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What are the benefits of purchasing a Regional Center?

I have an green energy project I''ve been trying to get up and running through EB-5. I need to count indirect jobs but it takes so long to get approved as a Regional Center so I could count them, I don''t have the time. Can I buy a Regional Center? In the long run, is it better to buy a Regional Center or simply work in junction with one?

Answers

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    Reza Rahbaran

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    Your question suggests that time is an issue. If so, the best choice would be to work in collaboration with an established regional center. Your question whether to purchase or work in collaboration with an existing regional center really depends on your long term goals. If you are looking to fund only one project, working with an existing regional center may be the better choice. You may purchase an existing regional center, however you should consult with an EB-5 attorney as this is a complex matter, where structuring the sale will be critical, otherwise USCIS may deny the change of ownership.

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    Julia Roussinova

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    You may enter into a licensing agreement with an established Regional Center if you are looking to fund a single project relatively quickly. Purchasing an existing Regional Center will require filing an amendment and will most likely require more expense and effort.

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    Mahsa Aliaskari

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    There are a few alternatives to establishing a regional center, especially if you only need funding for one project. Acquiring an existing regional center is one, but that would be a change that even with the new policy memo would require an amendment, and amendments can take as long or longer than regional center designation. Another option is to partner with a regional center that works with outside projects. The specifics of each option should be discussed and analyzed with immigration counsel, if you decide to work with an existing regional center it can be very helpful to have an experienced team helping you negotiate the terms of the relationship. We assist our clients in developing the strategies, vetting potential centers and conducting negotiations.

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    Lei Jiang

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    Yes, you can buy or work with a regional center. It''s hard to say which approach is better. Each has its pros and cons. It depends on your needs.

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    Fredrick W Voigtmann

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    The benefits of buying a regional center as opposed to ''renting'' one, is that if you have future projects, then you have the freedom to do those with EB-5 capital and you have control over the process. The downside, of course, is cost. Everyone knows how much it costs and how long it takes to set up a regional center from scratch, so the existing regional centers for sale are going to add a premium on top of that cost, considering the fact that there is real value in avoiding the long processing time at the USCIS. In my opinion, a good strategy is to apply for your new regional center (if you have plans for future projects) AND work with an existing regional center for your current project.

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    Philip H Teplen

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    I think negotiating to work with a regional center is vastly superior in many ways I will be happy to discuss with you.

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    Ed Beshara

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    Your question is common and timely. Our Law Firm has been involved with clients either purchasing or associating with an existing Regional Center. Last week the new policy memorandum was issued and will allow you to immediately prepare an EB-5 compliant project for immediate funding. Please call our office for further discussions.

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    Daniel B Lundy

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    If you are only looking to fund one project, it may make more sense to work with an existing RC than to buy one. Aside from the economic aspects, a change in RC ownership requires the filing of an amendment to the designation. It is not clear at this time if the filing of any amendment, whether or not related to a project, will cause a delay in the adjudication of investor I-526 petitions filed through that RC. In other words, you may not be better off timing wise purchasing a RC than you would be creating one. If your investors are keeping their funds in escrow until I-526 approval, you might not get access to the money any faster. The policy memo released on 5/31 eliminated the need to amend an RC to cover new NAICS codes/target industries, so if there is an RC that covers the location of the project, that RC should have the ability to take it on without an amendment. (The memo also said an amendment is not needed to add territory, but we are not sure yet how this will actually be implemented, so proceed with extreme caution on this front). You should speak to an immigration attorney experienced in representing RCs and developers/projects for specific advice.

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    Rachel Lew

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    I don''t think you can buy a regional center because this will constitute a material change to the business plan and private offering memorandum and other related documents that were submitted to USCIS for regional designation and investors'' I-526 petitions. It might be better to work with one.

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    Jeffrey E Campion

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    Yes, you can purchase one... if they are for sale. Most are very valuable because of the time it takes to get approved and depending on the geography you want. If you can find one that will work with you, it is normally better.

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    Shahzad Q Qadri

    RC Creator
    Answered on

    Purchasing Regional centers is a growing market due the fact that the government is in fact taking so long in approving them. There is no definitive answer as to what is better, purchase vs. collaboration, it really boils down to what you desire to get out of it and amount of control. Purchasing a RC will give you control over the entire RC ensuring that you have no competition etc. However, if you do decide to do that you need to ensure that you conduct proper due diligence as RC purchases are ''stock'' purchases and as such will carry liability with it.

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    BoBi Ahn

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    In view of your time crunch and the need to utilize the indirect hire provision to meet the minimum job creation requirement, sounds like you need to "rent" an existing Regional Center (that fits your business activity and geographic location) to qualify your project under the Regional Center''s umbrella. Technically, you are not buying a Regional Center, but only borrowing their RC designated status to include your project. Make sure you thoroughly vet the RC and their performance history, track record, and EB-5 financing structure, as well as Petition approvals, etc.

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    Stephen Berman

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    People often invest in regional centers, and thereby get approved for EB-5s.

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    Boyd Campbell

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    You may purchase a regional center. Most of them are inactive and would probably welcome an offer.

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