EB-5 Immigrant Investor Program

Alert: USCIS is seeking to contact certain individuals who filed Form I-829 so we can schedule a time to collect biometrics information. Please read the following carefully to see if this notice applies to you.

Do you meet the following criteria (see Sections 11031-34 of Public Law 107–273 (PDF))?

  • The Form I-829 petition was filed before Nov. 2, 2002;
  • The Form I-829 petition was based on a Form I-526 that was approved between Jan. 1, 1995 and Aug. 31, 1998; and
  • The Form I-829 petition remains pending with USCIS.

If so, please email USCIS.ImmigrantInvestorProgram@uscis.dhs.gov with subject line “Public Law 107-273 Form I-829 Petition.”

In your email to us, provide the following information:

  • Your legal name;
  • Your physical address;
  • Telephone number(s) where you can be reached; and
  • The receipt number of the Form I-829 that is pending with USCIS.

USCIS will use this information to contact you and schedule biometrics collection for your Form I-829 at a local Application Support Center.

Again, we need to contact you only if all three of the criteria listed at the top of this notice apply to you. If only one or two of the criteria apply, then we do not need to contact you.

Alert: On June 22, 2021, the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California, in Behring Regional Center LLC v. Wolf, 20-cv-09263-JSC, vacated the EB-5 Immigrant Investor Program Modernization Final Rule (PDF). While USCIS considers this decision, we will apply the EB-5 regulations that were in effect before the rule was finalized on Nov. 21, 2019, including:

  • No priority date retention based on an approved Form I-526;
  • The required standard minimum investment amount of $1 million and the minimum investment amount for investment in a Targeted Employment Area (TEA) of $500,000;
  • Permitting state designations of high unemployment TEAs; and
  • Prior USCIS procedures for the removal of conditions on permanent residence.

In other words, we are applying the regulations in effect before Nov. 21, 2019, on this website and in the USCIS Policy Manual, Volume 6, Part G, Investors. In addition, we again will accept the April 15, 2019, version of Form I-526, Immigrant Petition by Alien Entrepreneur, because the Nov. 21, 2019, version of the form reflects updates from the now-vacated rule.

Alert: Statutory authorization for the EB-5 Immigrant Investor Regional Center Program ended at midnight on June 30, 2021. This sunset in authorization does not affect EB-5 petitions filed by investors who are not seeking a visa under the Regional Center Program. Due to the sunset in authorization for the Regional Center Program, we will reject the following forms received on or after July 1, 2021:

Until further notice, we will hold (that is, not act on) any pending petition or application of these form types that is dependent on the lapsed statutory authority and was filed before the end of the statutory authorization. At the end of calendar year 2021, unless there is new legislation for regional centers, we will reevaluate whether to keep this hold in place. If we wrote to you about your petition or application on or before June 30, 2021, you should review our written correspondence and respond by the due date (as applicable). Although we cannot review your response right now, we will keep your response for review if circumstances change.

We will still accept and review Form I-829, Petition by Investor to Remove Conditions on Permanent Resident Status, including those filed on or after July 1, 2021.

In addition, we will keep on hold (that is, not act on) any Form I-485 that is based on a Form I-526 for an approved regional center; the Form I-526 must have been filed before the end of the statutory authorization. At the end of calendar year 2021, unless there is new legislation for regional centers, we will reevaluate the hold. We will accept and adjudicate Forms I-765 and I-131 relating to these pending Forms I-485.

We will provide further guidance if circumstances change or further guidance becomes necessary.

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USCIS administers the EB-5 Program. Under this program, investors (and their spouses and unmarried children under 21) are eligible to apply for a Green Card (permanent residence) if they:

  • Make the necessary investment in a commercial enterprise in the United States; and

  • Plan to create or preserve 10 permanent full-time jobs for qualified U.S. workers.

This program is known as EB-5 for the name of the employment-based fifth preference visa that participants receive.

Congress created the EB-5 Program in 1990 to stimulate the U.S. economy through job creation and capital investment by foreign investors. In 1992, Congress created the Immigrant Investor Program, also known as the Regional Center Program, which sets aside EB-5 visas for participants who invest in commercial enterprises associated with regional centers approved by USCIS based on proposals for promoting economic growth.

Explore the links below:

Vacated rule modernizing the EB-5 Immigrant Investor Program

On June 22, 2021, the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California, in Behring Regional Center LLC v. Wolf, 20-cv-09263-JSC, vacated the EB-5 Immigrant Investor Program Modernization Final Rule (PDF).

While USCIS considers this decision, we will apply the EB-5 regulations that were in effect before the rule was finalized on Nov. 21, 2019.

Under the vacated rule published by the U.S. Department of Homeland Security, several changes to the EB-5 Immigrant Investor Program that went into effect Nov. 21, 2019 are no longer in effect.

The new rule modernizes the EB-5 program by:

  • Providing priority date retention to certain EB-5 investors;
  • Increasing the required minimum investment amounts to account for inflation;
  • Reforming certain targeted employment area (TEA) designations;
  • Clarifying USCIS procedures for the removal of conditions on permanent residence; and
  • Making other technical and conforming revisions.

What You Need to Know:

Priority date retention

  • Certain immigrant investors will keep the priority date of a previously approved EB-5 petition when they file a new petition.

Increased minimum investments

  • The standard minimum investment amount has increased to $1.8 million (from $1 million) to account for inflation.
  • The minimum investment in a TEA has increased to $900,000 (from $500,000) to account for inflation.
  • Future adjustments will also be tied to inflation (per the Consumer Price Index for All Urban Consumers, or CPI-U) and occur every 5 years.

Targeted employment area (TEA) designations

  • We will now directly review and determine the designation of high-unemployment TEAs; we will no longer defer to TEA designations made by state and local governments.
  • Specially designated high-unemployment TEAs will now consist of a combination of census tracts that include the tract or contiguous tracts in which the new commercial enterprise is principally doing business, including any or all directly adjacent tracts.
  • Provided they have experienced an average unemployment rate of at least 150% of the national average unemployment rate, TEAs may now include cities and towns with a population of 20,000 or more outside of metropolitan statistical areas.
  • These changes will help direct investment to areas most in need and increase the consistency of how high-unemployment areas are defined in the program.

Clarified procedures for the removal of conditions on permanent residence

  • The new rule specifies when derivative family members (for example, a spouse and children whose immigration status comes from the status of a primary benefit petitioner) who are lawful permanent residents must independently file to remove conditions on their permanent residence;
  • The new rule includes flexibility in interview locations; and
  • The new rule updates the regulations to reflect the current process for issuing Green Cards.
Class Action Member Identification Notice

On Nov. 30, 2018, in the case of Zhang v. USCIS, No. 15-cv-995, the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia certified a class that includes anybody who has a Form I-526, Immigrant Petition by Alien Investor, that was or will be denied on the sole basis of investing loan proceeds that were not secured by their own assets. The court vacated these denials and ordered USCIS to reconsider the petitions.

In May 2019, we sent letters to all petitioners whose petitions we denied and to petitioners who withdrew their I-526 petitions. We wanted to make sure to notify all potential class members. If you received this notification and do not believe that you are a potential class member, please disregard the letter; you do not need to take any further action.

On Jan. 28, 2019, we appealed the court’s decision. On Oct. 27, 2020, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit affirmed the district court’s decision. With this decision, the court certified the class, and we are reopening and adjudicating class member petitions consistent with the court’s decision.

DHS Privacy Notice

AUTHORITIES: The information USCIS is requesting that you provide in your email to USCIS, and the associated evidence, is collected under the Immigration and Nationality Act sections 103 and 203(b)(5) and Title 8 of the Code of Federal Regulations parts 103 and 204.6.

PURPOSE: The primary purpose for providing the requested information in your email is to determine your eligibility as a class member and, if so, to make a determination whether to reconsider your Form I-526 petition.

DISCLOSURE: The information you provide is voluntary. However, failure to provide the requested information, including your Social Security number (if applicable), and any requested evidence, may delay a final decision or result in USCIS being unable to identify you as a potential class member.

ROUTINE USES: DHS may share the information you provide in your email and any additional requested evidence with other Federal, state, local, and foreign government agencies and authorized organizations. DHS follows approved routine uses described in the associated published system of records notices [DHS/USCIS/ICE/CBP-001 Alien File and National File Tracking System of Records, DHS/USCIS-007 Benefits Information System, and DHS/USCIS-018 Immigration Biometric and Background] and the published privacy impact assessments [DHS/USCIS/PIA-016(a) Computer Linked Application Information System and Associated Systems], which you can find at www.dhs.gov/privacy. DHS may also share this information, as appropriate, for law enforcement purposes or in the interest of national security.

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