The United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) recently released the latest quarterly statistics for Form I-829 (Petition by Entrepreneur to Remove Conditions). IIUSA has made a comprehensive review of the new statistics and published this data analysis, highlighting key adjudication trends of the final step of the EB-5 investment immigration process.
What is Form I-829?
Form I-829 is a petition that must be filed by an EB-5 investor “within the 90 days preceding the second anniversary” of the date when an immigrant investor received his/her conditional green card. It’s viewed as the final step of the EB-5 immigration process because an I-829 petition provides evidence to USCIS that an EB-5 investor has met all requirements of the EB-5 Program (such as job creation). Once an I-829 petition is approved by USCIS, the EB-5 investor will receive a permanent green card along with his/her qualified family members.
What the data tell us
- I-829 filings: With year-on-year growth of 27%, 1,013 EB-5 investors filed their I-829 petition in Q1 FY2020. This is the second time in EB-5 history that the number of I-829 filings exceeded 1,000 petitions within a single quarter.
- I-829 approval rates: 99% of the EB-5 investors whose I-829 petition was adjudicated in Q1 FY2020 received approvals from USCIS. The average approval rate for I-829 petitions has now reached its highest level since January 2018.
The number of I-829 filings and average approval rates are two important indicators for EB-5 investors. Since an I-829 petition is the final step of the EB-5 investment immigration process, the continued growth in I-829 filings and the high approval rates for I-829 petitions indicate that more and more EB-5 investors were able to successfully obtain their legal permanent residency in the U.S. because they have successfully met all requirements of the EB-5 program.
Lee Li joined IIUSA in 2014 as a Policy Analyst. He leads the association’s research and data analytic initiatives, providing regular reports on USCIS processing trends, EB-5 visa usage, waiting line forecast, investor markets analyses, and more. In addition, he manages IIUSA’s extensive industry data library and develops a variety of interactive maps as well as data dashboards to inform EB-5 policy discussions such as reforming Targeted Employment Areas (TEA).