Back to Top skip to main content
Green and Spiegel - An Immigration Law Firm
Menu
Dec 27, 2018

Government Shutdown: USCIS Still Accepting Investors’ I-526 Filings Despite Lapse

Matthew Galati

On Friday, December 21st, 2018, Congress adjourned without reaching an agreement on a government spending deal, resulting in a partial government shutdown. There were a number of sunsetting immigrant programs relying on Congress’s reauthorization by the midnight expiration deadline, including the EB-5 Immigrant Investor Regional Center Program.

We previously covered what a lapse would look like based on USCIS’ guidance issued during the early days of the Obama Administration. This guidance stated that only Direct EB-5 petitions (i.e. those not relying on indirect job creation, the cornerstone of the Regional Center program), could be accepted following a lapse in authorization.

However, according to guidance from USCIS, the agency will continue to accept investors’ Regional Center-related filings, notwithstanding the lapse:

The EB-5 Immigrant Investor Regional Center Program expired at the end of the day on Dec. 21, 2018, due to a lapse in congressional authorization to continue the program. All regional center applications and individual petitions are affected. USCIS will not accept new Forms I-924, Application for Regional Center Designation Under the Immigrant Investor Program, as of Dec. 21, 2018. Any pending Forms I-924 as of Dec. 21, 2018, will be put on hold until further notice.  

Regional centers should continue to submit Form I-924A, Annual Certification of Regional Center, for fiscal year 2018. 

We will continue to receive regional center-affiliated Forms I-526, Immigrant Petition by Alien Entrepreneur, and Forms I-485, Application to Register Permanent Residence or Adjust Status, after the close of business on Dec. 22, 2018. As of Dec. 22, 2018, we will put unadjudicated regional center-affiliated Forms I-526 and I-485 (whether filed before or after the expiration date) on hold for an undetermined length of time.

All Forms I-829, Petition by Entrepreneur to Remove Conditions on Permanent Resident Status, filed before or after the expiration date, will not be affected by the expiration of the program.

USCIS will provide further guidance to the public if legislation is enacted to reauthorize, extend, or amend the regional center program.

To be clear, Direct EB-5 is not affected by the shutdown / lapse, as it is a permanent part of the Immigration and Nationality Act and accordingly does not require reauthorization.

At this time, there is no clear indication as to when Congress will agree on a new spending deal or when the government will be back to its full-functioning operations. We will continue to update our readers regarding developments in Washington.

If you have any questions regarding immigrating to the U.S. through investment, contact us today.

Related Team

Recent Blogs

Mar 20, 2019

The Israeli E-2 Visa Is Expected to Go Live on May 1, 2019

We have tracked the roll-out of the Israeli E-2 visa for several years. Implementation may finally take effect in just six weeks’ time, according to the Israeli office of Population and Immigration Authority (PIBA). Learn more in this blog.

Feb 28, 2019

Matthew Galati Quoted in Bloomberg Law Article EB-5 Regulations at OMB

On Feb. 25, 2019, Matthew Galati, who leads Green and Spiegels U.S. Investors and Entrepreneurs Division, was quoted in “Immigrant Investor Visa to See Regulatory Changes Soon,” printed by Bloomberg ​Law. Read the full article here.

Feb 25, 2019

New EB-5 Regulations Expected Soon as USCIS Finalizes Rule and Sends Text to OMB

For over two years, we’ve extensively covered USCIS’ proposed EB-5 Modernization Rule. On Friday, February 22, USCIS formally completed its revisions to the proposed rule via the notice and comment process, sending its draft of the Final Rule to the Office of Management and Budget (OMB). There is no published timetable for OMB’s assessment and publishing of the Final Rule into the Federal Register. Learn more in this blog.