New RCs, New AAO decisions, I-924 checklist, RC project list

A few recent items of note in EB-5-world.

  • USCIS has added a document enticingly titled “EB-5 Adjudication Manual” to the EB-5 section of the Electronic Reading Room for documents released in response to FOIA requests. I assume that the document was supposed to include all the materials used in an April 2014 two-week training course for new Investor Program Office Staff, but unfortunately it only gives us only the outline of that course (PDF page 123-126) and a lot of materials for Day 3 (a fairly uninteresting general introduction day). One bit of pay dirt in this file is a checklist for items to look for in an I-924 filing (PDF page 102). IIUSA, which made the FOIA request, is going back to request the full set of IPO training materials, which should be very useful.
  • I regularly get emails from people who found my Regional Center list and ask me about getting a list of Regional Center projects. My standard response is that such a list does not exist and probably couldn’t exist because it would be so hard to create and administer and so unlikely to be comprehensive enough or disinterested enough to be useful. But the proliferation of Regional Centers, many of which have no activity, intensifies the demand for someone to sort down to a short list of active investment opportunities, and I note that USAdvisors is attempting to meet that demand with the launch of its website So far the site reports listing 306 projects, including from 101 Regional Centers and some direct EB-5 offerings.
  • USCIS continues to upload 2014 AAO decisions on EB-5 petitions. In my opinion the most significant are still the May 27th cases 01 and 02, which set a high bar for the level of “meaningful business activity” and “meaningful concrete action” that must have been undertaken prior to I-526 filing in order for funds to be considered at risk. Grounds for upholding denial in this case include the fact that the initial I-526 didn’t include documentary evidence of commitments for 100% of the funds (in addition to the petitioner’s) needed to fill out the capital stack (evidence submitted in response to RFE was not accepted as supporting eligibility at the time of filing), and the fact that the petition showed that the NCE had entered into service contracts but not that performance under those contracts had already occurred. USCIS seems to be taking an unreasonably hard line. Long processing times and use of escrow can mean that an investor files I-526 at least year before the NCE can expect to use the EB-5 funds. If the investment actually — as the EB-5 program intends — has a substantial role in launching the NCE’s new job-creating activities, then I-526s will naturally be filed at an early stage in business development before all details are confirmed, and the NCE will inevitably have limited activities prior to I-526 filing.

Additions to the USCIS Regional Center List, 6/10/2014 to 6/24/2014


About Suzanne (
Suzanne Lazicki is a business plan writer, EB-5 expert, and founder of Lucid Professional Writing. Contact me at (626) 660-4030.

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