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Should I submit my EB-5 application during the government shutdown?

With the government being on shutdown, will I be able to invest and submit my I-526 application?  Should I wait for the government to reopen to invest?

Answers

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    Phuong Le

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    You can submit your petition during the shutdown. USCIS has said it'll accept new I-526 petitions but will not adjudicate them until after the government reopens.

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    Julia Roussinova

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    USCIS is accepting petitions, assuming the regional center program will be extended after Feb. 15.

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    Bernard P Wolfsdorf

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    The USCIS says it is accepting applications during this period, so we are filing and advising clients to file.

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    BoBi Ahn

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    Yes, you should. USCIS is still accepting and adjudicating the applications.

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    Charles Foster

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    There''s no reason why you cannot commence the process of preparing your EB-5 petition on Form I-526. Should the petition be prepared and ready to file, there's no reason why it cannot be filed. Remember that while the government is shut down, a good portion of USCIS is still open, given the fact that their functions are funded through filing fees. Generally speaking, the sooner you file your petition, the faster it will be adjudicated.

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    Stephen Berman

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    USCIS is self-funded and is not affected by the shutdown.

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    Dale Schwartz

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    It might be best to wait until the government opens again. If you file it now, they could say you are not eligible, as there are no numbers available.

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    Vaughan de Kirby

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    Yes, you can file your I-526. However, this is a decision that should be discussed with your investment immigration attorney before any action is taken.

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    Jinhee Wilde

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    You may invest with the regional center while the shutdown is in place, but I would recommend waiting to file the I-526 until the government reopens and the regional center program has been reauthorized by continuing resolution or actual long-term reauthorization. At this time, the regional center program does not exist, as the authorization lapsed on Dec. 21, 2018. The filing will be rejected, as the program does not exist. If you are doing the direct EB-5, you could invest and file without any problem, as the direct EB-5 program is a permanent program and USCIS is an agency that remains open and operational during the shutdown through the filing fees it collects.

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    Lynne Feldman

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    They are still accepting these applications.

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    Marko Issever

    EB-5 Broker Dealer
    Answered on

    This is really a question of personal preference. During the government shutdown, USCIS is accepting EB-5 applications, that is, I-526 filings. They are also issuing receipts acknowledging that they have received your application. That said, they made it very clear that they are not processing any applications. By submitting the application now, you might benefit in certain ways. When the program is extended, if it gets extended with a higher required minimum investment amount, you could theoretically be grandfathered. In addition, if there is an EB-5 project that you are very interested in and do not submit but wait, it could theoretically get filled up by the time the government shutdown is over. To avoid this, you could ask the project managers to let you know when the project is close to getting filled up so you could make a decision then. On the other hand, if you do apply now, and however remote a possibility it might be, if the program does not get renewed and if you are going the regional center route, you will need to have the regional center agree to refund you your money. Similarly, if the program does get renewed but at a higher required minimum investment amount and you do not get grandfathered and you do not want to top off the deficit, then you would become a creditor of the regional center. You will need to feel comfortable that in these remote scenarios, should they occur, the regional center will refund your money back to you. I wish I could give you a simple answer but as you can see the issue is quite complicated and multidimensional. Good luck!

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    A Olusanjo Omoniyi

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    Go ahead and submit your application in spite of the government shutdown.

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    Salvatore Picataggio

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    Around the time the shutdown began nearly a month ago, USCIS stated they would take new I-526 petitions, but hold them until the program resumes. That means you should be able to at least get a receipt notice and priority date, even if the case itself will be held for review, as all other USCIS operations are continuing despite the shutdown.

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