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September 27 2021

Regional Center Reauthorization Postponed

The latest from Washington, D.C. indicates that the EB-5 Regional Center investor program will probably not be reauthorized until December 3, 2021.  The Regional Center EB-5 program (not the direct EB-5 program) expired on June 30, 2021. 

It was hoped that the Regional Center program would be extended with the Budget on September 30, 2021.  However, due to the federal government debt limit increase inclusion in the Budget bill, it appears that many other matters are being removed from the Budget bill (also called a “continuing resolution”).  It is hoped that the EB-5 Regional Center program extension will be included in the December continuing resolution (as was the case in the past).

So for now, the direct EB-5 program remains the only program for which an EB-5 application can be filed.  Some individuals are preparing EB-5 Regional Center applications now to file as soon as the program is extended/reauthorized.

It appears that the investment amount will remain at $500,000 in a Targeted Employment Area (TEA) (high unemployment or rural area) for now.

As I reported recently, the investment amount was lowered to $500,000 (from $900,000) in a TEA when a court ruled the regulation creating the $900,000 amount was illegally promulgated.  The government has appealed that ruling (note that at least 6 other courts have also made similar rulings about other Trump Administration rules that were created by illegal temporary appointments).

It is anticipated that pending Regional Center I-526s and adjustment applications will remain on hold until the official reauthorization of the program.  EB-5 Regional Center and direct I-829 removal of conditional resident status petitions can still be decided by USCIS.  However, there are currently approximately 11,000 pending I-829s on file.  As there is a law requiring a decision on I-829s within 90 days of filing or interview (and USCIS virtually never interviews I-829 applicants), I often file Mandamus actions in court to compel a decision on I-829s.