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EB-5 Insights Where Government Policies and Business Realities Converge

Tag Archives: GT

Posted in Department of Homeland Security, EB-5, EB-5 Immigrant Investor Program, EB-5 Program, USCIS

In a recent Law360 article, Jennifer Hermansky, shareholder in Greenberg Traurig’s Philadelphia office, provides insight on how attorneys can prepare clients for unannounced site visits and questions from the government given the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services’ recent efforts to step up compliance checks on the EB-5 investor visa program. She shares a few strategies… Continue Reading

Posted in Department of Homeland Security, EB-5, EB-5 Immigrant Investor Program, EB-5 Industry stakeholder groups, EB-5 Investment, EB-5 Job Creation, EB-5 Legislation, EB-5 Modernization Rule, EB-5 Processing Times, EB-5 Program, EB-5 Project, I-526, I-829, I-924, Uncategorized

After years of delay the Obama-era EB-5 immigration regulations were published on July 24, 2019. You can find a copy of the regulations at this link. You can also find a summary of them here. The regulations only apply to those who file their I-526 Petitions on or after Nov. 21, 2019. Without further ado,… Continue Reading

Posted in China, EB-3, EB-5, Visa, Visa Bulletin

The Department of State (DOS) August 2019 Visa Bulleting shows significant retrogression in employment-based (EB) categories. In the EB-1 category, final action dates retrogress to July 1, 2016, for all countries of chargeability except for India. The cutoff date for India’s EB-1 category remains at Jan. 1, 2015. The EB-2 category retrogresses to July 1,… Continue Reading

Posted in EB-5, Immigrant Visa

Today, the U.S. House of Representatives approved H.R. 1044, the Fairness for High-Skilled Immigrants Act of 2019, that eliminates per-country quotas for all employment-based immigrant visa petitions by a wide, bipartisan vote of 365-65. The bill includes language helpful to the EB-5 program relating to a transition period for implementation, as explained – Fairness for… Continue Reading

Posted in Department of Homeland Security, EB-5, EB-5 Business Plan, EB-5 Immigrant Investor Program, EB-5 Investment, EB-5 Job Creation, EB-5 Legislation, EB-5 Program, Immigration Law, OMB, President Trump's Administration

Today, OMB posted that they have concluded their review of the Obama-era EB-5 regulations. On Jan. 13, 2017, the Department of Homeland Security published a notice of proposed rulemaking to significantly raise minimum investment levels and other programmatic changes to the EB-5 program (see related GT EB-5 Insights post here). It is unclear what specific actions… Continue Reading

Posted in EB-5, EB-5 Immigrant Investor Program, I-526, Immigrant Investor, Immigrant Visa, Immigration Law, India

Is there a mechanism by which my child or children may continue to be eligible for immigrant visas as my dependents based on my approved I-526 petition and if so, how does it work? Yes, the Child Status Protection Act (CSPA) was enacted in order to protect children of petitioners against lengthy petition processing times. Where… Continue Reading

Posted in EB-5, EB-5 Program, India, Retrogression, State Department

The July 2019 Visa Bulletin has been released, and it confirms retrogression for the EB-5 visa category for nationals of India, earlier than many in the industry had anticipated. As of July 1, 2019, only approved Indian EB-5 investors whose EB-5 petitions (I-526 forms) were filed earlier than May 1, 2017, will be able to proceed… Continue Reading

Posted in EB-5, EB-5 Immigrant Investor Program, EB-5 Investment, Form 1-407, Immigrant Investor, Immigrant Visa, USCIS

Starting July 1, 2019, international offices of the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) will no longer accept Form I-407, Record of Abandonment of Lawful Permanent Residence Status. On that date and going forward, all I-407 forms must be sent by mail to the address below. USCIS anticipates that processing of the form, from receipt… Continue Reading

Posted in EB-5, EB-5 Investment

On June 4, 2019, the Kenan Institute released a timely policy brief, “Immigrant Entrepreneurship: An American Success Story,” on the value of highly skilled and motivated foreign entrepreneurs to the U.S. economy. The brief states, “When looking at the founding of the United States’ largest startups…[t]he immigrant-founded startups employ an average of more than 1,200 workers… Continue Reading

Posted in Awards & Recognitions

Ian R. Macdonald, co-chair of Greenberg Traurig LLP’s Immigration & Compliance Practice, as well as Jennifer Hermansky and Courtney B. Noce, shareholders in the practice, were each recognized by the National Law Journal (NLJ) with the 2019 Immigration Trailblazer award. The award recognizes movers and shakers in the legal industry who have made an impact… Continue Reading

Posted in Department of Homeland Security, Immigration, President Trump's Administration, USCIS

Former Virginia Attorney General Ken Cuccinelli has been appointed acting director of USCIS, replacing Acting Director Koumans. Director Koumans replaced Director Cissna on June 3 as acting director. Below is the USCIS release: WASHINGTON— Department of Homeland Security Acting Secretary Kevin McAleenan today announced that Kenneth T. (Ken) Cuccinelli will serve as the new acting director of… Continue Reading

Posted in Department of Homeland Security, Department of State, Visa

Under a new State Department policy, virtually all visa applicants to the United States are now required to submit information about social media accounts they have used in the past five years. Applicants for immigrant and nonimmigrant visas must use the State Department’s Consular Electronic Application Center (CEAC) to complete online forms for nonimmigrant (DS-160)… Continue Reading

Posted in Government Accountability Office (GAO), President Trump's Administration, Uncategorized, USCIS, Visa

On May 31, the Congressional Hispanic Caucus announced, “Following CHC Request, GAO Agrees to Open Investigation into Record-Breaking Immigration Case Backlog at USCIS,” in which Chairman Castro stated the following: My colleagues in the Hispanic Caucus and I look forward to reviewing GAO’s findings. We must ensure that USCIS is meeting its Congressional mandate and… Continue Reading

Posted in USCIS

USCIS Deputy Director Mark Koumans has been appointed acting director following L. Francis Cissna’s departure. Mr. Koumans has experience in Custom Border Protection and the U.S. Foreign Service. Prior to his exit from USCIS, former Director L. Francis Cissna released a report highlighting agency programs, workload and accomplishments, in which he states the following: The 2018… Continue Reading

Posted in EB-5, EB-5 Industry stakeholder groups, EB-5 Program, Reform and Reauthorization of the EB-5 Regional Center Program

On May 17, 2019, EB-5 Industry stakeholder groups, led by the EB-5 Investment Coalition, U.S. Chamber of Commerce, The Real Estate Roundtable, IIUSA, Rural Alliance, Real Estate Board of New York, AILA, among others, submitted a joint letter to Senate and House Judiciary Committees leadership in support of principle reforms and reauthorization of the EB-5… Continue Reading

Posted in EB-5, OMB

On May 22, the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) released the bi-annual Spring 2019 Unified Agenda of Regulatory and Deregulatory Actions. As set forth in a Federal Register notice and using the Department of Homeland Security as an example, the Unified Agenda is explained as follows: This regulatory agenda is a semiannual summary of… Continue Reading

Posted in I-526, USCIS

USCIS released a new version of I-526 form on its website on April 23, 2019. Starting June 25, 2019, USCIS will only accept the new version Form I-526 (edition 04/15/19). Until then, investors can use the 05/30/2017 edition. Both editions of Form I-526 are available to download on the USCIS website. There are no substantial… Continue Reading

Posted in China, EB-5, I-526, India, Vietnamese, Visa, Visa Bulletin

The U.S. Department of State just released the updated Visa Bulletin for June 2019. The monthly updated waiting list provides the latest information for foreign nationals who seek to become U.S. permanent residents by applying for immigrant visas at U.S. consulates and embassies abroad or filing adjustment of status applications. The Visa Bulletin for the… Continue Reading

Posted in EB-5, EB-5 Immigrant Investor Program, GT Alert

Congratulations! You have subscribed EB-5 investors, closed your offering, and provided the EB-5 funds to the project. Now what? As a general matter, EB-5 investors are either non-managing members of a limited liability company or limited partners of a limited partnership. In either situation, the EB-5 investor has limited managerial and voting rights, yet does… Continue Reading

Posted in China, EB-5, EB-5 Immigrant Investor Program, India, State Department, Vietnamese, Visa Bulletin

On May 6, 2019, Charles Oppenheim, chief of the U.S. State Department Visa Control and Reporting Division, presented at the IIUSA Conference in Washington, D.C. on the state of visa backlogs for EB-5 immigrant visa applicants. Mr. Oppenheim reported on a number of important issues summarized in this blog. Between approximately Oct. 1, 2018, and… Continue Reading

Posted in EB-5, EB-5 Job Creation, EB-5 Legislation, Legislation

On April 9, 2019, Rep. González-Colón (R-PR-At Large) introduced H.R.2173 – a bill to amend the Immigration and Nationality Act to reserve EB-5 visas each fiscal year for investors in new commercial enterprises in areas where a major disaster has been declared by the president. The bill is not publicly available as of this writing,… Continue Reading

Posted in EB-5, EB-5 Immigrant Investor Program, EB-5 Investment, Uncategorized

In a June 14, 2017 policy alert, USCIS updated its Policy Manual to provide further guidance regarding capital at risk requirements. Pursuant to the most recent Volume 6 of the Policy Manual, USCIS has confirmed and clarified that an EB-5 investor’s funds must sustain his or her investment “at risk” throughout the two-year conditional permanent… Continue Reading

Posted in EB-5, EB-5 Processing Times, Uncategorized

Currently, the average processing time for an I-526 petition ranges from 20.5 to 27 months, as shown in the screenshot from USCIS website below. For cases filed with an receipt date of January 29, 2017 or earlier that remain pending with USCIS, the investors or the attorneys of record can submit an “outside normal processing… Continue Reading