The EB-5 Immigrant Investor “Regional Center” Program (“Program”) will lapse on June 30, 2021 due to the failure of the U.S. Congress to reauthorize or extend it before the expiration date. Because the Senate has adjourned for recess until July 12, 2021, the Program will remain unavailable as no legislation to reauthorize the Program will be passed before that time.
As a result, any investor and family members who do not already have immigrant visas issued by a U.S. Consulate will not be issued immigrant visas to enter the U.S., and any investor and family members whose adjustment of status application has not yet been approved by the United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (“USCIS”) will not be eligible to adjust their status to permanent residency.
The USCIS has not issued recent guidance on what it will do with EB-5 investor’s Form I-526 Petitions or Form I-485 Adjustment of Status Applications that have not been adjudicated. Based on previous sunsets of the Program, the USCIS is likely to hold I-526 Petitions and I-485 Applications in abeyance for some time to wait and see if Congress will reauthorize the program. The U.S. Department of State will no longer be able to issue immigrant visas during this sunset period.
EB-5 investors who have petitioned or applied for immigrant visas based on “Direct” investments – investments into businesses that are not associated with a regional center and rely on direct jobs – remain unaffected by the sunset of the Program.
EB-5 investors who already have valid immigrant visas should still be eligible to enter the U.S. and obtain conditional permanent residence; however, this conclusion is based on USCIS guidance from 2009. It is also expected that USCIS will continue to review and approve Form I-829 Petitions to remove the condition from conditional permanent residents as it has done so in the past.
It is critical to continue to extend, or hopefully make permanent, the Program to protect the eligibility of tens of thousands of investors and family members who have made substantial investments into the U.S., filed I-526 Petitions and are waiting in line for EB-5 visas to become available.
If you have questions about the sunset of the EB-5 Program, contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org and speak with a U.S. immigration attorney in Ho Chi Minh City, Manila, and Taipei.
Copyright 2021. This article is for information purposes only and does not constitute legal advice. This article may be changed with or without notice. The opinions expressed in this article are those of Enterline and Partners only.