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Is it still advisable for Indian investors with a pending EB-2 application to go for EB-5?

I am on an H1B visa with a green card application (EB-2) in process. The priority date of my EB-2 is in August 2011. I am from India. I am considering EB-5 but I hear there is a four-to-five-year EB-5 backlog for Indians. Is it still advisable to go for EB-5 at this point?

Answers

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    Bernard P Wolfsdorf

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    Tough one with August 2011 priority date. Our calculations are that EB-5 will still be faster.

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    Charles Foster

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    Yes, it's still advisable if you have the funds as an Indian national to file and qualify for an EB-5 petition on Form I-526 and also qualify under the EB-2 preference, given the fact that the waiting period under the quota for beneficiaries of EB-2 visa petitions are subject to a much longer waiting period.

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    Fredrick W Voigtmann

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    It is advisable for Indians to continue to pursue EB-5 petitions. While a four- or five-year waiting period is not out of the question, it is likely that EB-2 and EB-3 waiting periods, even for those with priority dates similar to yours, will be even longer.

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    Julia Roussinova

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    You should consider all possible options if eligible. Have a comprehensive consultation with an experienced EB-5 immigration attorney, as this option is more likely than not going to be faster than EB-2 based on current estimates, assuming the EB-5 regional center program is reauthorized (unless you are considering a direct EB-5 case). However, the longer you wait to file EB-5, the longer the wait will be due to many people having applied ahead of you.

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    A Olusanjo Omoniyi

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    At this point, it is likely that the EB-5 petition will have some advantage on the EB-2 which is currently in process in terms of priority date. This is because the I-526 petitions by Indian nationals are now incurring well over the two-year waiting period, but at least if the I-526 petition is approved, the visa is current. Feel free to pursue the alternatives. However, if you obtain an immigrant visa under either program, you can withdraw the other petition, as you are only eligible for just one immigrant visa.

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    Marko Issever

    EB-5 Broker Dealer
    Answered on

    I wish I had a crystal ball to advise you on this precisely. The only thing I can tell you is that from what we are hearing, the EB-2 for India is moving very slowly now. Although theoretically you should be eligible to get yours approved in a few years, the reality seems to be, at least for the moment, that you might be waiting far longer than you have patience for. EB-5, on the other hand, has no retrogression at the moment for India-born citizens. We are hearing that this year, 2019, by the summer, if the EB-5 applications continue at the rate they are moving, India could experience retrogression, but again nobody knows for sure. If you have the funds, in other words, if you can afford to apply for the EB-5, in order to keep your options open, why wouldn't you? If your I-526 is approved while the EB-2 is still pending and there is still no retrogression with EB-5, you move with that application. If your EB-2 is approved before I-526 approval or before you could apply for the conditional green card under your EB-5 application then you proceed with your EB-2.

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    Belma Chinchoy

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    This is a very individualized decision. Many of our clients are choosing to pursue all of their options; in life, sometimes that is all we can do. Find an immigration attorney you trust and get a proper consult.

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    Stephen Berman

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    It is always a good idea to try everything you possibly can. You never know what will happen with the EB-2.

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    Vaughan de Kirby

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    Yes. I would in fact recommend EB-5, as even with the potential of retrogression you will in all probability see your green card much sooner. I would recommend you discuss this with an experienced investment immigration attorney immediately, as the sooner you file the earlier your priority date.

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    Lynne Feldman

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    Hard to estimate for sure which category will move forward fastest, but you do have the right to apply in multiple categories.

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    Phuong Le

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    If you're considering EB-5 and you're an Indian national, best to do it now rather than later. EB-2s for India are still very much backlogged and Indian EB-5s aren't set to be backlogged until June/July 2009. Provided you can find a project with expedited processing, you may be able to get yours approved and file adjustment of status before then.

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    Dale Schwartz

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    You are a little over two years away from your EB-2 quota number. There is a five-year backlog for regional center EB-5 applicants. But if you form your own business and hire 10 U.S. employees, there is no backlog.

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    Jinhee Wilde

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    This is a question that only you could answer, but I would estimate that EB-2 will take at least 10 years or more to become current even if the visa number progresses linearly, which it does not. There were many months in the past that visa numbers not only stayed without forward movement, but actually went backwards. The retrogression for EB-5, on the other hand, will be approximately five to seven years, according to Charlie Oppenheim, chief of visa number control. Obviously, more people who file EB-5 cases will make that retrogression worse in the future while perhaps reducing the backlog of EB-2 if more people who had EB-2 jump ship, as it were. Only time will tell. However, the longer you wait to file EB-5, the longer retrogression you will have to suffer, as more people will be in queue ahead of you.

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    Salvatore Picataggio

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    Immigrant visa availability for Indian EB-5 applicants has not retrogressed yet, but we do anticipate it later this year. Processing times for I-526 petitions are still averaging two years (unless you go with a project approved for expedited processing) and consulate processing can take several more months. An immigration attorney can help you plan for the various possible timelines facing you.

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    BoBi Ahn

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    The potential backlogs for Indian nationals are difficult to predict, but, since I-526 petitions are taking over two years to adjudicate, plus the potential country backlogs for Indian nationals (may be another couple of years), you should anticipate at least a three- to five-year processing for EB-5.

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