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  • Jan 24 - Upside Down In EB5

    Comment: Upside Down In EB5

    Many words have been written in recent months about several things negatively affecting the EB5 program, from many different perspectives. Among the criticisms are: USCIS inconsistencies in economic matters, opacity by Regional Centers, avarice on the part of intermediaries, etc etc. What all parties seem to share is a desire to see the EB5 program progress and prosper. We believe that perhaps the worst thing in the EB5 field is not being remarked on by almost any one - and it is one which, if unchecked, may lead to the collapse of the program - we refer to a dis-incentive created by an under-regulated market - a situation worthy of USCIS's attention.

    What we describe here is a situation which currently affects just China, but one that could potentially affect any large EB5 market, such as Dubai or Korea, in the future. What has happened is that an entire ecosystem of intermediaries has popped up in China supporting efforts by Regional Centers and immigration counsel. This ecosystem performs a valuable function - that of ensuring trust, critical for an investment of $500,000, and that of disseminating information, educating people in China about the EB5 program, which education is a necessary, and often under-appreciated function. Unfortunately, however, most of these intermediaries, not satisfied by the already extremely high fees that they command, are ever seeking even higher fees for their services. The problem this creates is a subtle albeit simple one, a problem which attacks the EB5 program at its root. We describe the problem below, and propose a possible remedy for USCIS consideration and community discussion.

    What happens briefly is this: Many healthy Regional Centers, especially those with several different financing sources, have a clear idea of what to pay to financial intermediaries, and refuse to pay more than a certain amount. It is the weakest projects, with marginal prospects, that have the greatest incentive to pay the most intermediary fees, since this ensures the loyalties of the Chinese intermediaries more than the financial prospects of the project. Moreover, beyond a certain point, excessive financial fees undermine the viability of the project itself, in addition to any pre-existing marginality. While failure is a feature, not a bug, of the US capitalist system, one must not lose sight of the fact that coupled to the failures of a weak Regional Center will be denials of I-829s, to say nothing of the US jobs not created. This would be a lose-lose situation, instead of the win-win that EB5 was intended by Congress to be.

    Many of the other problems in the EB5 market stem from the fact that the financial success of Chinese intermediaries is not tied to the creation of US jobs. This conundrum is not unlike those faced by financial markets in the US – such “moral hazards” are endemic here too. However, unlike the US financial markets, USCIS is in a uniquely powerful position to clean the EB5 market up, using the regulators' traditional tools of disclosure and transparency, coupled with sparing use of targeted enforcement action. Among the things USCIS could do would be to require, along with each I-526 petition, a signed statement from the Regional Center to the investor disclosing all intermediary fees involved in that specific $500,000 transaction, such statement to be countersigned by the investor. Since all such statements would be under penalties of perjury under existing law, USCIS could regard the information thus gathered with a high degree of confidence as to accuracy – in any event, whatever problems may present themselves in an individual I-526 petition would be insignificant when USCIS collated the pattern in such disclosures per Regional Center. Such patterns, and patterns across different Regional Centers, would enable even minimal enforcement by USCIS to be targeted very narrowly to cases most likely to present problems in eventual job creation. Rather than tweaking economic analysis, USCIS would be better advised to see what traditional regulatory tools it can bring to bear in the US on markets on the other side of the Pacific Ocean. Share your thoughts by writing to editor@ilw.com.

    Article: Will USCIS Develop Fair, Humane Travel Policies For DACA Recipients? by Emily Creighton

    Article: There's No Such Thing As Successful Multi-Tasking by Ed Poll

    Blogging: 11-Year-Old Trying To Say Goodbye To His Father Before He Was Taken For Deportation Pushed To The Ground by ICE Agents by Matthew Kolken

    Blogging: Will Republican Attempts to Rig the Electoral College Mean the End of Immigration Reform? By Roger Algase

    Blogging: Egypt's Copts Continue to Fear the Future of Egypt By Danielle L. C. Beach-Oswald

    News: USCIS Publishes Revised Forms I-90 and I-601

    News: DOL Publishes Notice On Implementation of iCERT Labor Certification Registry

    News: USCIS Issues Notice To Individuals Who Filed Form I-730 Petition On Behalf Of Relative

    Focus: The EB-5 Summit for Attorneys and Developers
    The EB-5 Summit For Attorneys and Developers will be held on Friday, February 1, 2013 in Miami, FL. Speakers will include Jose Latour, David Appel, Edward Beshara, Boyd Campbell, Estelle McKee, Clifford Morris, Sam Udani, and Others To Be Announced. The curriculum is as follows:

    Program:

    • Lawfully Advising on Choosing a Project
    • Economist Issues: TEAs, Job Creation Models, Tenant Occupancy Issues
    • Developing the 924 Petition

    Lunch Presentation

    • 526 Petitions and Source of Funds Issues
    • 829 Petitions and Documenting Job Creation
    • The Regional Center Viewpoint
    • Current Trends In Finding Investors

    For details on curriculum, speaker bios, and registration information, please see: here.
    For the fax form, see here.

    Don't delay, act today! The final registration deadline is January 29th!

    Headline: A problem-solving approach to immigration Click Here
    Headline: Powerful youth voices share how the DREAMact would affect their lives Click Here
    Headline: California DreamAct Application is now available. DEADLINE: March 2nd. Click Here
    Headline: Business Thinking. Steve Jobs's Widow Launches Petition for Immigration Reform Click Here
    Headline: Dems 'Have A Dance Partner' on Immigration, But Is It Two-Step or Jazz? Click Here
    Headline: Changes to US Immigration Laws May Not be as Remote as Some Might Think Click Here
    Headline: Immigration reform isn't an 'if,' but a 'when' Click Here
    Headline: A Hard Line on Immigration Reform Lurks in Obama's Inaugural Speech Click Here

    Help Wanted: Immigration Professional
    Toronto, Canada - Ernst and Young Global Immigration is seeking a Global Immigration Coordination Manager/Senior. The role of Manager Global Immigration involves day-to-day management and oversight in all aspects of global immigration client accounts. The activities will include supervising Global Coordination Staff and Seniors and can range from ensuring client accounts are being looked after to providing high level reporting on the status programs. An ideal candidate must have 3+ years of Global Immigration or related experience; a law degree would be an asset. Strong organization and project management skills and ability to deliver accurately to tight deadlines in a high-pressured and time-sensitive environment are also a plus. For more information, please visit Ernst and Young's career website at www.ey.com/CA/jobsearch keyword search: Global Immigration or contact Lisa Chow at Lisa.Chow@ca.ey.com

    Help Wanted: Immigration Attorney
    Toronto, Canada - The US Business Immigration Specialists at Egan LLP is seeking an Associate Attorney to manage multiple and challenging US business immigration engagements and to contribute to the delivery of solutions and ideas for their diverse institutional clients. Egan LLP has offices throughout Canada in Vancouver, Calgary, Toronto, and Montreal. The ideal candidate should have a JD along with admission to any US State Bar, a 3+ years of business immigration experience, with an emphasis on high-volume H-1, L-1, NIV, and PERM filings, and strong client management skills, excellent managerial, organizational, and verbal/written communication skills. For more information, please visit Ernst and Young's career website at www.ey.com/CA/jobsearch keyword search: EGAN or contact Lisa Chow at Lisa.Chow@ca.ey.com

    Help Wanted: Immigration Paralegal
    Toronto, Canada - The US Business Immigration Specialists at Egan LLP is seeking a Law Clerk (Paralegal) to manage multiple and challenging US business immigration engagements and to contribute to the delivery of solutions and ideas for our diverse institutional clients. EGAN LLP has offices throughout Canada in Vancouver, Calgary, Toronto, and Montreal. The ideal candidate should have an undergraduate university degree or equivalent related work experience, 2+ years of business immigration experience and must be highly organized, with strong attention to detail and have strong verbal/written communication skills. For more information, please visit Ernst and Young's career website at www.ey.com/CA/jobsearch keyword search: EGAN or contact Lisa Chow at Lisa.Chow@ca.ey.com

    Immigration Law Certificate
    Classes offered both online and in-person. Master the complex and ever changing maze of immigration policies and regulations with the Immigration Law Studies Certificate Program offered by CUNY's School of Professional Studies. This graduate-level certificate program, consisting of (3) three-credit classes, offers students who complete it a comprehensive understanding of the laws, regulations, and processes surrounding the status of immigrants in the US, including family and employment-based immigration and deportation defense. It is designed for individuals working in law firms, companies, government agencies and nonprofit organizations where they interact with immigrants and immigrant legal concerns on a regular basis and would therefore benefit from greater knowledge of the laws and regulations surrounding immigration. For more information on class schedules, tuition and fees, course applications and to register, see here

    To submit an article or a news item to Immigration Daily, write to editor@ilw.com. Follow ILW.COM on Twitter.

    Letters of the Week: Honza Prchal, John Keller

    ComingsNGoings: Immigration Event
    Teleconference - February 14 - 10:00 am (CST) - The Nebraska Service Center is pleased to host the next monthly stakeholder teleconference on Business Issues. Topics to be discussed are premium processing, I-140, I-360, I-485 EB, I-765 riding with EB I-485, I-131 riding with EB I-485, waivers as appropriate, I-824 as appropriate, and I-765(c)(9). Call-in information will be sent to those on the NSC distribution list. To join this list, please email ceo.nsc@dhs.gov with your information.


    An Important disclaimer! The information provided on this page is not legal advice. Transmission of this information is not intended to create, and receipt by you does not constitute, an attorney-client relationship. Readers must not act upon any information without first seeking advice from a qualified attorney. Copyright 1995-2012 American Immigration LLC, ILW.COM. Send correspondence and articles to editor@ilw.com. Letters and articles may be edited and may be published and otherwise used in any medium. The views expressed in letters and articles do not necessarily represent the views of ILW.COM.

    Publisher: Sam Udani ISSN: 1930-062X
    Advisory Board: Jason Dzubow, Rami Fakhoury, Matthew Kolken, Chris Musillo, Greg Siskind, Joel Stewart, Margaret Wong
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