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How do I plan my EB-5 immigration timeline with the I-526 delays?

I submitted my I-526 in Dec. 2015, which means that it will be approved sometime in July 2017. I invested in my own company and made the actual investment in Jan. 2015. By March 2015, I had completed the job creation requirement by hiring 15+ full-time people. All the positions continue to exist. If I am going to get the I-526 approval in 2017, but I will need to wait another 2+ year to remove my conditions on the green card, what happens if I sell or depart the company before the 18 month conditional period? Please help me better understand how to think about timing with the currently long processing times.

Answers

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    Fredrick W Voigtmann

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    You should consult with an experienced EB-5 immigration attorney on this matter. Most of us will tell you that you must sustain your investment and you must create/sustain the 10 full-time jobs until your condition has been removed. If you sustain your investment and show that the jobs were created timely, but for some reason your company had to reduce employment numbers during the conditional period, then you are going to have a battle with USCIS on whether or not your condition can be removed. If you fail to sustain your investment because you closed your business during the conditional period, I think you will be out of luck.

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    Julia Roussinova

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    Under current law, your investment must be sustained and jobs created during the conditional permanent residence period. You will have to establish this at the time of filing of your I-829 petition to remove conditions on your conditional green card.

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    Salvatore Picataggio

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    Your frustration is warranted and understood. It is very hard to plan because of long processing times. Jobs can be counted after the investment is made, even if the processing time becomes much longer.

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    Charles Foster

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    The backlog in adjudications creates the problems you have outlined. If you were to sell your company and not keep the investment at risk and the employment of U.S. workers during the conditional residency stage, your petition to remove conditions could be denied. As always, you should consult experienced immigration counsel.

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    Jinhee Wilde

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    The requirements for getting the conditions removed are whether the investment has been made and is maintained, and whether the requisite jobs were created. If you sell the business or take the investment out before the I-829 is filed, then you will not meet the requirement of still actively maintaining the investment even though you could argue that the jobs were created.

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