USCIS Published I-526 / I-829 Performance Data By Regional Center, But Accuracy Of Data Called Into Question
On June 19, 2017, USCIS published a list of approvals and denials for Form I-526 [link] and Form I-829 [link] performance based on Regional Center, ranging from January 1, 2014 to May 31, 2017. At first glance this seems to be great news for investors: one can now finally use official government data to find which Regional Centers have the best track record for approval and weigh such data when performing due diligence as to which EB-5 investment is right for him or her. But let us be clear, prospective investors should NOT rely upon the I-526 and I-829 reports in determining where to invest, nor should existing investors now be worried about the performance of their projects simply because of these reports.
USCIS data is often inaccurate. Any immigration practitioner can attest to this pattern when reviewing published processing times, both in the EB-5 and non EB-5 context, that rarely track actual experience. It appears to us that the new I-526/I-829 reports are inaccurate as well. While we cannot explain the specifics in a public forum, upon review of this data and our knowledge of various Regional Center entities’ reputations and clients’ experiences, some of the published figures simply cannot be true.
USCIS’ own disclaimer states that it “makes no claim” that its data is “is complete, timely or accurate.” This is not a great statement for the agency to make in publishing what could be considered determinative data, risking undue influence towards investors’ families in making what could be the most important decision of their lives.
At least one Regional Center owner / operator has publicly condemned the I-526 and I-829 reports, and we expect more to do so in the coming days. Below are excerpts from correspondence sent by CanAm Enterprises’ President and CEO, Tom Rosenfeld, that we think are worth repeating to our readers that risk being influenced by questionable data.
- Green and Spiegel LLP
- U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services
- CanAm Enterprises, LLC
- Matthew T. Galati
- Tom Rosenfeld
- Rhode Island
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