Intel & DataNorth America

EB-5 Golden Age? Application Volume, Processing Efficiency, and Project Quality All Rising

Last week, USCIS published new data for fiscal quarter 2, 2024, covering petitions processed from January 1, 2014, to March 31, 2024.

The new numbers look positive: The number of new applicants is increasing, and USCIS’s efficiency is also improving.

New Applications – Petition I-526

The first step in the EB-5 program is an application for conditional residency in the U.S. To apply, investors need to invest funds and prove that their source of funds is lawful.

1,879 new EB-5 applicants started their journey in Q2, the highest number of quarterly applications since the EB-5 Reform and Integrity Act (RIA) of 2022. This is more than three times higher than the same period in fiscal 2023 when only 535 applicants were recorded, and three times higher than in Q1 2024.

69 of the new applicants chose to start their own businesses, while the overwhelming majority chose the Regional Center option.

The petitions reviewed in Q2 2024 were mostly for pre-RIA investors who filed their applications before March 2022. 1,874 investors finally received their decisions at the beginning of the year, with a denial rate of 23%. Additionally, USCIS processed only 172 new forms for investors who filed after the RIA.

In total, USCIS processed 2,046 I-526 petitions, the highest number of I-526 petitions reviewed since March 2022.

The number of people waiting for review is also the lowest in the last few years: 10,605 investors, of whom 6,666 filed their applications before March 2022.

Removal of Condition Application - Petition I-829

The EB-5 program requires the creation of 10 new jobs, which the investor verifies in the second application, Form I-829: Request to Remove Conditions. The investor files this form following two years of conditional residency in the U.S.

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USCIS received 237 applications for removal of status in Q2 2024. In the same period, it reviewed 1,938 petitions, of which it denied only 4%. For comparison, only 87 petitions were filed in Q1 2024 and 352 in Q2 2023.

USCIS still has 7,367 applicants awaiting their decision. However, the trend towards a lower number of pending applications continues.

Regional center statistics

76 new Regional Centers applied for registration with USCIS, which is more than twice the number in Q1 2024, when only 33 forms were filed.

The number of new projects filed with USCIS was 88, which is also higher than in Q1 2024 and Q2 2023, where 50 and 64 forms were filed, respectively.

Third Party Promoters

Since the RIA 2022, all foreign companies promoting EB-5 projects must be registered with USCIS. The form for registration is the I-956K.

124 new applications for initial registrations, amendments, and new employees were filed in Q2 2024. A total of 925 applications are pending review; none have been approved or denied so far.

The EB-5 program is entering a new stage of its life, which many experts are calling the "golden age" of EB-5. Although there are still many uncertainties about the program's rules, the number of applicants is increasing, there are more and better projects on the market, and USCIS is improving its efficiency.

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Varvara Latyntseva AuthorSubscriber
Co-Founder and Managing Director , Second Wind

Co-founder and Managing Director of Second Wind EB-5, a company specializing in investment immigration opportunities in the USA.

My goal is helping and advising private individuals and their families with the process of relocating to the USA through the EB5 investment visa program, making their path easier, less risky, and more predictable.

I have been actively involved in the field of immigration for more than 14 years, coordinating immigration processes and managing our relocation agency teams.

Since 2017, my key focus has been on the EB-5 program, and the main area of my expertise. My professional background combines knowledge of Immigration, Finance, Planning, Marketing and working alongside some amazing people, both on the client and partner side.

At Second Wind, I working with our EB-5 clients, develop our network of partners in the US, and oversee marketing and management of the non-immigrant visa team.

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