We’re all in this together

This blog focuses on the technicalities of EB-5 for my small audience of industry insiders. Since I do not have a general audience, I do not think very much about messaging. But I realize that in focusing on details, I can tend to focus on the negative.  Particularly with respect to legislation and the regional center reauthorization debate, it’s easy for analysis to get stuck in distinctions and divisions and lose focus on the big picture of what we’re all trying to accomplish and why.

This post takes a step toward rectifying that balance, by stepping back to also look at the big picture of what unites our efforts as we try to make EB-5 work.

Regional Centers and EB-5 investors are in this together

In thinking about specific legislation, it’s easy to focus on details where regional center and EB-5 investor interests may be at odds. Both the Grassley/Leahy bills and the holistic faction bills have historically included a few divisive provisions that attracted just criticism. But, do not conclude from this that regional centers and EB-5 investors are on opposing sides when it comes to EB-5 advocacy.

In fact, the interests of regional centers and EB-5 investors are very closely intertwined, and they depend on legislation that maximizes each other’s chance for success.

EB-5 investors need legislation that keeps the EB-5 program viable for regional centers, because regional centers need to stay in business long enough for investors to complete the immigration process under regional center sponsorship. If regional centers lose authorization, are overburdened with costly regulation, and practically cannot continue to do business, that’s not good for them, and equally not good for investors whose immigration process and capital repayment practically depend on the regional centers staying business.

Regional centers need legislation that keeps the EB-5 program viable for their investors, because that’s the only path forward for investments. It’s not like regional centers have the option, in most cases, to simply return investor funds in case of disappointment. If the regional center honestly did its job and followed all the EB-5 rules, then investor funds are not sitting in a bank account, but rather deployed out in the economy funding job-creating projects. If the U.S. government bails on the EB-5 visa promise to investors, what can regional centers do? No regional center wants to find itself with investors trying to give up and withdraw en masse, especially considering practical limitations. Regional centers do not want to face lawsuits from investors who don’t have anyone else to sue, even if the regional center cannot practically force Congress to honor the visa promise or force investments to exit earlier than allowed by market conditions and investment agreements. For the sake of their own survival, regional centers have incentive to push legislation that helps their investors keep the immigration hope that underwrote the EB-5 investment.

These intertwined interests mean that all sides have valid reasons to be for and against aspects of the Grassley/Leahy bills, and for and against aspects of the holistic reform bills. The divisions among industry groups and compromises over legislation are not as clearcut as I might have implied in previous posts, when I focused on details and tried to set everything out in table form.  Certainly, there cannot be a conspiracy of regional centers against investors or vice versa, considering how interdependent investor and regional center interests really are in practice. “United we stand, divided we fall” is the simple truth when it comes to EB-5 investor and industry interests in reauthorization legislation. Any final legislation will be a compromise with some wins and losses, considering what’s practically possible and allowable by Congress. But I hope that every industry group is working hard to achieve compromise that will balance its own interests with the interests of groups on which it also depends. As an industry, we are truly in this together, and if any negotiators aren’t acting that way already, they must change.

Investors from around the world are in this together

There’s a historical fissure between EB-5 investors from China and other countries over advocacy around the Fairness for High-Skilled Immigrants Act, which naturally divided immigrants from different countries and categories into those who benefit from and those who are hurt by the country cap law. But when it comes to reauthorization legislation, or at least grandfathering for existing EB-5 investors, people from all over the world have every reason unite to preserve the regional center immigration opportunity. The country cap discussion is valid and on-going, but it is separate from and need not derail cooperation to support reauthorization or at least grandfathering. And for the future, investors from other backlogged countries will shortly realize why they need to join the long-standing Chinese effort to push for visa relief.

The country, Congress, and the industry are in this together

Most important, I should re-emphasize the big picture that good EB-5 legislation is not just a win/win for regional centers and investors if it passes and a lose/lose if it fails, but a wonderful benefit to gain and a tragic loss to avoid for the U.S. economy, and for everyone in Congress who has additional jobs and economic activity and tax dollars in their districts thanks to EB-5 investors and investment. It can feel like Congress is against us and has to be begged and wangled, but if so that reflects Congressional ignorance more than fundamentally opposing interests.

Who gains from a program that has injected billions of dollars into the U.S. economy and created tens of thousands of jobs, with no tax-payer cost and indeed positive tax benefit thanks to attracting productive new tax-payers? Everyone. Who loses, if the U.S. government is seen to default on the promise that it used to attract that investment? Everyone. Who loses, if the rug is pulled out from under billions of dollars invested in on-going projects just as the economy is struggling? Everyone. Who should want a continued incentive for foreign investors to bring their entrepreneurial spirit and investment dollars to the U.S.? Everyone.

The real if not the perceived interests of Congress and the country as a whole are on the side of reauthorizing the regional center economic development program. We can rightly worry that Congress is not well-informed about those interests (and thank IIUSA, EB5IC, AAED, AIIA, and anyone else who is working hard now to inform their representatives about what EB-5 involves), but the interest certainly and demonstrably exists. We can call for reauthorization with a pride and confidence rooted in the fact that a healthy EB-5 program truly is a wonderful economic benefit for the country, and to the government that represents us.

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

92 Responses to We’re all in this together

  1. Lucy says:

    Hopeless on reauthorization by 9/30… don’t know what to say but this seems like an endless war.

    • Don’t lose hope yet. I doubt anyone was putting much weight on a legislative vehicle by 9/30, since Congress has not met the 9/30 deadline to fund the government since 2015 at least. But Congress always does pass an appropriations act eventually (May is the latest I’ve seen since I started payment attention, and December is more likely), so that vehicle among others remains a hope.

      • waitingi485 says:

        Jun’2021 -> Sep’2021 -> Dec’2021 -> May’2022 -> ….
        Disheartened to see if this is the implication.

        Why and How many investors/RC’s will survive by then?
        I think the plan is to strategically stage out the investors waiting for years. Once they are gone, restart the process with some new rules and attract new fools (investors)

      • Mark says:

        Susan,

        It’s so hard to see the pain of so many investors and with so much in risk investors deserve peace of mind at least .

        What is the risk here at some point a judge uses the logic that immigration is not a budget issue …and not a valid thing to extend program via CR….?

        Isn’t the recent opinion of parliamentarians is not to use reconciliation for granting residency? Since it goes way beyond budgetary provisions.

        This program is expired isn’t it wise to get clean extension rather than risking all again? Even though painful negotiations have to happen but wise thing to do So that so many investors fate don’t stay hanging forever ?

  2. CO says:

    Thank you Suzanne for the uplifting and hopeful blog. I wish that the vested interests in the industry who did everything to sink the reauthorization last time, on whatever pretext they did could have your vision and clarity. There is a human catastrophe to their actions or inactions, which they chose not to even visualize behind the privilege of right color of the passport as well as their corporate greed.

    They have caused delusions, despondency, utter disappointments and devastated many of us professionally as well as personally. Just like the corporate America and so called academics, who keep the slavery alive even centuries after Lincoln presidency is over and decades after Martin Luther King let so many of us breath with freedom, I am susceptible about the intentions of so many in the EB5 industry. Pardon me, if I can’t agree with your optimism this time around, for a change. I almost always do but I hope and pray that you are 100 % right.

  3. Bhavesh says:

    If I understand this right, the RC program can’t possibly get reauthorized by October 1st, 2021, and that means that the USCIS will start sending out Notices of Intent to Deny to the tens of thousands of Investors who invested in Regional Centers, which will in turn cause a tsunami of withdrawals as well as litigation.
    Any RC program reauthorization that comes in by December 2021 will be too late to reverse the denial of tens of thousands of RC category I-526 petitions, right?
    What’s the use of reauthorization after the pending petitions have already been denied?
    It’s not like investors can retain their Priority date and reinvest in Direct Investment category projects, right?

    • It would make no sense for USCIS to first choose to hold regional center petitions in abeyance pending reauthorization legislation, and then suddenly start denying petitions before reauthorization legislation has had a chance. I don’t expect to see that happen. There’s nothing magical about the date of 10/1/2021, unless it’s a date by which legislative vehicles had already passed that EB-5 missed. But the vehicles didn’t pass yet, so EB-5 didn’t miss them yet, and I don’t know why USCIS wouldn’t keep holding petitions for now.

      • Bhavesh says:

        Hi Suzanne,

        My understanding is that USCIS has so far held the petitions in abeyance as they had the IV numbers available for RC category EB-5 visas at the beginning of the year, and will not be having any numbers available at the beginning of 10/1/2021, which is when they might start sending out notices of intent to deny.
        Would it make sense for USCIS to keep pending petitions in abeyance for a new visa year when there are no visa numbers available for them?
        At least they had visa numbers available at the beginning of this year for RC category EB-5 visas, but they won’t have any visa numbers available for next year as the RC category has already ceased to exist.
        If the USCIS does set a legal precedent of holding petitions in abeyance for a new fiscal year when visa numbers are unavailable, won’t it set everyone on a slippery slope with other stakeholders forcing USCIS to hold petitions in abeyance for visa categories that don’t exist anymore?

        I heard that reauthorization may not happen until December, if that?

        • CO says:

          @Bhavesh

          What you have alluded to is definitely a possibility but are the industry factions not concerned about such scenarios ? Or they think that worse come worse, they will declare bankruptcy and never will have to pay back the investors. Laws and rules are definitely totally in their favor, only thing US loses is the global image but am not sure, how much US cares about that anymore. Especially after the recent geopolitical debacles.

          • Bhavesh says:

            @CO,
            RCs already have the investors’ money, and they have favorable bankruptcy laws and watertight agreements in their pockets, do you really think they’re worried about investors?

            IF USCIS is actually going to hold petitions in abeyance for a visa category that doesn’t exist, can you imagine the lawsuits asking them to do the same for God only knows how many other categories of non-existent immigrant and non-immigrant visa categories? That’s a slippery slope that happens to be a very steep slope, and the optics won’t look good with populist politicians claiming that Biden is favoring the rich while ignoring the poor.

            I personally think that they’re going to send out the notices of intent to deny soon enough, unless they want to be hit with lawsuits from similarly situated immigrants from other visa categories. For politicians, it might be expedient to throw a few thousand rich immigrants under the bus instead of looking bad to voters.

          • Of note: I hear that USCIS has recently responded to investor lawsuits to compel adjudication (mandamus) by reasoning that the regional center program was always extended in the past, and thus that USCIS is right to keep petitions suspended until the program is reauthorized.
            And I don’t see that holding petitions would be politically controversial, since it does not negatively impact other categories or add any positive benefit for EB-5.
            Also, I personally would place good money on any bet that counts on USCIS acting later rather than sooner. Having observed USCIS for over a decade, I struggle to think of a time they ever did something “soon enough,” haha. A batch of I-829 petitions was recently finally adjudicated after having been held in abeyance for 20 years.
            But none of this should lessen the urgency to get the regional center program reauthorized as soon as possible, to avert pending dangers however long they would take to realize. Certainly, I’m sure the many RCs whose agreements were not waterproofed against this unexpected predicament are very anxious.

        • Fcl says:

          Also, one of the risks for uscis is to be sued by investors to have their petitions denied if the program is not soon reuathorized
          Because for most investors having their i526 denied will be the only way to get their money back, according to their contracts (ppm) with regional centers
          And Uscis will likely lose this kind of lawsuits if the program does not exist any more

          • veedster says:

            Some laundromat owners are duying to see the demise of RC EB-5. lol!

          • Announcing a new rule: any comments using social media abbreviations get deleted. Only partly joking! I’m here not on twitter because I like things spelled out. Also in case this was intended as a jab at direct EB-5, note (1) that direct EB-5 does not actually work well for most cleaning establishments due to staffing levels, and (2) that laundromat dogwhistles are so 1920s. Let’s up the tone here.

  4. Saurabh says:

    Damn..you are good and right

  5. Дмитрий Тр. says:

    I want it to be so. But it was the Congress that brought the EB-5 to a barely working state at the beginning of the year. And it was the Congress that stopped the EB-5 on July 1. And it is the Congress that is in no hurry to fix it. They are not interested in our problems. So we are not all in the same place, unfortunately.

  6. Peter says:

    As someone posted with the name AAED in the previos thread:

    “…hopeless…”

    So if its hopeless, stop to donate into hopeless organizations.

    I like your latest post Suzanne and yes we are all together,…

    ….but not at the same table!

    And yes we have to give the fault to organizations like EB5IC, because they have blocked any reform since 6 years and as well a “helpless” AAED as stated in a previous thread.

    It seems to be confirmed, doesn’t matter how much public relations the lobbies are doing, they are only acting in their own interest, and let’s see how the house of cards will fall.

    Non of those organizations have ever asked their members/investors for their opinion. Not even for the show. Nothing.

    If I don’t see any reauthorization I will put money into an own page to warn other people in future and to spread the real investor experience + a nice diagram how everything is connected. And collected donations are for Google Adwords with the public payment slip.

    Important: It will be spread in Chinese and in China, India as well.

  7. Dr.Amit Patel says:

    Hi Suzanne

    We all know re-authorization will surely happen, We will be thankful to you if you can spare sometime and answer few questions by your valuable opinions and answers.

    1. What is the chief problematic demand or hurdle which blocks the re authorization?

    2. Can simple majority in house resolve the issue by voting?

    3. Do you have any suggestion for investors like they should send emails to congressman or senator to request and represent difficulties?

    Regards

    • I suggest that you join an advocacy organization, which can address all these questions for you and suggest action items.

    • CO says:

      @Dr.Amit Patel

      Although minimal but realistic possibility of the program not getting reauthorized. At least for next few months. Demands put forth by the lobbies which brought down the program to screeching halt might be impossible to even consider, let aside accept. Everyone blames the lawmakers but to be fair, the Congress has given many, many opportunities to EB5 industry and they have not done their due diligence to help the program themselves.

      Just like the nation-states promoting anarchy, this anarchy was created by them and now they don’t have the courage to accept the fallout or salvage.

  8. Aaron Grau says:

    This blog post is laudable. I stopped using the phrase “EB5 Industry” long ago and prefer to reference our EB5 eco-system. We depend on one another. When everyone understands that no one will get everything they want, everyone will see they get everything they need.

    • Thank you Aaron! Or at least, some of what they need, which is far better than nothing.

    • Peter says:

      @Aaron Grau

      Thank you Mr. Grau for the introduction of a new marketing slang.

      Lets develop a new interpretation for the EB-5 industry or EB-5 eco system. Lets call it: EB-5 fish-net; the perfect explanation how to catch all fat fishes (investors).

      Of course we are all in the fish-net now. But Mr. Grau, there is no reason to play with the hope and with the emotions of thousands of investors. Not everything is about money. Would you like do to something for the investors?

      According to all information here, EB5IC and AAED is sitting at the table, talking supposedly with Sen. Schumer. Where are you with IIUSA now?

      Your EB-5 eco-system want the money, and we want a quick greencard, not in years!!!!! Why are you not helping us with this problem?

      • I can’t answer for Aaron, but consider that standing out of the way might be the most positive thing IIUSA could do at the moment, if the objective is to give a Schumer bill its best chance to succeed. IIUSA has backed the Grassley/Leahy reauthorization efforts, but since IIUSA wants reauthorization above all, I wouldn’t expect them to stand in the way if EB5IC is ready to run with an alternative that’s not absolutely unacceptable. But we haven’t seen the alternative yet, so not sure whether it is supportable.

        • Peter says:

          Thank you Suzanne.
          Maybe you have a better connection to Mr. Campion, EB5IC, and he makes a statement on your blog. I am sure the entire lobby is following our comments.

          At least its clear that IIUSA is not helpful for us.

          • It looks clear to me that IIUSA is important and helpful. IIUSA is still the public face of the industry, has done enormous work in education in the media and Congress and in building support for the program, and can be significant to reauthorization legislation whether it is carrying the ball or playing defense at any given time.

  9. G says:

    I heard rumors large metropolitan property developers who can’t use EB5 money via the RC program due to not fitting under the existing TEA definition suspect that other developers who have got access to cheap EB5 money participate in some sort of an half-legal operation, basically, a scam, allowing them to build an unfair competitive market advantage by ‘abusing’ the US immigration system via playing with TEA defintions, doing marketing via unlicensed brokers in certain countries etc . Do you agree such naysayers exist and do they have loud voices in Congress, Suzanne?

    • The loudest voice in Congress against every kind of real and also imagined EB-5 abuse is Senator Grassley, as you can see by his webpage. He is still pushing for the regional center program to reauthorized, though. I do not know if Senator Grassley has gotten some input from people in the industry complaining about their industry competitors and requesting changes, or whether the media is his primary source and the reform ideas mainly his ideas plus suggestions from DHS. My impression is that ignorance is more common than informed opposition for Congress generally. The last time there was a committee hearing on EB-5, most speakers didn’t even bother with the topic and took the chance to speak about Dreamers and the Southern border so on instead. An advantage of having active EB-5 investor advocacy groups is that this adds an additional face of EB-5 for Congress to see, and an additional opportunity for education.

  10. Sam Lattof says:

    we know that 90% of the EB5s are through RC. USCIS stop educating the cases since the program lapsed. Little remaining, is there any explanation why the min processing time jump back from 32 months to 42 months?

    • Peter says:

      Even before the lapse the months went up and down 0.5 – 1 month. I checked the page monthly. Consider it as show + trying to block your writ of mandamus against USCIS. Nobody will tell us the truth. As Mr. Grau from IIUSA said: its the EB-5 eco-system. In my opinion a piece of a puzzle to keep your investment as long as possible in the eco-system without getting a greencard in a reasonable time.
      Lets not forget the misleading advertisments of Regional Centers of quick approvals on many websites. The small footprint is missing until today. Quick acting, taking screenshots. We never know for what we need the false advertisment statements.

    • Daniel says:

      The processing times changes without reason (at least for the general public) from 1 to several months. USCIS and RC are friends.. friends go together for dinner and ask for favors like: hey, can you increase the processing time by 12 months for now? (you get my idea).

      The reason is that RC needs the money for several years. I calculated and Regional Centers do everything in their hands to keep our money for at least 15 years (similar to a Bank loan). Why I came to this conclusion?
      At least the contract from my RC says ” investors will receive their money back after ALL investors receive their Green Card and 6 months after their conditional Green Card expires” and the RC will need 1 or 2 years more to ”properly” liquidate the project.
      So let’s say there are 60 or 80 investors which 90% are Chinese (with several years of backlogs) plus several years of your I526 sleeping at USCIS (I say sleeping because E2 can be approved within 15 days if you pay an extra fee but EB5 does not have this option).
      Anyway you got the picture, money will never be back to you in 5 years but 12 to 15 years. You do the math or I can do it for you at your request.
      Anyway I am not Chinese I just want my I526 approved. In my head think that I paid 500k for a Green Card and that is the price of a nice home called USA. If I receive the 500k back in almost 2 decades I can be very grateful and spend it in a car or whatever.

      • Peter says:

        @ Suzanne

        Since you have for everything a chart do you have any statistic of the return of investment?

        Right now it seems to be accurate according his information if I only compare the USCIS statistics + backlogs.

        • There’s no consistent public disclosure of return on investment, so I cannot chart the data sadly. (Some individual RCs are willing to report their track record in this, but I haven’t collected those.) I would note that a large majority of the EB-5 program’s usage has occurred since 2015, and a majority of the users since 2015 haven’t finished the process yet thanks to visa backlogs and other wait times. Thus the population of people theoretically able to exit has been small to date.

      • the1ulikelivecom says:

        There is no logic and accuracy in USCIS processing time. Otherwise, it will not jump 10 Months back in one month. LOOK at these cases applied on 19 Nov. 2021 and got the approvals in a “few” months later [redacted]

        Are they just lucky or this is clear corruption?!

        • the1ulikelivecom says:

          I mean they applied on 19 Nov. 2019

          • William says:

            Hi Suzanne,
            Thanks a lot for what you wrote about eb-5 and it is so informative. You mentioned that the program reauthorization has to have a vehicle to pass along with. Why? 1. If all involved party or stakeholders do recognize its importance and accept the compromise among them, why can the legislature simply pass it alone through hotline just as the way senator Grassley used at any time when the bill is ready? 2. It is true that patience is absolutely needed. However, with the program currently lapsed, the regional center lacks of the fund from the new investors. In other words, the risk to lose money is also increasing if regional center does not have sufficient new fund to cover debt and loss. The longer the program lapsed, the risk bigger to the existing investors, Isn’t it? Not to mention that in order to get back their money, there certainly will be some investors to sue USCIS for long putting their application in abeyance while the program currently is dead. In that case, will USCIS deny or reject all existing I526s or even those with approval I526s but waiting for Visa interview scheduled or pending 485 application? Thanks!

          • I wrote this post hoping to highlight and promote broadbased interests that exist in fact for regional center program reauthorization. However, I cannot say that all parties recognize these interests, or have acted or will act based on those interests. Thus the difficulty in getting legislation past industry and through Congress.

          • Ricardo says:

            I applied on oct 16 2019….still waiting for. I´m from Brazil.

        • I just redacted this post to remove receipt numbers because that’s personal info that I don’t want to post. But point taken that faster-than-average processing times exist and the processing times report moves oddly. A few notes on why this is so:
          1. There are official ways to get faster-than-normal processing: expedite due to project characteristics or expedite due to personal circumstances. (https://www.uscis.gov/forms/filing-guidance/how-to-make-an-expedite-request) For example a few frontline doctors battling covid got expedited approvals last year based on national interest, and I understand that.
          2. There’s obviously a management void at IPO at the moment, and processes appear to be not systematic, with resulting disorder that includes disorder in assigning cases.
          3. The processing times report is confusing because the numbers are calculated on a weird system. The low month in the estimated time range represents the median age of recent completions, and the top represents the extreme outlier of recent completions. Completions apparently includes withdrawn as well as approved and denied petitions. So for example the recent I-526 processing times report was skewed down because a large number of people with pending old petitions withdrew their petitions, and there were a relatively large number of denials (which tend to be older than approvals due to more back and forth with RFE and NOID). Those old dates pulled back the median and 93rd percentile, although the age of recently-approved I-526 remains similar to what it was. And when the sample size is very small (as has been the case recently, with only a handful of I-526 completions every week), then the median and 93rd percentile of that sample can jump around a lot from time to time reflecting outsize impact of individual aberrations in a small set, and not necessarily any a large-scale trend.

          • Peter says:

            In normal circumstance there is no chance to get an approval for an EB5 (I-526) petition through expedite request.

            You explained it well. It should be based on national interest or life threatening circumstance (comment from my attorney). But that’s just ridiculous.

            If I would be a doctor, then I wouldn’t take the path through EB5, I would just save the money and take the path for EB-2 National Interest Waiver as long as I am eligible for it.

        • the1ulikelivecom says:

          Suzanne, I understand deleting these receipt numbers because they are personal information, but please note that no one has used expediting. Otherwise, it will appear in the case histories that they accept the expedited request. So are they just lucky?!

          • Maybe luck. Maybe an expedite that doesn’t appear in the individual history (e.g. a project expedite approval can precede I-526 filing). Maybe some corrupt backdoor channel — though apparently a small one, if only a few people found it. If the November 2019 approvals you cited were since June 2021, that could also just be in the normal course of processing. The inventory of direct EB-5 I-526 is so small that I’m seeing November 2019 I-526 assigned already, and the small portion of those I-526 that can be approved without RFE can see approvals already.

            For me, the unfairness of non-FIFO processing is an important concern, but not as important as the issue of processing volume reduction. I’d like to see IPO first get adjudicators back to work, at least, so that we’re seeing more than a trickle of completions. Get the process moving, then work on improving order and discipline in the process.

          • the1ulikelivecom says:

            Checking the history of the examples I sent ( I have more), Applications were on 19 or 20 Nov. 2019
            Approvals on
            27 Feb. 2020,
            3 Mar. 2020,
            17 Mar. 2020,
            7 Apr. 2020,
            1 Sep. 2020,
            20 Nov. 2020, and
            17 Mar. 2021
            I’m very intense to find out why because my lawyer has no answer

  11. waitingi485 says:

    EB5 RC’s are one sale. Somehow I am [redacted] over this. I should be seriously concerned otherwise.

    EB5 investors posted this flier
    https://mailchi.mp/eb5investors/want-to-sell-or-buy-a-regional-center?e=82c9786db9

  12. Bhavesh says:

    Hi Suzanne,
    I was just doing some research about what you said about USCIS holding pending I526 visa petitions in abeyance.

    The US Supreme Court has repeatedly held in at least 5 different cases that a government agency is a creature of statute, and any agency action that’s not permitted by statute is void and unlawful. See 5 USC 706 (2)(A) and 5 USC 706 (2)(D).

    I’m wondering WHICH law permits the USCIS to hold pending Regional Center category I-526 visa petitions in abeyance when the Regional Center Pilot program has already expired in June 2021, and if it is actually legal for USCIS to hold petitions in abeyance instead of denying them when the program under which a visa is sought has already expired?

    If the USCIS says that it can lawfully hold petitions in abeyance instead of denying pending petitions when the category for which the petition was filed doesn’t exist, what stops lawyers from filing suit to compel the USCIS to have similar policies for other categories such as TPS and DACA beneficiaries?

    • If your research gives an answer to these questions, please report back. I’d be particularly interested if lawyers are filing new suits for other categories based on the fact that USCIS is in fact holding regional center petitions in abeyance.

      • Bhavesh says:

        I think it won’t be long before lawyers for some of the frustrated investors actually ask this same question to force USCIS to dismiss pending petitions so that investors can reclaim their funds.

        • Veedster says:

          Or persuade and legislate that all EB-5 investors be granted a “blanket amnesty” and green cards without waiting any more. ( Now that they are trying a reconcilliation bill ). Who is frustrated? Waiting for Lazaus … patiently.

          • veedster says:

            But obviously some seem to be more frustrated than RC EB-5 investors, that “no denials have been sent by USCIS”.

          • Bhavesh says:

            @veedster, you’re good with snide remarks and taunts, and it seems that you’re just a member of the RC community.

            Like RC investors, even direct investors are suffering due to the inexplicable delays at the USCIS.

            And contrary to what you assume, direct category investors are not frustrated about the lack of USCIS denials, but about their performance.

            I was asking Suzanne for her opinion about whether USCIS leadership have even thought through their policy of keeping petitions in abeyance, because from a legal perspective, it’s most likely unlawful, and will probably be exploited by some RC investors soon enough.

            From your recent sniping, it’s possible that you didn’t comprehend the enormity of the repercussions for USCIS as a whole, if they chose to act in an unlawful manner.

            Regional Center Investors who understand English very well will probably understand the implications of what I said in the same way Suzanne was able to get the point right away.

            From what I’m reading, some RC investors would prefer to get their money back from RCs instead of staying stuck in a hopeless position created due to rivalry between RC factions.

            We now know that the primary reason why investors are stuck in purgatory was due to the unnecessary internecine rivalry between RC factions, and the only people who really suffered are RC investors who have no hope of getting their Conditional PR status or their money back while their petitions are held in abeyance.

        • Veedster says:

          No need for diarrhetic pros. Your tone suggests otherwise. You told us who you are from day one. Good luck with your Direct EB-5. 90% don’t want it and never will.

          • Peter says:

            Agree! We don’t want direct EB-5.

          • Bhavesh says:

            I’m not here to sell direct investment EB-5 to anyone.
            As a matter of fact, I’m not even the only direct investment category investor on this forum, there are others who’re similarly suffering due to this absurd delay in processing our petitions.
            BTW, you may want to consider taking classes in remedial English.
            Whether someone wants or doesn’t want direct EB-5 is the cause of our angst here, the disappointing service we get from USCIS is.
            Some of my fellow EB-5 visa investors have rightly pointed out, it’s probably the RC operators who are indirectly responsible for influencing USCIS leadership to slow down application processing times to a glacial pace.
            The question here isn’t whether RC employees and owners want Direct Investment category EB-5 visas, the question is, will USCIS start issuing denials because the RC pilot program has expired?
            The Pilot program expired because the RC factions kept kicking the can down the road, and now it’s time to pay the piper. 🙂
            I’m not the one who’s going to decide if the pending petitions will be denied, USCIS is.
            I’m not the one who’s going to sue RCs either.
            So, instead of lashing out at me, why not try to focus our energies on reaching out to politicians to ask them to show some mercy to the long-suffering RC investors?

          • Peter says:

            @Bahvesh

            Who are you? Did you invest 500k? And if yes, since when are you waiting for the green card?

          • Bhavesh is taking a little break, as I don’t have time for tiffs on this blog. So Peter and Veedster can calm down as well, and we’ll move on to more constructive conversation.

    • Fcl says:

      I thing Holding in abeyance is not an action
      It is doing anything
      This what USCIS does best

  13. Peter says:

    Latest news from AAED https://mp.weixin.qq.com/s/va3JSudBkaqfqquxm15M7g

    You can use web browser translation

    • waitingi485 says:

      Adding it to Appropriations Bill.
      Good News is it ?

      • Bhavesh says:

        @waitingi485, can you please share the link?

        • veedster says:

          AAED Legislative Work Update
          Original American Association for Economic Development AAED AAED Yesterday

          September 18, 2021

          The AAED government working group continued to meet with various senator offices over the past week on the EB-5 reform bill. As we push in the last mentioned, the Republican leader McConaughey Members have agreed to EB-5 program for reform Congress must put on 9 Yue 30 government funding bill through the continuation of the day before. However, the issue of raising the US Treasury debt ceiling has brought a certain degree of political uncertainty to the bill. If Congress can not 9 Yue 30 recently passed the appropriations bill continued ( Continuing Resolution ), the following important projects will expire. We understand that Congressman Hoyer , the majority leader of the Democratic House of Representatives, has stated that he will push Congress to pass the appropriation continuation bill in the next 10 days.

          Potentially overdue items

          deadline

          Federal government funding

          2021 Nian 9 Yue 30 Ri

          Road Traffic Authorization Project

          2021 Nian 9 Yue 30 Ri

          Full Food Insurance Project

          2021 Nian 9 Yue 30 Ri

          Federal Child Benefit Program

          2021 Nian 9 Yue 30 Ri

          COVID- related sick leave salary retention program

          2021 Nian 9 Yue 30 Ri

          Lianbang Food Stamp Subsidy Project

          2021 Nian 9 Yue 30 Ri

          Our job is to ensure that measures such as early registration and freezing age are included in the final reform bill. We understand that other stakeholders will meet with Senator Grassley next week . All the actions taken by Congressman Grassley to reform the integrity of the EB-5 project have been included in the current reform plan. AAED will continue to wait for the final language to be published and will continue to urge Grassley to support the program as soon as possible in the next few days .

          We believe that the specific language will be officially released as early as next week. At the same time, we also want to draw your attention to the budget mediation plan ( Reconciliation ) being considered by the House of Representatives that includes language that allows EB-5 applicants to obtain a green card in advance by submitting additional fees. AAED is very encouraged by this progress. Several years ago, AAED lobbied for this initiative. But at the same time we understand that the plan may also include some other costs, and we will share the relevant progress with you as soon as possible.

          We hope to bring you more information about the EB-5 reform as soon as possible .

          AAED Government Working Group

          • Roberto Virga says:

            Whatever CR bill Mitch McConnell is trying to peddle (which, I’m sure, does bupkis about the debt ceiling situation) is completely irrelevant. The only CR that matters is the one that the House passed last night, and (to my knowledge, I might be wrong on this) it didn’t contain an amendment for EB-5 RC re-authorization.

    • veedster says:

      Thank you for the link. I translated it below.

      • veedster says:

        Crickets!

        • Peter says:

          @veedster

          I hope my previous information was constructive enough. I am already afraid to say more, but I guess we have spoken the truth about the EB-5 industry, eco-system, fish-net…

          Anyway… after 10-15 years some of us will have the return of investment otherwise it needs to be claimed a loss in your tax return and “nobody” was hurt.

          Lets see it positive that also Senator Mitch McConnell (wrong translation: McConaughey) wants to support us now.

  14. Anil Kumar says:

    I am about to file I 526 application under direct investment scheme with unsecured loan of $500000.00 in next two weeks.I am not sure whether I have reasonable chance of success considering so much upheaval is taking place to reform and rejuvenate it let alone legal challenges it is likely to face in court of law?

    • Anil, I would say that this decision is too big for message board advice from people who do not know the details of your situation. Any private investment in a business comes with risk, and then there’s the immigration risk with using an unsecured loan as source of funds and investing during a period of flux. My best recommendation for you is to pay advisors to examine your case details for you and give their best estimate of the risk level. Talk with your immigration lawyer first about immigration risks, and especially the unsecured loan issue, and then get a second opinion from another immigration lawyer with direct EB-5 experience. The a securities attorney and/or investment advisor could look at the offering documents and business plan for you and give feedback as to risks on the investment side. And then you’ll have informed basis to assess whether the chance of success looks reasonable to you. I would say generally that I believe that some I-526 filed today based on $500,000 investments will succeed. But what you really need to know is the chances for your specific case. Best of luck!

      • Anil says:

        Hi Suzanne
        Thanks for advice. Do you know an attorney who has first hand experience with positive outcome for a client who used unsecured funds to apply for EB5 visa.

  15. Mohsin says:

    Hi Anil,

    We filed under direct investment category. We looked at different direct investment category offerings, and chose a business where we had full ownership and control ourselves.
    Avoid any business offering where you don’t own and control 100% of the business.
    Do NOT give anyone any control of the business, and keep your business and money in your own hands. Avoid anybody who wants to make you give control of your business to anyone else.
    America is a great country to do business in, and it is easy to do business as long as you follow the rules.
    Avoid any franchises that aren’t in the top 4 franchisors of their respective segment.
    QSR, Auto repairs, grocery stores, food imports and distributorships, etc. should be fine.
    Direct investment category is permanent so we aren’t worried about anything except for the delay in processing.
    Direct investment category is not going to face any legal issues as it is a permanent category, so go ahead and file. The reform issue affects only those who invested with regional centers, not us. 🙂

    • Anil says:

      Hi Mohshin , we have been offered equity share equal to proposed investment of $500000-, therefore can’t control the company at best can have say in running of the company ?what about investment of unsecured funds in light of Zhang & Hagiwars judgement which went in favour of investor who took out unsecured loan ? Has this principle been applied in cases of all those who took out unsecured loan to fund their project after this judgement.Thanks for your response

      • Mohsin says:

        Anil, don’t cede operational or management control to anyone.

        We used a firm that helped us file for Direct Investment category EB5 visa in a business that is completely owned and controlled by us. As regional center reauthorization seems unlikely, it’s possible that we might get our approval soon if visa numbers go unused by regional center investors.

        We chose the Direct investment category EB5 visa after reading about several instances where EB5 visa investors were defrauded. The possibility of fraud doesn’t arise as we’re fully in control of our business. As we anyway needed to hire over 10 employees before we filed our I-526, we’re not worried about meeting the job creation requirement.

        I’d ignore those who try to discourage investors from choosing Direct Investments, as they’ve their own agenda.

        As far as investment of unsecured loan goes, that’s a question you’d need to ask a lawyer to be sure.

  16. Anil says:

    Sorry typo error I meant Mohsin

  17. waitingi485 says:

    LoL

    “still no definitive news on when the EB-5 Regional Center Program will be reauthorized, investors should remain confident”

  18. Peter says:

    How many continuing resolutions are coming?
    Yesterday they have passed this one, but i cant find something for us.

    Click to access BILLS-117hr5305ih.pdf

  19. Lee says:

    Even if RC Program is reauthorized, a BIG problem of slow processing by USCIS will remain. By this time, investors know or should know about this lengthy delay. Therefore, anyone who does EB-5 case should know there are long delays. Investors can’t just blame RCs.

  20. Nin says:

    Hi Suzanne, wish the politicians taking decisions had half the vision you do. We are from India and got approval in April 2021 for a case filed in 2018 when our dependent child was 20.5 years old (6 months pending to 21st birthday). Do we have until April + 6 pending months = October to do consular processing or do we have 1 year for consular processing (“seek to acquire”)?

    Also with the RC program currently suspended, what are the best options for us to keep our child’s age locked in to ensure PR for dependent child whenever that comes?

  21. AS says:

    Does any one know where are we with the reauthorization? AAED and EB5IC have submitted their proposal and we are now waiting for it to get included in upcoming legislations, is that the latest?

  22. kumar says:

    Not a good news. As per CANAM news letter it is anticipated to be reauthorized on Dec 3 rd.

    • veedster says:

      Better late than never… I can wait…….. Lazarus.

    • Roberto Virga says:

      Contrary to the AAED, CanAm predicts instead that the Democrats’ CR bill, which has already cleared the House, will eventually prevail. I agree with this prediction.
      Note that it’s not necessarily ‘on Dec 3rd’, but rather ‘no earlier than Dec 3rd’. There’s always the possibility of additional CRs.

    • Peter says:

      Please provide the link.

      If I follow their latest news nothing is talking about it:

      https://www.canamenterprises.com/eb5-redeployment-insights/

      Right now I believe only AAED news

    • Desi_in_the_queue says:

      Hi Kumar,

      Has CanAm said what happens if there’s a government shutdown?
      Is it guaranteed that the reauthorization of RC will be included in proposed legislation, and if yes, in which bill?
      I don’t think that anyone can guarantee that the RC program will be reauthorized, and think CanAm are being optimistic about passage of a law reauthorizing RC category.
      What if the USCIS denies pending regional center category I526 petitions before reauthorization?

      Desi_in_the_queue

  23. Muhammad Amin says:

    At-least USCIS should process the I-526 which are already approved prior to sunset of June-30 now all approved petitions are also on hold.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.