U.S. Citizenship Act of 2021
On February 2, 2021, President Biden signed multiple executive orders to speed along his immigration reforms. The three executive orders pertain to the humanitarian initiatives of the Biden administration that would help families reunite, especially in cases of the U.S. and Mexican border, allowing some asylum seekers that have been stuck in limbo, and streamlining the citizenship process to those afflicted.
Biden Reverses Trump Ban
Biden has followed through with his promise and signed an executive order to reverse the Trump travel ban directed at Muslim majority countries. It is extraordinary how Joe Biden has stood true to his word and started the process of reversing some of the most controversial policies enacted by Donald Trump.
Removal of Conditions on Investor Green Card
Once an EB-5 investor obtains their I-526 petition approval and subsequently their U.S. conditional green card they are considered a U.S. person. Their green card allows them access to unlock educational, job related and all other benefits associated with being a U.S. citizen. They however will not be able to vote or work for the Federal Bureau of Investigation until they receive naturalization. The conditions on the investors green card are meant to ensure that the new green card holder adheres to all the U.S. rules and regulations and the EB-5 program rules. After two years the investor can apply for removal of the conditions or their I-829 petition.
I-924 and EB-5 investors
The popularity of the EB-5 immigrant investor program is not only due to the great benefits investors obtain but also because of the flexibility the program allows. The investment model is not strict on a single route of investment and this allows the prospective investor to invest in a method that they are most comfortable with. Additionally, this flexibility speaks to the nature of the program mandate to be a true investment.
EB-5 Investment Targeted Employment Areas vs. Non-Targeted Employment Areas
Pursuant to the Immigration and Nationality Act (“INA”), immigrant investors who contribute to the economic growth of the U.S. by investing in U.S. businesses and by creating U.S. jobs qualify for a U.S. permanent visa. Under the act 10,000 visas are allocated to the EB-5 immigrant investor program every fiscal year. Under the requirements for the EB-5 program the capital investment is set at $1,800,000 for direct investment or investments in non-targeted employment areas and $900,000 to rural areas and or targeted areas of employment.
National Expedited Projects and EB-5 investors
There has been a growing interest for national expedited projects. Provided that a regional center can meet the strict criteria set by USCIS, they can get their project approved for expedited status. This means that investors who have invested in a project with national expedited status can get their I-526 petition approved faster. While USCIS will process and expedite applications faster, it does not provide the applicant with automatic approval. USCIS will evaluate each case on its own merit and provide the appropriate feedback.