Greenberg Traurig presented to potential investors in Vietnam in Hanoi and Ho Chi Minh City on the EB-5 program last week. Kate Kalmykov was in attendance as a guest speaker to discuss the Hot Topics in EB-5 for Vietnamese investors, providing the audience with the most current information on the proposed EB-5 legislation, potential increases in the TEA investment amount and how retrogression for Chinese based applicants impacts third country nationals. Hundreds of investors attended the events, illustrative of the growing interest in the Vietnamese market.
Greenberg Traurig’s Business Immigration & Compliance Practice and three of the group’s attorneys were included in the 2015 Chambers USA Guide. The 2015 guide includes more than 190 Greenberg Traurig attorneys and more than 30 practice areas across various markets in the United States.
According to its website, Chambers and Partners selects attorneys and practices for inclusion based on thousands of interviews with practicing lawyers and clients around the world. The Business Immigration & Compliance Practice received recognition in the Nationwide, District of Columbia and New York markets, earning “Band 1” in District of Columbia for the ninth consecutive year. Immigration attorneys Laura Foote Reiff, Martha Schoonover and Kate Kalmykov were ranked in the Immigration category for their markets and/or nationwide.…
Greenberg Traurig attorneys, Kate Kalmykov and Sylvia Sobczyk, attended a recent immigration-related exhibition in Qatar. As part of Greenberg Traurig’s tour of the Middle East, Kalmykov and Sobczyk were available to discuss immigration related questions with the thousands of participants at the exhibition. Among the various topics discussed, Kalmykov and Sobczyk provided insights on the EB-5 program and how investors can obtain a green card through investment in the United States.
During the past two USCIS Stakeholder’s Meetings on EB-5 issues, EB-5 stakeholders, including Greenberg Traurig, have questioned USCIS on its policy of allowing loans to be a source of an investor’s lawful capital. For many years, USCIS has allowed investors to secure a loan by a relative’s property, so long as that relative gifted the use of the real property as collateral for the loan.
USCIS, however, has recently changed its policy through the course of adjudicating I-526 Petitions and many stakeholders have reported that I-526 Petitions are being denied when the investor does not wholly own the real property used to collateralize a loan. Following its April 22, 2015, stakeholders call, USCIS issued a written summary of the Immigrant Investor Program Office’s (IPO) Deputy Chief’s remarks on the issue. USCIS now is stating that proceeds from a loan may qualify as capital of the investor provided that: (1) the investor is personally and primarily liable for the loan and (2) the value of the collateralized asset actually owned by the investor must meet or exceed the value of the loan. In practice, many stakeholders are reporting Requests for Evidence (RFEs), Notices of Intent to Deny (NOIDs) and denials of petitions stating that where the investor does not personally own the entire property, it cannot be used as the collateral for a loan. In other words, USCIS seems to be stating that the investor may only use loan proceeds as a source of funds if the loan is collateralized by the investor’s property and the investor solely owns the property, i.e. not jointly with a third party such as a parent, sibling or child. USCIS seems to be continuing to approve cases where investor owns the property with his or her spouse. …