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What will the total waiting period be for Indian investors in case of a backlog?

I have heard that India-born investors are going to face a backlog soon. Since the I-526 processing time is around two years anyway, is this time also counted toward the waiting time in case of a backlog due to a country quota being exceeded? How can I speed up the process?

Answers

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    Julia Roussinova

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    Your place in the waiting line is determined by the date USCIS receives your I-526 petition, i.e., priority date. The waiting time does start from the date your petition is received and it is advisable to file as early as possible. It is possible to file I-526 with an expedite request if you qualify; however, it is not premium processing and not guaranteed. Discuss with a competent EB-5 immigration attorney.

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    A Olusanjo Omoniyi

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    The waiting period for Indian petitions lately has been averaging close to 20 months.

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    BoBi Ahn

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    Backlog processing times are difficult to predict. Every month the Visa Bulletin is issued by the Department of State to provide an updated waiting list for immigrants who are subject to the quota system, and the processing times vary.

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    Daniel A Zeft

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    The date of filing the I-526 petition determines your place in the queue.

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    Dale Schwartz

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    If you file an EB-5 case soon, I doubt that the backlog, even if one is applied to India, will affect you, as they are taking 14 or so months to approve cases now. If the backlog comes into effect, it will most likely be a one- or two-year backlog, so it will not matter. But the sooner you file, the safer it will be. We have a rush on here in my firm to file a bunch of EB-5 cases ASAP.

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    Salvatore Picataggio

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    The backlog is the time between I-526 approval and when you can file for permanent residency. It is feasible that the longer I-526 processing takes, it may eat up that backlog timeline, but the way it is working for Chinese investors, it is increasing the total timeline for investment. While there is technically a way to request faster processing, it is based on extreme circumstances and subject to the strict discretion of the USCIS officer (that is, it is not really something to rely on). Proper planning and finding a project with a history of success may result in slightly shorter timelines for I-526 processing.

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    Jinhee Wilde

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    If the Indian national visa backlog and then retrogression will follow the previous Chinese and Vietnamese trend, the initial retrogression will be about two years after two consecutive years of visa numbers running out early in the fiscal year and then being replenished in October.

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    Marisa Casablanca

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    We are not sure of the total wait for Indian cases because there are only projections. But, rest assured that the time it takes to adjudicate the petition (two years presently) counts to the waiting time for the visa. The priority date is the date the case is filed.

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    Lynne Feldman

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    The date you filed the I-526 is your priority date. So yes, the wait time does count if there starts to be a backlog.

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    Belma Chinchoy

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    The potential priority date visa backlog for Indian nationals is not known yet. The speculations are that the PD will be sometime in the 2018 (the DOS does not know either).

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    Bernard P Wolfsdorf

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    The Department of State will release unofficial guestimates on Oct. 30, 2018. However, there are concerns based on the surge of applicants in the past year, and the fact that there are only 695 visas available for each country, the 7 percent limit means only about 200 petitioners and their families can immigrate annually. Yes, the waiting time starts from the date you file and if this is your only option, file as soon as possible but expect a wait of several years. Note unlike EB-2 or EB-3, having an EB-5 on file does not give you a basis to extend your H-1B beyond the six-year limit. My hope is that current litigation may change the interpretation to 10,000 petitioners, not about 3,000 petitioners and their families, or that Congress will fix this waiting line challenge.

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    Charles Foster

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    It is impossible to accurately predict the possible backlog for EB-5 investors born in India, but it could be several years. Given the fact that the processing time of the EB-5 petition is, as you indicated, as much as two years anyway, there may not be a significant waiting time. The only way you can speed up the process is by filing your EB-5 petition on Form I-526 as soon as possible.

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