New EB-5 Reform Act Would Provide EB-5 Backlog Relief for Investors
On November 5, 2019, Senators Graham, Rounds, and Cornyn introduced the Immigrant Investor Program Reform Act which would provide much needed EB-5 backlog relief through advanced parole and work authorization.
New Limited Relief for Investors Stuck in the EB-5 Backlog:
The Act would allow EB-5 applicants who have approved I-526 petitions and who have waited for at least three years since they filed their petitions to (along with their dependents) qualify to travel to the U.S. and obtain work authorization while they waited for visas to become available. This could provide tremendous relief for investors from Mainland China who have estimated visa wait times well above 16 years.
Other major changes this bill would enact include:
- This Act would reauthorize the EB-5 Regional Center Program through September 20, 2025.
- Investors would be able to file their I-485 petition for adjustment of status at the same time they would file their I-526 petition.
- It would make changes to the minimum investment amounts. TEA investments would increase to $1 million and non-TEA investments would increase to just $1.1 million.
- It would set aside 30% visas annually for TEAs (15% or approximately 1,500 of these would go to rural areas and 15% or approximately 1,500 would go to urban distressed areas). Unused TEA visas would roll over annually and be immediately available to next year’s general visa pool.
- Opportunity zones (Urban Distressed Areas) would replace ‘high unemployment’ areas in the TEA definition.
- New increased program integrity reform measures would be introduced.
- A new $50,000 per petition fee from the Department of Homeland Security.
- New limited relief for investors who invested in terminated regional centers
This EB-5 Immigrant Investor Program reform bill must pass the Senate, the House and be signed by the President before it becomes law.
- New York
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