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Message from Director Alejandro N. Mayorkas on Proposed Changes to EB-5 Processing

May 19, 2011

As many of you know, in 1990 Congress created the EB-5 Immigrant Investor Program to create jobs and spur investment in the United States. The EB-5 program is available to prospective immigrants who invest in a new commercial enterprise that will create at least 10 full-time jobs in the United States. EB-5 investors may petition to participate either on their own or under a USCIS-designated “Regional Center.” Regional Centers are public or private entities that promote economic growth, regional productivity, job creation and capital investment. We at USCIS accept petitions for interested investors on Form I-526 and applications for Regional Center designation on Form I-924.

Proposals submitted to us under the EB-5 Program are often complex, involving business plans supported by expert analyses evidencing that the EB-5 Program’s legal criteria are met. Over the years, stakeholders have brought to our attention challenges that petitioners have faced in our processing of the often-complex EB-5 proposals.

Our focus on this program, and the input stakeholders have provided, has led us to propose a series of significant improvements to the program. These changes include an accelerated adjudications process, with premium processing; the creation of specialized intake teams to handle the Form I-924 applications, coupled with the applicants’ ability to communicate directly with the specialized intake teams via email; and, the creation of an expert Decision Board to render decisions on the applications and to afford applicants with an in-person or telephonic interview to resolve issues.

We invite your comments about the three significant processing steps we explain in more detail in the proposal. After considering your comments and follow-on discussion, USCIS will develop new processing effectiveness and efficiency in the EB-5 Program. We will accept comments at opefeedback@uscis.dhs.gov for 20 business days, until June 17, 2011. Thank you in advance for your input.

We are committed to making long-term process improvements to ensure that all of us together are fully realizing the EB-5 Program’s goal of creating jobs and growing our economy.  We look forward to your input as we seek to achieve this goal.

Thank you very much. 

Alejandro Mayorkas

Last Reviewed/Updated: 05/19/2011