+1-800-997-1228
Questions & Answers

What should I do if my EB-5 project gets investigated by the SEC?

My I-526 petition was approved, but recently I was told that the EB-5 project I invested in was under investigation by the SEC. The project is related to my current attorney, who is not only accepting commissions from the project but working as a part of the ownership of the whole project. Should I just wait until my priority date becomes current or should I take any actions in such a situation?

Answers

  • Avatar

    A Olusanjo Omoniyi

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    Unless the entire project is negatively affected and could not proceed further, your investment should be considered safe.

  • Avatar

    Charles Foster

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    If your EB-5 project is investigated by the SEC, there is very little you can do other than to keep abreast through your current attorney or, if in doubt, hire independent counsel to determine the impact of the investigation on your EB-5 investor petition.

  • Avatar

    Barbara Suri

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    Just proceed normally until the SEC contacts you. Then cooperate with them fully in their investigations.

  • Avatar

    Fredrick W Voigtmann

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    SEC investigation is becoming more common, but it could indicate a serious concern. While it is unlikely that the SEC itself will provide you with any information since the investigation is ongoing, you should take some action to protect yourself or at least be advised of the possible financial and immigration consequences should there be a problem with the project. It would make sense for you to retain someone who is not related to the project so you can get an impartial and independent assessment of your situation, your rights, and your obligations.

  • Avatar

    Lynne Feldman

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    Check with the SEC investigator on any impact on you.

  • Avatar

    Vaughan de Kirby

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    You are in a difficult position if your attorney is accepting commissions illegally and you were not properly advised of the conflict created by your attorney's role. I would recommend you immediately speak with a qualified investment immigration attorney, as there is more than just your money at stake. It is the future of your family. Do not wait to look into this matter, as you need answers.

  • Avatar

    Stephen Berman

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    Speak with an investment advisor about this.

  • Avatar

    Jinhee Wilde

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    It is too bad that the attorney did not take care to avoid the conflict of interest. However, it seems from what you are saying, it is that your attorney was taking finders fees and caused the SEC investigation, not because the project is fraudulent. If that is not the case, since your I-526 was approved, I would advise you to hold until your priority date becomes current and file with another lawyer. If there is any allegation of fraud with the project, you may want to get your money back and refile. However, refiling will lose your position in the visa PD line, which may be important if you are already suffering through the retrogression with your country.

  • Avatar

    Bernard P Wolfsdorf

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    For an investor, the main concern should be getting the green card approved and getting their money back. I would start by reaching out directly to your attorney and ask him or her directly. If the answers are not satisfactory, then you may need to seek alternate experienced counsel for a second opinion.

  • Avatar

    Kyle Barella

    Immigration Attorney
    Answered on

    Much depends on the specific facts of this matter. For example, were you aware that the attorney had ownership interest in the project and did you sign a waiver acknowledging that? Regarding your attorney taking a commission: This presents not only an ethical dilemma on the part of your lawyer, but also a potential claim, as he/she is not likely a registered broker-dealer. You need to speak with another attorney in the form of a consultation to go over the facts more in depth and obtain the appropriate advice for moving forward.

Add your comment

Use a Facebook account to add a comment, subject to Facebook's Terms of Service and Privacy Policy. Your Facebook name, photo & other personal information you make public on Facebook will appear with your comment.