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USCIS Terminates 16 EB-5 Regional Centers

Maria del Carmen Ramos

Maria del Carmen Ramos

Last October, we advised our readers that U.S. Citizenship & Immigration Services (USCIS) had sent out several Notices of Intent to Terminate (NOITT) regional center designation to various regional centers around the nation. We also warned that this appeared to be an upcoming enforcement trend by USCIS to address complaints of fraud and abuse in the EB-5 Regional Center Program. Well, it appears that USCIS has followed through with its threat.  As of January 9, 2015, USCIS terminated the regional center designation for at least 16 EB-5 regional centers.

As a way of background, USCIS may terminate a regional center’s participation in the Immigrant Investor Program when a regional center fails to: (i) promote economic growth as required under the EB-5 regulations, or (ii) submit Form I-924A on an annual basis, on a cumulative basis and/or as otherwise requested by USCIS to demonstrate continued eligibility.  Once a regional center’s designation has been terminated by USCIS, investors are precluded from using an investment within a terminated regional center as a basis to establish eligibility for an immigrant visa under the Immigrant Investor Program.

Below is the list of 16 terminated EB-5 regional centers that are no longer on the list of approved regional centers:

Regional Center Name Termination Date State(s)
Invest US Regional Center 9/29/2014 Wyoming
Gateway Georgia Regional Center 9/29/2014 Georgia
South West Bio Fuel RC LLC 9/29/2014 Texas
South Florida EB-5 Regional Center 8/15/2014 Florida
Michigan Renaissance Regional Center 8/15/2014 Michigan
Kansas BioFuel Regional Center LLC 8/15/2014 Kansas
Ecorntech Regional Center 8/15/2014 Wisconsin
Michigan Renaissance Regional Center 8/15/2014 Michigan
Lake Buena Vista RC 7/2/2014 Florida
USA Now Regional Center 3/28/2014 Texas
North Carolina Center for Foreign Investments, LLC 12/3/2013 North Carolina
Intercontinental Regional Center Trust of Chicago 3/23/2013 Illinois
Mamtek Regional Center 4/11/2012 Missouri
El Monte Regional Center 9/19/2011 California
Victorville RC 10/20/2010 California
Unibex Global Corporation 5/30/2008 Texas

Because the ramifications of losing a regional center designation is significant, regional centers should seek the advice of immigration counsel to ensure that a regional center is timely complying with all of its obligations under the EB-5 regulations.

For more information, please contact Maria del Carmen Ramos at 813.227.2252 or mramos@slk-law.com.

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