Vietnam EB-5 Retrogression Now a Reality: 5 Things to Know


As predicted in our previous blog , Vietnam retrogression has occurred in the May 2018 Visa Bulletin , and now, only Vietnamese EB-5 applicants who filed before July 22, 2014 will be eligible to receive an EB-5 immigrant visa. Here are five things to know about this new development:

  1. Update in Visa Bulletin . The May 2018 Visa Bulletin indicates:
Continued heavy applicant demand will result in the Vietnam Employment Fifth preference (EB-5) category reaching the per-country annual limit during April. As a result it has been necessary to impose a final action date on this preference for the month of May to control number use for the remainder of the fiscal year. It can be expected that the Vietnam Employment Fifth preference category will remain subject to a final action date for the foreseeable future.

  1. New Allotment of Visas in October 2018 . Starting October 1, 2018, the beginning of Fiscal Year 2019, a new allocation of EB-5 visas will be provided. The critical question is what the Final Action Date will be. We expect it to be to be sometime in 2015 or 2016, which would result in a two to three year wait time for Vietnamese EB-5 cases.
  1. How “Rest of World” Filings Affect Vietnamese Waiting Line . When two countries have a Final Action Date for the same visa category, U.S. law requires any unused visa numbers to be allocated in order of priority date, regardless of country of origin. Because there are a significant number of Chinese EB-5 visa applicants in front of more recent Vietnamese I-526 applicants, any additional filings by those from “rest of world” that reduces the number of visas available to Chinese will also increase the waiting line for Vietnamese.
  1. Should I-526s be Filed? With new regulations likely to be finalized soon , Vietnamese applicants are strongly urged to file now to secure their place in the waiting line. Otherwise, they may have to pay the increased investment amount of over $1 million, and endure an even longer waiting line.
  1. What Country is Next? The next big question is which country will be next – India, Korea and Brazil? All appear to be potential candidates for the establishment of a Final Action Date after their 696-annual visa quota is used (about 250 families each). See our past blogs’ warning .

If you have any questions about filing an EB-5 green card application or how the May Visa Bulletin will impact your case, please contact an attorney at Wolfsdorf Rosenthal LLP.

This post originally appeared on Wolfsdorf Immigration Law Group. Copyright © 2017 Wolfsdorf Connect - All Rights Reserved.

About The Author

Robert Blanco specializes in business and employment immigration cases. He prepares both immigrant and non-immigrant petitions for skilled workers, executive managers, high net worth investors, and people of extraordinary ability in the arts, sciences, and business. As a member of the firm’s EB-5 team, Mr. Blanco prepares cases for individual investors and advises U.S. businesses on how to structure investment projects under the regulations of the EB-5 program. He also represents clients before the United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS). Mr. Blanco graduated cum laude with a Bachelor of Science degree in Business Administration from the McDonough School of Business at Georgetown University. He earned his Juris Doctor degree from Loyola Law School with a concentration in Corporate Law. Mr. Blanco is admitted to practice law in the state of California.

Joseph Barnett is licensed as an attorney in the State of Illinois and the State of Wisconsin and practices exclusively in immigration and nationality law.

Bernard Wolfsdorf Bernard Wolfsdorf is the managing partner of the top-rated law firm, Wolfsdorf Rosenthal LLP (, and the past national president of the 14,000-member American Immigration Lawyers Association (AILA). Established in 1986, Wolfsdorf Rosenthal LLP is known worldwide for providing exceptional quality legal services. With 19 lawyers and offices in Los Angles and New York, the firm was recently listed as a top-tier immigration practice by Chambers & Partners with several of the firm's attorneys listed in the 2015 International Who's Who Legal. Mr. Wolfsdorf specializes in EB-5 investment immigration in addition to the full range of global immigration matters.

The opinions expressed in this article do not necessarily reflect the opinion of ILW.COM.