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December 2 2016

Continuing Resolution; China; The Trump Election Effect; Processing Time; USCIS Memo

Continuing Resolution

December 9th is days away and we await Congress passing a Continuing Resolution (“CR”) to extend funding of the government along with EB-5 and a few other immigration statutes. It appears the CR will extend the government funding and EB-5 program to April 30th.


The New York Times on November 29th ran a story that China will soon restrict the outflow of large investments by big Chinese firms. The story also reported that “[w]hile Chinese regulators are increasing their scrutiny, they have been reluctant to ban overseas investment outright. Four different regulators issued a joint public statement on Monday through the official Xinhua news agency to emphasize that it was still acceptable for Chinese companies and households to invest overseas” (underlining added). One RC owner with many years of experience with Chinese investors said this was not new. Another RC owner reports that investors are having difficulties transferring funds from China.

Given the government’s desire to raise the minimum EB-5 investment amount, possible increased Chinese restriction on foreign investment, and other uncertainties, now is a good time for investors to make an EB-5 investment and file an I-526 petition. As my father, also an immigration lawyer, used to say, “If you have a way to get a green card, get it, for the laws change and one never knows what the future holds.”

The Trump Election Effect

It is too soon to know how the election will impact EB-5. But one migration agent told me that she was talking to 5 potential Middle Eastern investors, all of whom decided after the election not to proceed. From what I see, there is still strong demand for the EB-5 program. Investors want their petitions and immigration applications completed as fast as possible.

Processing Time

The average processing time for I-526s has dropped from 16.2 months to 14.7 months. For quite some time, I have seen most, but not all I-526s decided in about 14 months.


On November 30th, USCIS issued a long awaited EB-5 Policy Memo. I am studying it. Generally, it does not appear to contain much new policy. TEA rules remain unchanged. I will report more on this soon.