The EB-5 Reform and Integrity Act of 2022 brought many changes to the EB-5 program. For the latest information, please click here.
I am frequently asked my opinion of the EB-5 program. My response goes something like this. It is a great example of a win-win-win government program — as long as it is not destroyed by actions or inactions of USCIS and by actions or inactions of regional centers.
Let’s analyze both parts of the equation. The regional center EB-5 program provides capital for infrastructure and real estate development at a time when capital is often unavailable from traditional sources. Win!
In addition, it creates jobs for U.S. workers. Win-Win!
It provides a method of obtaining permanent residence for wealthy, entrepreneurial foreign nationals who often would have no other method available to do so. Win-win-win!
However, what’s the flip side? USCIS restrictive interpretations, changing rules in midstream and processing delays have created a less than friendly environment for potential investors. In my next blog, I will discuss specific recommendations for how USCIS could make the environment more amenable to attracting investors.
The other potential challenge to the ongoing and future success of the EB-5 program is regional centers themselves. It may take only one unscrupulous or incompetent regional center operator to bring down the entire program if investors get bilked and litigation and/or media attention follows.
Already, competition by regional center marketers overseas has produced questionable practices and questionable claims that have the potential to put the program in disrepute or result in clampdowns by foreign governments to protect their citizenry against such claims.
Both of these deterrents to the future success of the EB-5 program are serious and need to be addressed. If addressed, a potentially terrific government program will reach its full potential.