Regional center compliance audits are an additional way to enhance EB-5 program integrity and verify information in regional center applications and annual certifications. Under this program, USCIS will collect case-specific data as part of a compliance audit.

A compliance audit verifies the information provided by designated regional centers in applications and annual certifications. It also verifies compliance with applicable laws and authorities to ensure continued eligibility for the regional center designation. This process includes, for example, researching information in government systems, reviewing commercial and public records, and reviewing evidence that accompanies regional center applications and certifications. It also includes obtaining information, on a consensual basis, through compliance audit data requests and site inspection.

Audit Team Tasks

The audit team will perform the following tasks:

  • Review applications, certifications, and associated records;
  • Review public records and information on the regional center;
  • Verify the information, including supporting documents, submitted with the application(s) and in the annual certification(s);
  • Conduct site inspection;
  • Review and analyze documents;
  • Interview personnel to confirm the information provided with the application(s) and annual certification(s).

Preparing for a Compliance Audit

Before the site inspections: Regional centers should be prepared to present any information originally submitted with the application(s) or certification(s), any updates to that information, and any information requested in the data request that has not previously been provided. The audit team may also request additional information to verify information provided in the application(s) or certification(s).

During the site inspections: Regional centers should immediately provide any readily available documents and information that the audit team requests to verify information provided in the application(s) or certification(s).

After the site inspections: Regional centers should provide all additional information requested to verify or update information in any follow-up communication from USCIS.

After Completing the Audit

After completing the audit, the audit team will document the findings in an audit report, which becomes part of the regional center’s record. Information obtained through the compliance audit will be used to assess the regional center’s compliance with applicable laws and authorities. If the report contains any indicators of fraud, USCIS will assess whether further investigation is warranted.

Participating in a Compliance Audit

Please note that regional centers must continue to serve the purpose of promoting economic growth to remain eligible for designation. If you decline to participate in a compliance audit, USCIS may follow-up with you separately regarding compliance with program requirements. At any point, if the regional center principal expresses an unwillingness to participate in the site inspection, the visit will be terminated. The audit team will complete the audit report using the data available and indicate that the site inspection was terminated at the request of the regional center.

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