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When does an EB-5 project need to be approved?

I have a relative who is planning to invest $1 million in a hotel project. His daughter will be 21 on June 15, 2016. Does the project need to be approved by USCIS before filing the application? Or can he make the investment now to ensure she will not age out, and then the project can be approved later?

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    Xiaosheng Huang

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    I do not think the daughter can catch up to the date. Generally, the principal applicant shall file the I-526 application with USCIS, and the application generally takes more than 12 months to be approved. Once the application is approved, the applicants are allowed to apply for the green card. I do not think the daughter can obtain the green card if the parent is the principal applicant of the EB-5 visa.

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    Anthony Korda

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    Not only can he file his I-526 before his daughter reaches 21, he should be advised to do so. Once she ''ages out'' she cannot be a part of his petition. Many I-526 petitions are filed without prior approval from USCIS. However, if it is a regional center project, the regional center must be designated before the petition is filed.

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    Barbara Suri

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    The form I-526 petition needs to be approved before filing for the immigrant visa. The child would not age out if under age 21 at the time the immigrant visa is issued to the principal. This relief takes the form of subtracting the time the petition was pending from the child's age; this is the child’s “CSPA age.” This petition has not yet been filed.

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    Salvatore Picataggio

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    The I-526 must be filed before the child turns 21. The project does not need pre-approval. If this is a direct project, there is actually no process for pre-approval of the project. If this is a regional center project, the project does not need pre-approval to begin being the subject of I-526 petitions.

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    John J Downey

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    His best bet is to donate the funds to the daughter and let her be the investor. This way there is no danger of her "aging out."

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    Bernard P Wolfsdorf

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    The project does not have to have an exemplar filing approved to file. Need to file ASAP if aging out. If subject to the Chinese quota, children over 17-18 or even younger may be at risk of aging out if Congress and/or administration do not take steps to protect age-out children.

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    Jinhee Wilde

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    The project does not need to be approved before she turns 21. However, since she will age out in about a month, it is really difficult to say if the I-526 petition could be prepared and filed in that short amount of time. The source of fund tracking for $1 million would be difficult and take time unless your relative is a CEO of a major company that earns $500,000 per year, for example. The business documents on the hotel he intends to buy must be EB-5 compliant, which, unless it is ready to be filed now, will be very difficult to prepare within a month. If the investment is to provide the U.S. schools and opportunities thereafter for the daughter, then it would be best if they gift the funds to the daughter and have her be the main/principal investor for her own case. If not, all other people in the family, except for her, would be immigrating and they will have to find another avenue for immigration for the daughter.

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    Vaughan de Kirby

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    No, the approval of a direct investment does not need to be approved before the application is filed. However, where the daughter is born is very important. I recommend you immediately consult with your investment immigration attorney.

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    Raymond Lahoud

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    You must file before the child reaches 21, or you run the risk of aging out the child.

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