EB5 Visa Shifting

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The SEC is looking into various EB5-related Securities violations. Also the USCIS has a major incentive in ensuring that the EB5 program works, and continues to produce jobs, as Congress intended it to do. Securities violations are jeopardizing Regional Center operations, the job-creating mission of the EB5 program is in peril, something where USCIS will take action to prevent this from happening. In this way, the enforcement efforts of these two very different agencies are united – SEC and USCIS will continue to work to change practices in the EB5 field to increase compliance with American law.

The EB5 program has seen many obstacles and changes throughout the decades. About 15 years ago the program came to a complete halt for the better part of a decade. Now that the program is running, the USCIS will probably use the traditional tools of law enforcement to effect behavioral changes. USCIS might get ready to issue Notices of Intent to Revoke (NOIRs) to some Regional Centers within the coming few months, such NOIRs will likely be not just for inactivity, but will possibly include issues connected to Securities compliance. USCIS may well also increase reporting requirements by Regional Centers, in addition to enforcing existing reporting requirements. The EB5 field continues to move gradually in the direction of more direct investments, and away from pooled investments such as Regional Centers. For countries with a long history of entrepreneurship, such as China and India, these direct investments may well be the way to go.

Author: Melanie Schmitz Legal Trainee/Rechtsreferendarin BridgehouseLaw Charlotte

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Reinhard von Hennigs