US Immigration News: New Legislation and Changes Coming to the EB-5 Immigrant Investor Program

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What is the EB 5 Program?

The EB 5 Visa was designed for individuals who invest in the US economy by creating jobs for a minimum number of employees, to receive a green card. The EB-5 program, also referred to as the Immigrant Investor Program, is set to sunset on September of 2015. The new bi-partisan imitative led by Senators Patrick and Leahy and Charles Grassley, aims to extend the bill, but does call for some significant changes to the program’s existing guidelines. Read more

Hot Topics in U.S. EB-5 Retrogression and Investor Immigration


Current trending areas that are of note in the U.S. EB-5 investor immigrant program are Chinese retrogression and a crackdown on lawyers accepting commissions from regional centers. Forbes goes into details about the events impacting these hot topics. Read more

Exploring EB-5 Direct investment in Today’s Market

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For too long there has been a prevalent myth surrounding the EB-5 visa. This myth states that single investors or operators whom are looking to start a U.S. business and subsequently earn their green card are likely to take direct investment projects. The myth goes on to extrapolate that larger multi-investor projects, which incorporate the “loan model” are favored by regional centers. While there are grains of truth to this myth, the reality is that there is noting in any of the regulations that would prevent direct investment projects from leveraging multiple investors rather than the previous assumption that only single investors or operators could be on these projects. Read more

H1-B Visa Lottery Applicants up 35% for 2016 Fiscal Year

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This spring, the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) announced the completion of the yearly lottery selection for H-1B non-immigration visa applicants.  This year’s field was comprised of over 230,000 petitions vying for the 65,000 general category visas and/or 20,000 visas reserved for individuals holding a Masters degree or higher.  This figure, for the fiscal year that begins in October 2105, represents a large jump of 35 percent over the number of petitions filed last year and means that only 1 in 3 petitions were selected for adjudicated  this fiscal year. An immigration attorney can clarify any additional questions you may have regarding H-1B visas and the annual cap on H-1B visas.   Read more

Department of Homeland Security’s Deputy Secretary Denies Political Favoritism

US Homeland Security

ABC News reports that Alejandro Mayorkas denies practicing political favoritism. He is currently the Deputy Secretary of the Department of Homeland Security. Even so, Mayorkas needed to defend himself to congress against accusations of political favoritism. Mayorkas is the former director of the controversial United States immigration program EB-5. Employees of the EB-5 program contacted the Inspector General, accusing Mayorkas of favoritism. Read more

Will the USCIS Temporary Hold Affect Your H-1B Visa Application?

Visa Application

Effective May 26, 2015, United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) will place a temporary hold on premium processing for H-1B visa applications. According to USCIS, the hold will last until July 27, 2015 and applies to the Form I-907, Request for Premium Processing Service, for a Form I-129, Petition for a Nonimmigrant Worker, requesting an extension of the stay for an H-1B nonimmigrant. Below are answers to questions you may have regarding the hold. Read more

A New L-1B Guidance Memorandum is Reaching the Implementation Phase

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The new policy memo concerning the L-1B visa category represents welcome changes. Yet the true challenge lies in the actual implementation processes. The category’s guidance is open for comment through May and it will go into effect toward the end of August, 2015. Read more

Unlock the Key to EB 5 Revolution Through Project Disbursement

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The EB 5 Industry has the potential and cash flow to bring great success to many sectors of the US economy. Historically, the industry has primarily focused on entertainment venues, identified by Reid Thomas, but the industry is experiencing a dramatic disbursement into other areas of the EB-5 Industry. As a result, EB 5 investment programs will have an additional need for experienced EB 5 lawyers in Los Angeles and other areas of economic development. Read more

Abandoning Lawful Permanent Resident Status: Procedure & Considerations

U.S. Department of Homeland Security LogoIn February of 2015, US Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) announced that they have developed and released a new and updated Form I-407, Record of Abandonment of Lawful Permanent Resident Status. Although it can seem counter-productive to give up the green card status, there may be situations in which it will be the best option for some people, depending on their individual circumstances. Read more

EB-5 Funds Do, In Fact, Reach Economically Distressed Areas

investmentAccording to the United States Government Accountability Office, an economically distressed area is one with a poverty rate of at least 20 percent, coupled with an unemployment rate that is at least 1.5 times larger than the current national unemployment rate. Since the economic downturn that began with the collapse of the housing market in 2007 and 2008, an unfortunately large number of areas across the country can now qualify as economically distressed areas. Read more