On July 24th, 2019, the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) published a final rule making significant changes to the EB-5 Immigrant Investors Program. The final rule will go into effect on November 21st, 2019. In order for investors to be grandfathered under the much lower, $500,000 investment amount, they must file their I-526 petitions prior to that date. Therefore, it is imperative that someone who is interested in the EB-5 program to schedule a consultation with Barst’s EB-5 practice group to go over the pros/cons of the program, and whether it’s a good solution for their ultimate U.S. Immigration goals.
The full review can be found at: https://www.federalregister.gov/documents/2019/07/24/2019-15000/eb-5-immigrant-investor-program-modernization.
Highlights of the changes to go into effect under the final rule on November 21st, 2019, include:
- Raising the minimum investment amounts: The standard minimum investment level will increase from $1 million to $1.8 million. The rule also keeps the 50% minimum investment differential between a TEA and a non-TEA, thereby increasing the minimum investment amount in a TEA from $500,000 to $900,000. (The minimum investment amounts will automatically adjust for inflation every five years.)
- Allowing EB-5 petitioners to keep their priority date: When previously approved EB-5 immigrant petitioners need to file a new EB-5 petition, they will generally be able to retain the priority date of the previously approved petition, subject to certain exceptions.
- TEA designation reforms: The Department of Homeland Security (DHS) will eliminate a state’s ability to designate certain geographic and political subdivisions as high-unemployment areas. Rather, DHS would make such designations directly based on revised requirements in the regulation limiting the composition of census tract-based TEAs.
- Clarifying USCIS procedures for removing conditions on permanent residence: Certain derivative family members who are lawful permanent residents must independently file to remove conditions on their permanent residence. The requirement would not apply to those family members who were included in a principal investor’s petition to remove conditions.
For more information on the final rule or the EB-5 Immigrant Investor program in general, contact one of Barst’s EB-5 Practice Team members. Barst’s EB-5 Practice Group is led by Alexander G. Rojas and Emre Ozgu who have each been working with EB-5 investors since the late 1990s.
BarstLLP has been a leading immigration and business law firm in NYC since 1930. Our current team of NYC immigration attorneys averages 20 years of legal experience. Each of our experienced attorneys is dedicated to providing every client with representation that is tailored to their particular needs.