As an update to our previous blog, the EB-5 Regional Center program was not extended by Congress by June 30, 2021. Congress did not pass a law to extend the EB-5 Regional Center program by June 30, 2021, so the Regional Center program has lapsed. USCIS has issued guidance on its website that no new I-924 Applications by Regional Centers can be filed at this time. Likewise, USCIS has stated that no new I-526 Petitions based on an investment sponsored by a Regional Center can be filed during any period of lapse. As expected, USCIS stated that they will hold pending I-924 Applications and I-526 Petitions in abeyance during the lapse period until further notice. Applicants who received a notice from USCIS, such as a Request for Evidence (RFE) or Notice of Intent to Deny (NOID) should follow the instructions on the notice and file any requested documents by the deadlines outlined by USCIS.
Additionally, USCIS will reject Form I-485 Applications based on an approved I-526 Petition associated with a regional center investment. USCIS will not act on any I-485 Application based on an approved I-526 Petition associated with an approved Regional Center unless the Regional Center Program is reauthorized. For applicants with pending I-485 Applications, it is not clear if USCIS will continue to adjudicate any pending Form I-765, Application for Employment Authorization, and Form I-131, Application for Travel Document, that is based on a pending Form I-485 Application.
Stakeholders continue to pressure USCIS and Congress for a legislative proposal that will reauthorize the EB-5 Regional Center program. At this time, it is not known how long the lapse in authorization will last.