Unlawful EB-5 Quota Counting Policy Separates Families and Undermines the U.S. Economy

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Unlawful EB-5 Quota Counting Policy Separates Families and Undermines the U.S. Economy

Although Congress intended that the EB-5 visa numbers it set aside be used for qualifying investors, the Department of State has... Read More...
Although Congress intended that the EB-5 visa numbers it set aside be used for qualifying investors, the Department of State has systematically diluted this visa pool by individually counting the spouses and children of investors against the EB-5 quota. This “Counting Policy” unlawfully erodes the number of visas available for actual investors, prolongs wait times, separates immigrant families, and undermines the U.S. economy. Because most EB-5 investors are Chinese and Vietnamese, and the INA limits the number of visas that can be issued to the nationals of any one country, the backlog currently affects investors from China and Vietnam. As a result of the Counting Policy, Chinese investors who file an EB-5 visa petition now are expected to wait 16 years before they become eligible to immigrate to the United States. The Vietnamese backlog is also increasing substantially. Backlogs for EB-5 investors from India are also expected to be announced in the near future. The Counting Policy suppresses the EB-5 Program’s full potential for economic growth and job-creation. It threatens to shutter regional centers, like Plaintiff American Lending Center, that recruit EB-5 applicants and sponsor job-creating projects in the United States. And it needlessly harms EB-5 investors, who are forced to languish in ever-growing visa queues while their children grow up and “age-out” of eligibility to immigrate to the United States as their dependents. As a result of these backlogs, investors who have given up their livelihoods in China, left their jobs, enrolled their children in English language schools that have taken them off the standard educational track for advancement in Chinese society, and sold their assets in anticipation of moving to the United States now find themselves languishing in an artificially congested visa queue. Read less

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L. Francis Cissna
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