There are none. Zip. Zero. Nada.

The good news is that, better late than never, help may be on the way. Currently the Chinese government specifies that EB-5 opportunities may be handled only by an Agency currently licensed by the provincial Entry-Exit Administration Bureau. Beyond that, the Agency must have established a written working agreement with duly-qualified U.S. immigration attorneys who have a minimum of three years of EB-5 experience and EB-5 projects that have been approved by a local Entry-Exit Administration entity. It boils down to this: the Agency must be licensed, and it must have an established relationship with a bona fide U.S. EB-5 immigration attorney with at least one Chinese-government approved project.[i]

Beyond that, there is almost nothing in the way of regulations, standards or other criteria by which Agencies’ operational ethics and success can be adequately measured or adjudicated. In fact, according to Professor Liu Guofo at the Beijing Institute of Technology,

“The apparent lack of understanding by private Chinese immigration agents, especially when it comes to the EB-5 Immigrant Investor Program, has already caused serious harm to many Chinese petitioners.

According to EB-5 industry insiders, many Chinese agents have strongly recommended bad projects . . . , not as a result of any real due diligence and research based on their likelihood of fulfilling the EB-5 requirements for a permanent Green Cards; not based on a potentially successful return on investment, but rather on the promise of high commissions for the agents themselves.”[ii]
There is currently somewhat of a move afoot to get some kind of regulatory structure into place. In fact, the Chairman of the Beijing Entry and Exit Service Association has more or less underscored Professor Guofo’s comments, saying that “These Agencies only process documents. They have no other rights or duties and are often unclear about what actions they can take on behalf of their clients. The lack of specific rights and duties for these Agencies has resulted in a massive legal gray area.”[iii]

At this time, about the only way you can measure an Agency’s excellence is to create your own standards. That’s not necessarily a bad thing. Here are a few idea starters.

Ideas for measuring excellence:

  • What is the Agency’s track record of success with EB-5 projects?
    • How many EB-5 projects have they participated in?
    • How many of those projects have been deemed successful?

  • What is the Agency’s track record of success with EB-5 investors?
    • How many investors have they assisted in EB-5 projects?
    • How many of those failed to get their Green Cards?

  • What is the Agency’s track record of success financially?
    • What is the total amount of client money invested compared to the return on investment?
    • How many of their clients have lost money either directly or indirectly through EB-5 projects the Agency has introduced to them?

  • What is the Agency’s track record with the government?
    • Local, provincial, and central

  • What is the Agency’s reputation among U.S. immigration attorneys?
  • How do they fare in the opinion of the USCIS office in Beijing or Guangzhou?

Maintain high standards and expect high standards in return. As you can see, there are no guarantees in the “gray waters” of the EB-5 industry. Your integrity may be the best standard of excellence that you can have.

This is an extract from the book How to Find Chinese Investors, Agents & Clients for Your EB-5 Projects & Services: A Practical Guide for Regional Centers, Attorneys, Developers and Businessmen”

More information:

[i] Julia Park, EB-5 Immigration Law;

[ii] Prof. Liu Guofu, Beijing Institute of Technology, reported in Exclusive Visas website, July 31 2013,

[iii] ibid