Form I-924 “Application for Regional Center”

[Note: See my 11/22 post for an update with links to the final forms.]
The bad news is that the new Form I-924, effective Nov. 23, will have a $6230 filing fee. The good news (for regional center applicants more than for lawyers and business writers) is that the Form might actually simplify the proposal and make it less expensive to prepare. I’ve been hesitating to comment on the Form I-924 since it will (we all hope) be significantly revised following another round of comments just provided to USCIS. But based on the 08/04/10 version (posted 9/27/2010 at www.regulations.gov), here are some possible changes to keep in mind:

  1. The current I-924 doesn’t specifically request Targeted Employment Area analysis. USCIS recognizes that an area needs to be a TEA at the time of investment, which may make TEA analysis at other times irrelevant. The Form does ask the applicant to identify the anticipated capital investment threshold ($1 million or $500,000) for each investor, so maybe attorneys will think it advisable to include some unsolicited TEA documentation.
  2. The current I-924 doesn’t request much information on the regional center’s geographic areas and industries, just a map and list of NAICS codes. The “Overall Plan” we used to include with proposals, a lengthy business plan of the target industries within the proposed area, seems no longer necessary. The I-924 only requests details on regional center operations and specific projects, not a profile of the regional center generally. This is a little odd considering that the economic analysis will need demographic and industry data for the regional center area as a whole, and USCIS repeatedly emphasizes that the economic analysis inputs are supposed to come from an underlying business plan. But anyway, the I-924 currently only requests a map and code list.
  3. The current I-924 doesn’t explicitly offer the option to include an exemplar I-526 petition, which would include a Matter of Ho-compliant comprehensive business plan. Instead the I-924 requests an “underlying business plan for the determination of prospective EB-5 job creation through EB-5 investments in [each] industry category.” It appears that this plan for an “actual or exemplar capital investment project” can be fairly simple: just “contain sufficient detail to provide valid and reasoned inputs into the economic forecasting tools and demonstrate that the proposed project is feasible under current market and economic conditions.”

The first round of comments on the 06/2010 version of the I-924 and I-924A and USCIS’s response to the comments can be reviewed at www.reginfo.gov.  Last Friday IIUSA, a trade association for EB-5 of which I am a member, sent off another round of comments on the 9/2010 version. You may thank me for the following entry:

The I-924 Instructions should coordinate with the I-924 Form. Preferably align the numbering between Form and Instructions, but at least be sure that the content matches. On the Form/Instructions posted 9/27, for example, #4 on the Instructions calls for an operational plan to include content that is divided between Part 3 Question 5 and 3 Question 6 on the Form. Instruction #6 doesn’t have any corresponding mention or entries on the Form. Instruction #3 includes several items that don’t coordinate with the Form (ie the paragraph beginning “The application should be supported by a statement from the principal of the regional center…” doesn’t match instructions on Part 3 Question 4 of the Form). This is likely to be confusing for both attorneys and adjudicators as they try to clearly enumerate the required info and ensure it’s all included. Also, for consistency, decide whether to write “Regional Center” (as in the Instructions) or “regional center” (as on the Form).

About Suzanne (www.lucidtext.com)
Suzanne Lazicki is a business plan writer, EB-5 expert, and founder of Lucid Professional Writing.

One Response to Form I-924 “Application for Regional Center”

  1. Pingback: Introducing Form I-924 and I-924A « EB-5 Updates

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