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When is a regional center required to file an amendment?

Can a regional center administer a project outside of its designated geographic area and industries without filing an amendment? When is a regional center required to file an amendment?

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    Fredrick W Voigtmann

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    The situation you described does not require the regional center to amend its USCIS designation. However, if the regional center wishes to benefit from the deference that USCIS will extend to an amendment request with an exemplar or actual project, then an amendment must be filed.

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    Salvatore Picataggio

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    According to the most recent (2013) policy memo issued by USCIS, you may be able to amend a regional center in this manner through the first I-526 filings for that project. Otherwise, a traditional amendment can be used to obtain approval of the changes before filing I-526 petitions.

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    John J Downey

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    The rules on this have changed somewhat in the past few years and USCIS has not been clear on the issue. Usually they state that they will adjudicate on a case by case basis. Seek an attorney well-versed in EB-5 procedures.

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    Ed Beshara

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    Based upon current EB-5 immigration policies, the expansion of regional center geography can be requested at the time of filing the I-526 petition and an amendment does not have to be filed requesting the expansion of geography. In addition, the regional center can also file an amendment to expand the geography.

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    Oliver Huiyue Qiu

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    The name of a regional center says it all. It has to be within a particular region, usually a Targeted Employment Area (TEA). A project that falls out of the designated area cannot get the same treatment as a regional center project - i.e. counting indirect jobs. In order to administer a project outside of its designated geographic area, the first step is to obtain a new TEA designation. USCIS most likely will deem the addition of a new area as material change; therefore it would be prudent to file an amendment. In lieu of an amendment, you may opt to file an exemplar I-526. This also applies when an additional industry is added.

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    Robert Cornish

    Securities Attorney
    Answered on

    The question in response is why the regional center is administering a non-EB-5 project in the first place? If investor funds are being used for projects outside of the plan, that will need to be disclosed and the appropriate forms amended. On the side of caution, any material change to the use of investors'' funds previously reported to USCIS and in fund offering documents should be disclosed through an appropriate amendment.

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