We previously reported on the disturbing Request for Evidence (RFE) trend where investors and their attorneys were not receiving RFEs in the mail even though the case status showed that one was issued.  We are now reporting on another trend, this time in the substance of the RFEs and the results from submitting responses, specifically to the RFEs that request additional evidence from third-party money exchangers.

Continue Reading I-526 Practice Tips to Help Avoid RFEs and NOIDs on Third-Party Exchangers

On Nov. 7, 2017, United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) Immigrant Investor Program Office (IPO) held an EB-5 stakeholder program at their New York City field office. GT attorneys Kate Kalmykov and Kristen Ng attended the in-person session.  During the engagement, key members of the IPO addressed: 1) updates from the IPO; 2) priorities for FY 2018; and 3) stakeholder questions from both the phone and the live audience.  Below is a summary of the engagement:

Continue Reading USCIS Holds EB-5 Stakeholder Engagement in New York City Field Office

Investors and their attorneys alike have taken note of a disturbing trend recently:  when USCIS issues a Request for Evidence (RFE), it is oftentimes not received by either party.  Typically, RFEs are mailed in hard copy, and a copy is mailed to the Investor, and a second copy is mailed to the attorney of record.  In almost all cases with I-526 RFEs, the Investor is given 87 days to respond if he or she resides in the United States, and 98 days to respond if he or she resides outside of the United States.   Recently, upon checking the status of a case using the USCIS online portal, the Investor and/or attorney will find that “A Request for Additional Evidence Has Been Mailed,” on a specific date; however, frequently the RFE is never received by either party, including the attorney of record that should receive a copy of all communications from USCIS.  Common protocol is to follow up with USCIS via email, but some have experienced 1) unresponsiveness from USCIS, sometimes taking a several weeks to respond; and 2) the officer responding is unwilling to attach the RFE to the email correspondence without proof the RFE was not delivered, a standard which is impossible to prove given that USCIS mails the RFEs via U.S. Postal Service with no delivery tracking.

Continue Reading I-526 TREND: Delays in Receiving Requests for Evidence