The Department of State (DOS) has informed EB-5 stakeholders that retrogression of the EB-5 category in the chargeability area including Vietnam, is imminent; however, DOS is unable to provide specific dates of which priority dates will retrogress at this time, though it did clarify that this is not going to occur in April 2018.
As a matter of process, each month the National Visa Center (NVC) schedules interview appointments for those immigrant visa applications where processing is complete and the Priority Date (PD) is current per the “Final Action Dates for Employment Based Cases” (or Chart A) of the Visa Bulletin. A number of U.S. Consular Posts inform NVC of the dates they are holding interviews, and NVC fills these appointments as they become documentarily qualified. Once the appointment is available, NVC notifies the applicant, petitioner, and attorney of the interview date. In March 2018, NVC scheduled interviews for Consular Posts, including the U.S. Consular Post in Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam, for April of 2018. Almost immediately after scheduling these interviews, NVC issued additional guidance clarifying that, although an interview at the Embassy was scheduled, the visa interview appointment availability was based on the extension of the EB-5 Regional Center Pilot Program. The pilot program was extended through March 23, 2018; however, it is expected that Congress will extend the program through Sept. 30, 2018.
Therefore, as the pilot program is expected to be extended until Sept. 30, 2018, the cut-off dates for the EB-5 visa category will remain “Current” for the month of April for all countries except China. Investors and their dependents should plan to attend the visa interview on the date and time scheduled. GT will continue to monitor the situation and provide updates regarding changes to the Visa Bulletin. Please subscribe to this blog for updates.