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How can I obtain documents from my EB-5 case filed with a regional center?

I am inquiring regarding my EB-5 I-526 case. Several years ago, the project including my case was filed in the California Service Center, but did not get an adjudication from USCIS. The regional center is using an outside law firm. I want to consult an attorney to file a lawsuit to speed up the process, specifically by filing a mandamus. My question is, can I or my attorney request all the information required for the lawsuit from the regional center and/or the outside law firm? Is it common to request such information, and are regional centers/outside law firms often reluctant to give out the information? As far as I know, all the EB-5 cases were moved to the IPO, so would I have to file my case to the Washington D.C. court, or the California court?

Answers

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    Salvatore Picataggio

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    You may be able to file a Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) request.

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    BoBi Ahn

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    You should have been provided with a full copy of your EB-5 filing by the attorney. If not, you can request a copy from the attorney that filed your I-526. You can also do an FOIA request but that has proven to be a long waiting process.

  • Avatar

    Fredrick W Voigtmann

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    You are entitled to a copy of your file; have your attorney request it. Also, it might be wise to request a copy of your file from USCIS under the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA).

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    Charles Foster

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    The attorney who represented you when you filed your EB-5 investor petition on Form I-526 is still your attorney, and has a fiduciary and ethical duty to you. Such attorney should provide you with all necessary information regarding the status of your case, including a complete copy of your petition upon request. You may wish to hire a separate attorney to file your mandamus petition, which may or may not result in a faster adjudication of your EB-5 petition on Form I-526. Yes, it is very common for the client to request information from their attorney. Remember, the attorney may also represent the regional center under the concept of dual representation, and he or she is also your attorney and has an obligation to represent your interests as well.

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    Bernard P Wolfsdorf

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    A client always has a right to get a copy of their file from their attorney. The regional center may or may not be under an obligation to give you a copy of your file. However, you almost certainly authorized an attorney to file on your behalf and that lawyer should have and should provide a copy of your file upon request. If you cannot find that lawyer you can file a Freedom of Information Act request, but they can take several months to process. If you now want to file a writ of mandamus and sue the federal government you do not need a copy of the file, but you do need to be ready to convince the court that the government has failed to act reasonably in adjudicating your case within the designated time, plus several months leeway. Jurisdiction to file is certainly with the D.C. courts, but you may also have jurisdiction with other courts depending on where you reside, for example.

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    Irina Rostova

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    You should be able to obtain a copy of your filing directly from the law firm that filed it. They are allowed to charge a reasonable fee for copying costs. If that does not work, you can make a FOIA request directly with the government to obtain a copy of your file from them. It takes a few months usually.

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