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Green and Spiegel - An Immigration Law Firm
  • After a Night of Drama, EB-5 Regional Center Program gets Extension to Mar. 23, 2018

    by Matt Galati | Feb 09, 2018

    February 9, 2018 -- The most recent government shutdown showdown resulted in a brief (several-hour) lapse in the EB-5 Regional Center Program after the last Continuing Resolution expired at midnight. The Washington Post has an excellent hour-by-hour timeline discussing exactly what happened.

    Nevertheless, this morning both houses of Congress passed H.R. 1892, which was signed into law by the President shortly thereafter. Buried within the 250-page legislation was the following provision extending the RC Program, E-Verify, Conrad 30, and Special Immigrant Religious Worker visas:

    SEC. 20101.

    The Continuing Appropriations Act, 2018 (division D of Public Law 115–56) is further amended by—

    (1) striking the date specified in section 106(3) and inserting “March 23, 2018”

    With Congress seemingly coming to agreement on broader issues of funding and operations, ongoing authorization of the RC Program might once again be considered separately and on its own merits, as had historically been the case pre-September 2015.  Hat tip to EB-5 blogger and business plan writer Suzanne Lazicki for a very informative graphic regarding past reauthorizations.

    This development could pave the way for comprehensive reform legislation, a topic Congress has been unable to consider at length given the political realities of passing a CR.

    Several commentators online have stated that the EB-5 Regional Center Program has been extended for two years. Investors and other stakeholders should be aware that at the time of this writing, such is not the case, the extension is only through March 23.

    Contact us today for advice regarding the effects of the changes in Washington on your immigration and business planning. 

  • Seventeen-Day Extension: EB-5 Regional Center and Additional Programs Revived, Government to Reopen

    by Matt Galati | Jan 22, 2018

    This weekend’s government shutdown and lapse in several immigration programs proved to be relatively short lived. Early this afternoon, successful Senate negotiations led to the passage of a Continuing Resolution that will fund the government ​through February 8, 2018. The House passed the CR shortly thereafter and the President signed the extension into law.  

    Effective immediately, the EB-5 Regional Center Program, E-Verify, Conrad 30, and Special Immigrant Religious Worker visas will be resumed. The U.S. Department of Labor’s web sites should also be available tomorrow, enabling the filing and adjudication of related visa processes.

    Importantly, however, Washington remains very divided on how to handle the Trump Administration’s cancellation of the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program. Another shutdown and lapse may be likely if the parties remain at an impasse in the coming weeks.

    Contact us today for advice regarding the effects of the changes in Washington on your immigration and business planning. 

  • Government Shutdown Triggers EB-5 Regional Center Program Lapse

    by Niki Edwards | Jan 20, 2018

    A continuing resolution that would have funded the U.S. government and extend several immigration programs until February 16 has failed in the Senate. Nonessential government services have shut down as of 12 AM January 20, triggering a severe impact on immigration programs and processes. Please see our post from earlier today for a full discussion of programs and processes affected. Importantly, the EB-5 Regional Center program has lapsed.

    Last April, we covered how USCIS would handle an EB-5 RC Program lapse, and present that post for our readers’ review tonight.

    Note that the lapse in the Regional Center program will have no effect on:

    • Forms I-526 filed without a Regional Center (direct EB-5 filings);
    • Investors who have already achieved conditional permanent resident status; or
    • Any Form I-829 filings, whether or not filed based on a Regional Center investment. 

    We will continue to provide coverage as events unfold. The situation remains very fluid as negotiations continue overnight. The program could be revived at any time.

    Our valued clients and agent partners are encouraged to contact EB-5 department head Matthew Galati at with their questions and concerns.

  • Green and Spiegel Attorney Matthew Galati Named in EB-5 Investors Magazine as One of Industry’s Top 5 Rising Stars

    by Mulaho Hassan | Jan 08, 2018

    PHILADELPHIA - January 8, 2018 – EB-5 Investors Magazine has selected U.S. Senior Associate Matthew Galati as one of the industry’s Top 5 Rising Stars for 2017. The prestigious award recognizes Galati’s ever-growing reputation in the EB-5 realm. Galati is a regular contributor to the magazine which specializes in providing information to investors and industry stakeholders. The magazine publishes quarterly and distributes to attorneys, regional center principals, and migration agents around the world.

    “Green and Spiegel has handled numerous EB-5 cases since the Firm’s inception,” said U.S. Practice Director Jonathan Grode. “However, since Matt joined the firm in 2016, we’ve been able to develop a focused unit on immigrant investors with him at its helm. Working in close concert with our Canadian immigrant investor team, we now have focused practice groups catering to investors and agents seeking benefits on both sides of the border, and beyond.  In just 18 months, we’ve significantly expanded our EB-5 footprint through Matt’s leadership. Congratulations to Matt for this well-deserved award.”

    The magazine’s Top Attorney’s Issue honors the top attorneys, business plan writers and economists in the EB-5 industry. Professionals are chosen through a careful selection process comprising of a worldwide EB-5 community member vote, and input from the magazine’s in-house team and editorial board. The list reflects the attorneys with the best track record and reputation in the field. 

    2017 - Badge - Rising Star 

    About Green and Spiegel:

    Green and Spiegel is one of North America’s oldest immigration law practices with over 50 years of experience assisting a diverse global clientele and a role as thought leaders on both sides of the U.S.-Canadian border. The Firm is headquartered in Toronto, Canada with U.S. offices in Philadelphia, PA, Providence, RI, and Vail, CO, as well as an allied practice in London, U.K.

    With a U.S. practice founded in the early 1990s, Green and Spiegel offers a full range of inbound immigration services for employers, temporary workers, individuals and their families. Expanding upon the Firm’s Canadian roots, the U.S. practice represents clients operating in the healthcare, insurance, professional sports, information technology, and many other industries. As a dedicated immigration-only law firm, Green and Spiegel also caters to entrepreneurs, investors, and start-ups seeking immigration benefits. The Firm includes five partners and approximately 130 employees offering services in over 30 different languages.

    Web:;  Twitter: @GreenSpiegelUS 

  • Holiday Gift? EB-5 Regional Center Program To Be Extended for Four More Weeks (Jan. 19, 2018)

    by Matt Galati | Dec 21, 2017

    Congress has bestowed a small holiday gift for EB-5 stakeholders as both houses today voted to extend the federal budget until January 19, 2018. The Continuing Resolution (CR) was approved in the Senate by a 66-32 vote and in the House by 231-188. The CR now goes to the President’s desk where it is expected to be signed before Dec. 23rd.

    The Senate vote was significantly narrower than the most recent extension passed on December 7, when that CR received  81 votes in favor. As we have discussed before, the Trump Administration’s end to DACA continues to risk a government shutdown as Democrats threaten to withhold needed support to force Republicans to act on behalf of DREAMers. A vote on a DACA-related bill is expected in early 2018, although it is not clear what the contents of such legislation will be.

    Since 2015, EB-5 stakeholders have been operating under the assumption that significant changes were soon to be implemented. The first quarter of 2018 will undoubtedly be a pivotal time for EB-5 as a legislative solution to the program’s shortfalls and long-term reauthorization remain elusive. Further complicating matters for the spring is an announcement recently made by the Department of Homeland Security that last year’s proposed regulations are to be published in final form in February 2018. Barring legislative reform, it is almost a near-certainty that the EB-5 minimum investment amounts will be raised significantly and the requirements for the lower threshold ‘Targeted Employment Area’  investments be made more restrictive. Accordingly, the coming weeks  -- at most, months – will likely be investors’ final opportunity to immigrate to the U.S. under the program’s current terms.

    Contact us today for more information relating to immigration through investment or the use of immigrant capital in your enterprise.

  • CR Passed by House and Senate, EB-5 Regional Center Program to Face New Dec. 22 Sunset

    by Matt Galati | Dec 07, 2017

    Today both the U.S. House of Representatives and the Senate passed a Continuing Resolution that will leave the EB-5 Regional Center Program operational – and without changes to its provisions – through December 22.

    The day was not without its drama as it began with Democrats whipping “No” votes. As we discussed before, a major breaking point between the parties is the treatment of DACA beneficiaries. Because this and other divisive issues remain unresolved, it remains to be seen whether the program will be extended further, and in just two weeks’ time.

    The CR now goes to the president’s desk for signature. He is expected to sign the extension.

    Investors seeking EB-5 immigration should strongly consider filing before Dec. 22. We will keep you updated with further developments.

    Contact us today to discuss immigration through investment options in the U.S., Canada, and beyond. 

  • District Court Ruling Revives “International Entrepreneur” Parole

    by Mulaho Hassan | Dec 06, 2017

    Foreign-owned start-up companies seeking to establish their headquarters in the United States received a bit of positive news on Friday when the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia ruled that the Trump Administration’s delay of an Obama-era International Entrepreneur program was unlawful.

    The International Entrepreneur Rule was intended to serve as a pathway for foreign entrepreneurs who meet certain benchmarks to apply for temporary “parole” status - that is, temporarily stay in the country without a visa if their company demonstrated the potential for rapid growth and job creation. This “entrepreneur parole” would offer immigration solutions for individuals who do not qualify for other visas, such as an E-2, to actively manage their businesses.

    As Green and Spiegel previously posted on July 17, 2017, the U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS) delayed and intended to effectively dismantle the International Entrepreneur Rule (“IER”) promulgated by the Obama Administration.  Although the rule was proposed by the Obama administration on August 31, 2016, and set to go into effect on July 17, 2017, the DHS, under Trump, swiftly shelved it citing the Trump Administration’s Executive Order 13767 – purporting to prescribe improvements to border security and immigration enforcement.

    Last Friday, Federal Judge James Boasberg ruled in favor of a lawsuit brought by the National Venture Capital Association (NVCA), in which the NVCA argued that the delay violated the Administrative Procedure Act’s requirements as the DHS did not provide notice or solicit advance comment from the public about the rule change.

    Although the Administration must begin accepting applications under the proposed rule, as of the date of this writing, the IER Form (Form I-941) has been created but not implemented by USCIS.  As such, there is no formal mechanism by which foreign nationals may apply. Green and Spiegel will be closely monitoring developments on this issue.  If your company was affected by the previous delay, or if you feel you may be eligible under the International Entrepreneur Rule, contact us today to discuss potential strategies.

  • Green and Spiegel LLP Ranked Number One in Canadian Business Immigration by The Legal 500

    by Mulaho Hassan | Dec 04, 2017

    We are very excited to announce that Green and Spiegel LLP was named #1 in Canadian business immigration by The Legal 500 Rankings. Our firm was recognized as "well regarded for its expertise across all areas of business immigration law". Senior Partner Stephen Green was additionally named one of the leading Canadian immigration lawyers.

    Founded approximately 30 years ago, The Legal 500 analyzes capabilities of law firms around the globe in its analysis of the global legal market. Using set criteria and feedback from 300,000 clients worldwide the organization seeks to highlight practice area teams that are providing the most cutting-edge and innovative advice to corporate counsel.



  • This Week – and Month – Will Be Critical for the EB-5 Program

    by Niki Edwards | Dec 03, 2017

    Funding for the federal government runs out at midnight on Saturday, Dec. 9. We have been here before: the EB-5 Regional Center Program’s ongoing authorization is dependent upon an extension through a Continuing Resolution (CR). On Saturday, the House Committee on Appropriations announced the introduction of a CR providing a clean extension of the program through December 22. Thus, everyone can expect a short-term extension and another few weeks of anxiety that will hopefully be resolved before Christmas, and then another extension for weeks or months thereafter. Lather, rinse, repeat, right?

    Not exactly, as the politics surrounding the CR have changed dramatically since the last go-round, with the potential that a different immigration program derails the CR and forces a government shutdown and thus a lapse of the Regional Center program​.

    Indeed, passage of the CR is in serious question over the issue of securing protection for individuals affected by President Trump’s cancellation of the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program, which we covered thoroughly in September. Despite Republican control of both legislative bodies and the White House, passing an extension is far from certain. While Republicans are now upbeat following passage of controversial tax reform legislation last week, passing the much less controversial CR may prove to be more difficult. Sixty votes are needed in the Senate. Several prominent Democrats, including Senators Bernie Sanders and Kamala Harris, have publicly stated that they will not support a CR without protections for DACA beneficiaries. Even in the House, passage will be a challenge without securing Democratic votes as a significant number of Republicans routinely oppose CRs when brought to a vote. Accordingly, both Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell and Speaker of the House Paul Ryan will need help from their counterparts to whip support for the CR.

    President Trump remains a bit of a wildcard on the issue as well. In May he called for a shutdown on Twitter, and stories broke last week that he believes that a shutdown will help him politically. While it is hard to imagine that a CR would pass Congress and then be vetoed, McConnell and Ryan are probably unable to secure help from the White House in whipping votes. Complicating these matters further is that even if the CR passes, we will find ourselves in a similar position in just two weeks.

    Without passage of a CR, the EB-5 program will lapse, injecting great uncertainty for stakeholders given how the government will treat pending petitions.

    We will keep our readers updated regarding all future EB-5 legislative changes. Contact us today to discuss achieving permanent residency through investment or the use of EB-5 capital in your project.

  • Why EB-1 and EB-3 Might Not Work as EB-5 Substitutes: Green and Spiegel’s Matthew Galati Co-Authors Chinese-Language Article with CanAm’s Walter Gindin for EB-5 Investors Magazine

    by Mulaho Hassan | Nov 10, 2017

    Manager of Green and Spiegel’s U.S. Investors and Entrepreneurs Division, Matthew Galati recently co-authored an article for EB-5 Investors Magazine, with CanAm Enterprises’ Director, In-house Immigration Counsel, Walter Gindin. The article, published in the Chinese language edition of the magazine is entitled “Why EB-1 and EB-3 might not work as EB-5 substitutes”

     In this article, Galati and Gindin discuss why the proffered alternatives for the backlogged EB-5 visa are not exact substitutes and how potential investors should be aware of the fundamental characteristics of each visa before choosing to utilize them for immigration.

    Gindin and Galati suggest that the only true countermeasure for the significant backlog is to overhaul the EB-5 visa allocation process, preferably through Congress.

    In the article, the two investment immigration attorneys analyze they key characteristics of the EB-1C and EB-3 visas. Specifically, they discuss the potential pitfalls for investors seeking to immigrate to the U.S. using these options and argue that they cannot be scaled or commoditized like the EB-5 visa.  The two cover at great length the eligibility requirements that must be satisfied for each, which would generally disqualify many applicants that might otherwise qualify as EB-5 petitioners.

    Galati and Gindin thoroughly detail the effects of Chinese EB-5 retrogression and advocate for substantial Congressional reform. They note that despite Congressional gridlock, the Department of State could amend its regulations to alter the way visas are currently allocated among principal and derivative applicants. Ultimately, the authors believe that the political likelihood of regulatory change is unclear, however, given the mixed signals sent by the Trump Administration on immigration reforms.

    Founded in 1962, Green and Spiegel is one of North America’s oldest and largest immigration law firms, assisting entrepreneurially-minded immigrants achieve their immigration goals for over five decades. Led by five partners. 17 associates and a supporting team of over 100 individuals, the Firm offers solutions for the U.S. EB-5 Immigrant Investor Program, as well as representation for Canada’s Quebec Immigrant Investor Program (QIIP) and Provincial Nominee Programs (PNPs). Green and Spiegel also assists investors seeking immigration benefits in Grenada, Antigua and Barbuda, Spain, and Portugal.

    CanAm Enterprises, LLC (CanAm), has more than 30 years of experience in promoting and administering private and government immigration-linked investment funds. In 1987, CanAm had its beginning in Canada’s Business Immigrant Investment Program (BIIP). Beginning in 2002, CanAm shifted its focus to the U.S. EB-5 Immigrant Investor Program. Since then, it has had designated or reaffirmed seven Regional Centers that have cumulatively raised more than $2.5 billion in EB-5 capital for 54 projects, representing over 5,000 immigrant investor families.