
  • Codify the current TEA Designation Authority, which leaves such designations up to the states, which are best equipped to determine local employment needs;
  • Reasonable capital requirements;
  • Assure there are reasonable capital requirements;
  • Respect for economic modeling and job creation calculations;
  • Respect and deference for project preapprovals and deference to prior decisions; and
  • Reasoned enforcement to deter bad actors and enforcement against fraud and abusers.

“We are encouraged by the tremendous and broad support we have received, which speaks to the success of and need for crucial changes to the EB-5 Program,” said Laura Reiff, Co-Chair of Greenberg Traurig’s Immigration Practice and a member of the Coalition’s Board of Directors. “The members of the Coalition believe that the program greatly benefits the economy of the United States with job creation in some of the nation’s most unemployed areas and provides companies with investment options that otherwise may not be available. The Coalition’s goal is to support this program’s continued success and growth in a smart and forward-thinking manner.”

For more information about The EB-5 Immigration Coalition, visit www.eb5coalition.org.

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Photo of Laura Foote Reiff‡ Laura Foote Reiff‡

Laura Foote Reiff is the Co-Managing Shareholder of the Northern Virginia Office. She also Co-Chairs the firm’s Labor & Employment Practice’s International Employment, Immigration & Workforce Strategies group. Laura focuses her practice on business immigration laws and regulations affecting U.S. and foreign companies,

Laura Foote Reiff is the Co-Managing Shareholder of the Northern Virginia Office. She also Co-Chairs the firm’s Labor & Employment Practice’s International Employment, Immigration & Workforce Strategies group. Laura focuses her practice on business immigration laws and regulations affecting U.S. and foreign companies, as well as related employment compliance and legislative issues.

Laura advises corporations on a variety of compliance-related issues, particularly related to Form I-9 eligibility employment verification matters. Laura has been involved in audits and internal investigations and has successfully minimized monetary exposure as well as civil and criminal liabilities on behalf of her clients. She develops immigration compliance strategies and programs for both small and large companies. Laura performs I-9, H-1B and H-2B compliance inspections during routine internal reviews, while performing due diligence (in the context of a merger, acquisition or sale) or while defending a company against a government investigation.

Laura represents many businesses in creating, managing and using “Regional Centers” that can create indirect jobs toward the 10 new U.S. jobs whose creation can give rise to EB-5 permanent residence for investment. She coordinates this work with attorneys practicing in securities law compliance, with economists identifying “targeted employment areas” and projecting indirect job creation, and with licensed securities brokers coordinating offerings. She also represents individual investors in obtaining conditional permanent residence and in removing conditions from permanent residence.

Laura’s practice also consists of managing business immigration matters and providing immigration counsel to address the visa and work authorization needs of U.S. and global personnel including professionals, managers and executives, treaty investors/ traders, essential workers, persons of extraordinary ability, corporate trainees, and students. She is an immigration policy advocacy expert and works on immigration reform policies.