Regional Center EB-5 Program is opening for new applicants
Residency First is delighted to announce that late on Friday, a U.S. federal judge issued a preliminary injunction to stop USCIS from deauthorizing EB-5 Regional Centers under the EB-5 Reform and Integrity Act (“RIA”), and ordering USCIS to accept and process I-526 visa petitions from new applicants.
We are advising all applicants who haven’t done so already, to now engage an immigration attorney and begin working on their Source of Funds documents. We have not been able to submit any new applicants for 1 year, so the industry is expecting a rush of applicants.
Whilst this is an extremely important development for EB-5, we are still waiting for some clarifications from USCIS, particularly the new Form I-526E. We anticipate that this week USCIS will provide guidance as to how the agency will process new I-526 petitions under the Regional Center program, and how the agency will ensure Regional Center compliance with integrity measures laid out in the RIA. We will continue to keep you updated as we receive more news this week.
A summary of the ruling below:
Judge Vince Chhabria of the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California ruled:
USCIS is preliminarily enjoined from treating as deauthorized the previously designated regional centers based on its almost certainly erroneous interpretation of the Integrity Act. Of course, the agency may do whatever is reasonably necessary to ensure that the existing regional centers comply with the Integrity Act, but those centers must presently be permitted to operate within the regime created by the Act. This includes processing new I–526 petitions from immigrants investing through previously authorized regional centers like Behring, just as the agency would do for a newly approved regional center.
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