Comment: Great Peril

There are many securities minefields for immigration attorneys who help investors select EB-5 projects. While there exist a few purely immigration aspects such as job counts, most issues an investor encounters in project selection are well beyond the expertise of immigration attorneys. Further, these issues are NOT covered by any attorney malpractice insurance. Still further, most of these issues would be direct violations of FINRA and SEC regulations prohibiting financial advice from persons without a Broker Dealer license.

The following is an actual example from an immigration attorney website (who will not be named):

"How to Choose the Right EB-5 Regional Center Investors need to select wisely between all the available regional centers. With 826 EB-5 regional centers currently approved by USCIS, merely 1/3 of them are successful because not all of them operate with integrity. There are documented cases of fraud. That's why choosing the right EB-5 regional center is crucial. To choose the right center, you should ask yourself these questions:

  • How many investors have already committed to the regional center project?
  • What are the industries in the EB-5 regional center's USCIS designation?
  • How are jobs created?
  • What risks are associated with the regional center project?
  • What is the exit strategy from the regional center after receipt of a green card?
  • What is the expected ROI?
  • Will non-EB-5 funding be used in the regional center? Where does it originate from?
  • What are the credentials of the principals?
  • What is the screening process for prospective investors?
  • What EB-5 experience do the regional center's securities and immigration counsel have?
  • Have the regional center principals ever been involved in bankruptcy or a lawsuit?
  • What economic model is applied in order to forecast that the expected number of jobs will be created?"

...an experienced immigration attorney will be able to perform a proper evaluation of the EB-5 regional center you're considering."

Much of this is false and dangerous to the immigration attorney. Of the 12 points above, immigration attorneys are qualified to advise investors ONLY on the 2 points highlighted above in green--which deal exclusively with immigration issues. The remaining 10 points highlighted in red constitute financial advice under FINRA/SEC rules--which immigration attorneys do not have training for, are not legally allowed to advise on, and for which they will incur massive liability not covered by any malpractice insurance.

We understand that clients of immigration attorneys ask immigration attorneys these questions and that immigration attorneys who answer these questions on their website or in person, have good intentions. Many immigration attorneys feel after seeing a dozen projects that they are able to give advice to investors on project selection. They certainly don't, and should not pretend to-- financial advice issues such as suitability analysis for investors, evaluation of financial statements are beyond their expertise, no matter how much EB5 experience is under an attorney's belt. Most importantly, immigration attorneys are not legally allowed to give financial advice without a FINRA/SEC license. Doing so is taking on massive personal liability which is not covered by any malpractice insurance.

Unfortunately, this practice is very prevalent in the immigration bar, much more than most realize. We suggest that immigration law firms should review their websites for any text on project selection that violates FINRA/SEC rules and instruct their immigration attorneys to stop providing project selection guidance to investors (beyond strictly INA matters, such as job counts).

Please let us know your thoughts by writing to us at editor@ilw.com

Article: Abcs of H-1bs (This Is Part Iii of an Viii Part Series): What H-1b Employers Need to Know about the Lca to Avoid Potential Dol Compliance Pitfalls. by David H. Nachman, Esq., Michael Phulwani, Esq., and Ludka Zimovcak, Esq.

Article: Small Business Owners and Gangs in Honduras by Robert Kirkland

Focus: Early Bird: 2021 EB5 Update Seminars

ILW is pleased to invite you to 2021 EB5 Update. 3 Zoom Seminars:

  • Fridays, February 26th & March 12th & April 9th, 2021
  • 2pm to 3:30pm (Eastern Time)

Speakers: Carolyn Lee (Discussion Leader), Christine Chen, Noreen Hogan, Andy Semotiuk, Streve Strnisha and many more to be announced

EARLY BIRD DEADLINE: 11:59PM (ET), February 5th, 2021

Each call features an hour of analysis, strategy and practice tips, followed by questions and answers from participants.

SEMINAR OUTLINE

FIRST Zoom Session on February 26:

Biden Administration and Investment Immigration

  • The Biden Agenda
  • Actions taken to date by the Biden administration
  • DHS under new administration
  • Recent Developments in EB-5
  • The Biden Agenda
  • Actions taken to date by the Biden administration
  • DHS under new administration
  • Recent Developments in EB-5 including I-526, I-829 & I-924 Adjudications

SECOND Zoom Session on March 12:

Investment Immigration Market Outlook 2021

  • Asia
  • Africa and Middle East
  • Europe
  • Latin America
  • Recent Developments in EB-5

THIRD Zoom Session on April 9:

EB-5 Reauthorization

  • June 30, 2021 sunset
  • Substantive legislation
  • Related legislation - ex: HR 1044/S.386
  • Industry priorities
  • Securities pitfalls to watch out for
  • Recent Developments in EB-5

Early Bird Deadline: February 5th, 2021

Early Bird Price $149
(Regular Price $249)

Register Now

Headline: A pardon for 'Dreamers'? Some activists tout amnesty for undocumented immigrants if Congress doesn't act Click here
Headline: Biden immigration orders include family unification task force Click here
Headline: US to resume deporting asylum seekers after judge rejects Biden order Click here
Headline: Here Are The Immigration Actions President Biden Plans To Sign Click here
Headline: Biden to issue new immigration orders, while signaling cautious approach Click here

Help Wanted : Immigration Attorney
Goodlettsville, TN: - PRS Global - an innovative global sourcing and placement company that is working to resolve America's medical personnel shortfall by connecting qualified international professionals with US healthcare providers - is seeking a Senior Business Immigration Attorney to join our dynamic team! Ideal candidates will be self-starters who are comfortable working with a national team of upbeat individuals who have a can-do, solutions-oriented, anything is possible attitude. The ideal candidate also will be extremely organized and detail-oriented while having the flexibility to produce creative solutions in a fast-paced business setting. The position includes extensive opportunities for internal growth within the company and upward career mobility. Applicants must have substantial experience preparing and successfully filing a wide range of immigration employment petitions, including I-140, TN, DS-260, H1-B Visa filings. Excellent interpersonal/customer service skills and the ability to work well with a team are a must! Interested Applicants Should Submit: Resume, One-page cover letter detailing why you're a good fit for this position and the specific, relevant experience you bring, List of Reference (at least three). Please transmit all application materials to Careers@PRSGlobal.com

Letters of the Week:

ComingsNGoings: Submit Your Announcement
If you have a professional announcement such as: New Position, Honors And Awards, Mergers & Acquisitions, New Office Address, New Appointment, New Associate, New Attorney, New Partner, that you wish to share with the Immigration Daily community, send your professional announcement to: editor@ilw.com comingsNgoings announcements is a free service


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 1995-2017 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, Lory Rosenberg, Greg Siskind, Joel Stewart, Margaret Wong