LexisNexis® Legal Newsroom
USCIS EB-5 Statistics Shows High Approval Rate

USCIS has released the fourth (4 th ) quarter statistics recently for Fiscal Year 2014 for I-526 and I-829 Immigrant Petitions by Alien Entrepreneurs. For I-526, in 2013, a total of 6,346 petitions were received and entered into the case tracking system. 3,699 cases were approved, and 7,131 cases were...

Outline of the Issues Raised from the December 5, 2014 USCIS EB-5 Stakeholder’s Meeting

On December 5, 2014 USCIS held their EB-5 Stakeholder’s Meeting in Washington, DC. This was the first stakeholder’s meeting after President Obama’s November 20 speech relating to his Executive Order. Interestingly, although the USCIS EB-5 Program Chief Nicholas Colucci stated that the...

Was EB-5 Retrogression Averted by Obama’s Executive Order?

There has been furor about Obama's executive order and of course much has been written, with countless opinions raised. The possibility of Chinese retrogression has been a huge topic in EB-5 since 2012 and with real force from August 2014, mainly because of the many difficulties retrogression will...

SEC Security Fraud Charges Against Assisted Living Facilities —Should EB-5 Practitioners Be Concerned?

Assisted living facilities (ALFs) have always been a popular choice for EB-5 investors. On December 3, 2013, the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) announced securities fraud charges against top executives at an assisted living facility. What is significant about these charges, is that it draws...

EB-5 Job Creation Issues: Regional Center Project vs. Direct Pooled Project in Face of Chinese EB-5 Visa Retrogression

The news of visa retrogression for Mainland China EB-5 investors initially resulted in a flurry of information. The inevitable uncertainties arising from visa retrogression, however, have sparked much speculation and conjecture. Both agents and prospective investors in China remain confused as to whether...

Chinese Retrogression Likely to Be Averted

Live from Las Vegas – EB-5 Investors Magazine Annual Conference Since the onset of the possibility of Chinese Retrogression, it has been a topic of intense interest both to the Investor community as well as to EB5 Stakeholders. The authors have been consistently arguing that the furor over...

Bill Introduced in Congress Would Make EB-5 Program Permanent

Representatives Jared Polis (CO-02) and Mark Amodei (NV-02) today introduced “The American Entrepreneurship and Investment Act of 2015″. The Bill proposed to amend the Immigration and Nationality Act (INA) to reform the EB-5 Immigrant Investor Program, including to make the Pilot (Regional...

Senator Tom Coburn’s Report Irrationally Condemns the EB-5 Program

At the end of January, 2015, US Senator Tom Coburn’s office issued an internal report assessing the mission and performance of the Department of Homeland Security. It is no secret that Senator Tom Coburn, a former Ranking Member of Committee on Homeland Security and Government Affairs, is one of...

Is an Increase of the EB-5 Program's $500,000 Minimum Investment Inevitable?

The burning question on the table when the EB-5 regional center program comes up before Congress for renewal this fall, concerns the likelihood of an increase in the qualifying investment that may be made to the program. Renewal itself is not in doubt, as Congress has extended the regional center program...

Letter to Congress Regarding the EB-5 Program: Is DHS Improperly Overreaching?

by Mona Shah and Lory Rosenberg The upcoming EB-5 Regional Center reauthorization process affords an opportunity to examine and adjust many facets of the EB-5 program, from its structure to aspects of the adjudication process. On April 27, 2015, Mr. Jeh Charles Johnson, the current Secretary of Homeland...

News Excerpt From the June 1, 2015, Bender’s Immigration Bulletin

USCIS Temporarily Suspends Premium Processing for H-1B Extensions | From May 26, 2015 until July 27, 2015, USCIS will suspend premium processing for all H-1B Extension of Stay petitions. During this period, petitioners will not be able to file Form I-907, Request for Premium Processing Service, for...

Outline of the June 4, 2015 USCIS EB-5 Conference Call on Job Creation

On June 4, 2015 USCIS held a conference call on expenses that are includable (or excludable) for job creation. Senior economists from the Immigrant Investor Program discussed the expenses that were includable (or excludable) for purposes of estimating job creation, and answered non-case specific stakeholder...

Bill S.1501 Introduced Today for Reauthorization of the EB-5 Regional Center Program

Senate Judiciary Committee Chairman Charles Grassley (R-Iowa) and Ranking Member Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) have introduced S. 1501 (the “American Job Creation and Investment Promotion Reform Act of 2015”) , which if passed, will reauthorize the EB-5 Regional Center (RC) program for another five...

SEC Brings First Unregistered Broker Charges Based on EB-5 Program

The EB-5 program was designed to create a path to becoming a permanent residence in the U.S. for certain immigrants while facilitating job creation in the United States. Initiated in 1990, the program gives a foreign applicant a path to permanent residency following an investment of $1 million, or $500...

SEC Files Offering Fraud Charges Based in Part on EB-5 Program

The EB-5 program , which promises a path to a permanent green card for those who can invest in this country and create jobs, has been involved in a number of SEC enforcement actions, most recently involving unregistered broker charges. In a case filed this week, however, it was one facet of an affinity...

What the Troubled Chinese Stock Market Could Mean for EB-5

As of late, financial headlines have been dominated by economic turmoil and recent default in Greece. Little attention however has been focused on the sudden financial crisis currently gripping China, the world’s most populous country and second largest economy. Since mid-June, Chinese company...

Implications of the SEC’s Charges Against Unregistered Broker Based on EB-5 Program

[UPDATE: This article was updated to correct the names of the respondents in the described case.] The Securities and Exchange Commission (“SEC”) has further demonstrated its intent to take a more active role in ensuring that participants in the EB-5 program are in compliance with securities...

Mona Shah Takes Part in Roundtable With Chairman Goodlatte EB-5 Investors Conference in Los Angeles

Mona Shah & Associates was a part of the EB-5 Investors conference in Los Angeles this Monday that was heavily attended and included several key players that will be play a large part in determining the future of the EB-5 industry. With the Regional Center program up for renewal on September 30 th...

USCIS Issues Warning Regarding Regional Center Names

Last week, USCIS issued a warning advising that EB-5 regional centers and related commercial enterprises should not contain the words “United States,” “U.S.,” “US” and “Federal” in their names. The concern is that using such names may give the false impression...

USCIS EB-5 Stakeholder Meeting August 13, 2015: Issue Outline

On August 13, 2015, USCIS held one of its frequently scheduled EB-5 Immigrant Investor Program Stakeholder Engagements, but this time from Los Angeles, California. The changed location is part and parcel of the agency’s efforts to assertively engage in states that have directly benefited from the...

SEC Files Another Fraud Action Based on EB-5 Program

The EB-5 program is supposed to provide a path to a permanent green card. The program was designed to create that path for foreign national who invest specified sums in the U.S. that create jobs – a win win for everyone. Unfortunately, in some instances there is no win. The SEC has brought a number...

The September Foreign Exchange Notice Increases Difficulties for Chinese EB-5 Investors

by Mona Shah and Hui Zeng China employs firm currency regulations that are designed to prevent large amounts of currency moving out of the country. Each Chinese citizen can only exchange an equivalent amount of USD 50,000 within one calendar year,[ 1 ] while Chinese companies can exchange yuan for...

EB-5 Funding & Transportation Projects – A Perfect Fit for Jobs, Accessibility and the Environment

Congress created the EB-5 Program in 1990 to benefit the U.S. economy by attracting investments from qualified foreign investors. Under the Program, each investor must prove that at least ten new jobs were created or saved as a result of the EB-5 investment. More than 25 countries, including Australia...

An Insider’s View of the EB-5 Program Extension to September 30, 2016

by Mona Shah & Omar Hakim The Battle to Reform EB-5: After months of vigorous debates, endless negotiations, constant redrafting, and a frenzy of last minute investor filings, it was much ado about nothing! Congress, never known for efficiency, decided to bow into pressure from many within...

EB-5 Program Becomes Examination Priority For Both the SEC and FINRA

Private Placements: Focusing Closely on EB-5 Program It is well-known in the EB-5 community that the Securities Exchange Commission (the “SEC”) is scrutinizing the EB-5 program closer than ever. The SEC and the Financial Industry Regulation Authority (“FINRA”) each formalized...