EB-5 Regional Center Summit
We are excited to currently be in Scottsdale, AZ for a Regional Center Summit for EB-5 investors. This is a great opportunity for us to stay up-to-date about various EB-5 investor opportunities in the United States and network with other experts and investors from all over the world. Currently there are investment opportunities in a variety of industries, including hospitals, manufacturing, construction, education, banking, hotel, restaurant, medical, trucking, retail and energy technologies. Please contact us if you are interested in learning more about how to obtain an EB-5 at firstname.lastname@example.org.
WASHINGTON — Oct 22, 2014, 3:44 PM ET
By ALICIA A. CALDWELL Associated Press
The White House on Wednesday cautioned against making assumptions about President Barack Obama's changes to immigration rules based on a new federal contract proposal from the Homeland Security Department to buy enough supplies to make as many as 34 million immigrant work permits and residency cards over the next five years.
The Associated Press reported earlier in the day the contract proposal suggested that the Obama administration appeared to be preparing for an increase in the number work permit applications form of immigrants living illegally in the country. The U.S. government produces about 3 million work permits and residency identification, known as green cards, annually. The new contract for at least 5 million cards a year would provide the administration with the flexibility to issue far more work permits or green cards even if it chose not to exercise that option.
"I think those who are trying to read into those specific orders about what the president may decide are a little too cleverly trying to divine what the president's ultimate conclusion might be," White House spokesman Josh Earnest said. "What I would caution you against is making assumptions about what will be in those announcements based on the procurement practices of the Department of Homeland Security."
Earnest did not say whether Obama plans to issue more work permits.
Obama announced earlier this year that if Congress didn't pass immigration legislation, he would act on his own. After twice postponing a final decision, he said as recently as last month that he would hold off on executive actions until after November's midterm elections.
The administration has repeatedly declined to say what options Obama was considering, but it is widely believed that he will expand protections from deportation already extended to more than 500,000 young immigrants who came to the United States as children. Under that program, known as Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals, many young immigrants who are in school or who have graduated and don't have a criminal record can win protection from deportation for up to two years. They are also eligible for work permits.
The president does not have the legal authority unilaterally to offer immigrants living in the country illegally green cards or any other permanent immigration status. But administration officials have said the president can authorize protection from deportation for immigrants on a case-by-case basis, such as with the DACA program, and issue them work permits.
U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services Director Leon Rodriguez told an audience at a Georgetown University Law Center conference Tuesday that his agency was ready for whatever immigration changes Obama may announce. He declined to provide details.
USCIS confirmed to the AP on Tuesday that it published a draft contract proposal to buy the card stock needed to make work permits and permanent resident cards, more commonly known as green cards. The proposal calls for providing material for at least 5 million cards a year, with as many as 9 million "during the initial period ... to support possible future immigration reform initiative requirements." The contract calls for as many 34 million cards over five years.
USCIS spokesman Christopher Bentley described the proposal posted earlier this month a routine contract solicitation.
"Solicitations of this nature are frequent practice," Bentley said. He said the number of immigration applications can rise "for any number of any reasons."
The contract proposal was first reported by the online news site Breitbart.com.
Retrogression of EB-2 category for Indian Nationals by more than four years in latest visa bulletin
Immigrant priority dates are like taking a ticket at the grocery counter - applicants can only apply for adjustment of status to permanent residence (or for their immigrant visa overseas) once their priority date has been reached. The U.S. Department of State Visa Bulletin for November 2014 is out and for Indian nationals seeking employment-based green cards in the second preference category, it is not good news. The priority date is now February 15, 2005, which has moved backwards by more than four years from what it was before. All employment first preference categories remain current, the employment-based second preference category for China has moved forward by 23 days to December 8, 2009 (all other nationalities are current for EB-2, with the exception of India), and the EB-3 (third employment-based preference) category for Indian nationals has advanced by seven days to November 22, 2003 while for Chinese nationals it has advanced by nine months to January 1, 2010. For all other nationals (including Mexico and the Philippines), the priority date for the EB-3 has moved ahead 244 days to June 1, 2012. For a complete listing of priority dates, including family-based cases, the visa bulletin can be found at http://travel.state.gov/content/visas/english/law-and-policy/bulletin/2015/visa-bulletin-for-november-2014.html. If you have questions about the priority dates, please contact us at email@example.com.
Obama: I’ll take executive action on immigration between the midterms and end of the year
By Katie Zezima, October 2, 2014, from The Washington Post
President Obama said Thursday night that he would take executive action on immigration sometime between the midterm elections and the end of the year.
Speaking before the Congressional Hispanic Caucus Institute Gala, Obama said he shares the frustration of many in the room upset that immigration reform remains stalled. Obama was accompanied to the gala by two congressional interns who are DREAMers -- young unauthorized immigrants who entered the United States before the age of 16.
"But if anybody wants to know where my heart is or whether I want to have this fight, let me put those questions to rest right now. I am not going to give up this fight until it gets done," Obama said. "I know the pain of families torn apart because we live with a system that’s broken."
Obama laid blame squarely at the feet of congressional Republicans, who he said exploited a crisis of undocumented children at the southern border for political gain this summer and refuse to act with the president on immigration reform. However, he said, he ultimately needs Congress to pass an immigration law, because anything he does by executive action can be reversed by the next president.
"So the point I want to make is the progress we’ve made has been hard, sometimes it's been slower than we want, but that progress has been steady and it has been real," he said. "I want to make something clear: Fixing our broken immigration system is one more, big thing that we have to do and that we will do."
Now, Obama said, he will also use immigration as a political tool -- by explaining immigration reform is a boon for the economy.
"And when opponents are out there saying who knows what, I'm going to need you to have my back," he said.
Part of that, Obama said, is getting out in November and voting. Only 48 percent of voters turned out to vote in 2012, he said.
"So the clearest path to change is to change that number. Si, se puede … si votamos. Yes we can … if we vote.," he said.
And Obama said he needs them to continue to believe in him.
"And six years ago, I asked you to believe. And tonight, I ask you to keep believing -- not just in my ability to bring about change, but in your ability to bring about change," he said.
For link to article, go to http://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/post-politics/wp/2014/10/02/obama-ill-take-executive-action-on-immigration-between-the-midterms-and-end-of-the-year/
In August this year, the large number of Chinese investors applying to immigrate to the U.S. under the EB-5 category (an immigrant visa category for foreign investors) caused the EB-5 to become unavailable for Chinese nationals for the first time in program history. The new fiscal year began on October 1st and the EB-5 numbers are again current, but not for long, according to Charles Oppenheim, Chief of the Visa Control and Reporting Division for the U.S. Department of State, who spoke at a meeting that an attorney from our firm attended last night.
Based on the current number of Chinese EB-5 applications currently pending, Mr. Oppenheim predicted that the numbers for the EB-5 category could retrogress (i.e. move backward) for Chinese nationals by as much as two years by May 2015 and that several year backlogs could continue to occur each fiscal year if the amount of Chinese EB-5 applications does not diminish.
For prospective Chinese applicants who are interested in the EB-5 program, this means that the EB-5, while still potentially remaining a viable long-term possibility to immigrate to the United States, is not going to help those who want to move to the U.S. within the next 3-4 years, and perhaps even for a longer period of time if the numbers continue to retrogress. Further, if these applicants have children who are approaching age 21 and who could potentially age out before the EB-5 process is complete, other immigration solutions may need to be explored.
If you have any questions about the EB5 program and/or you would like to discuss how this recent update might impact your case, please contact Marty & Ellis.
2016 Diversity Visa Program Registration
U.S. Department of State
Office of the Spokesperson Washington, DC
September 29, 2014
The 2016 Diversity Visa Program (DV-2016) will open at noon, Eastern Daylight Time (EDT) (GMT-4), Wednesday, October 1, 2014, and will close at noon, Eastern Standard Time (EST), Monday, November 3, 2014. Applicants must submit entries electronically during this registration period using the electronic DV entry form (E-DV) at dvlottery.state.gov. Paper entries will not be accepted. All entrants must print and retain their online confirmation page after completing their DV entries so that they will be able to check their entry status. We strongly encourage applicants not to wait until the last week of the registration period to enter. Heavy demand may result in website delays. No entries will be accepted after noon EST on November 3, 2014.
The congressionally mandated Diversity Visa Program is administered on an annual basis by the Department of State and conducted under the terms of Section 203(c) of the Immigration and Nationality Act (INA). Section 131 of the Immigration Act of 1990 (Pub. L. 101-649) amended INA 203 provides for a class of immigrants known as “diversity immigrants.” Sections 201(e) and 203(c) of the INA provide a maximum of 55,000 Diversity Visas each fiscal year to be made available to persons from countries with low rates of immigration to the United States; however, since DV-1999, Congress has set aside 5,000 of this annual allocation to be made available for use under the Nicaraguan and Central American Relief Act (NACARA).
The annual DV program makes visas available to persons meeting the simple, but strict, eligibility requirements. A computer-generated, random drawing chooses selectees for Diversity Visas. The visas are distributed among six geographic regions, with a greater number of visas going to regions with lower rates of immigration, and with no visas going to nationals of countries sending more than 50,000 immigrants to the United States over the period of the past five years. No single country may receive more than seven percent of the available Diversity Visas in any one year.
For DV-2016, natives of the following countries are not eligible to apply because the countries sent more than 50,000 immigrants to the United States in the previous five years: BANGLADESH, BRAZIL, CANADA, CHINA (mainland-born), COLOMBIA, DOMINICAN REPUBLIC, ECUADOR, EL SALVADOR, HAITI, INDIA, JAMAICA, MEXICO, NIGERIA, PAKISTAN, PERU, PHILIPPINES, SOUTH KOREA, UNITED KINGDOM (except Northern Ireland) and its dependent territories, and VIETNAM.
A “native” ordinarily means someone born within a particular country, regardless of the individual's current country of residence or nationality. Persons born in Hong Kong SAR, Macau SAR, and Taiwan are eligible.
The Department of State implemented the electronic registration system beginning with DV-2005 in order to make the DV process more efficient and secure. We utilize special technology and other means to identify those who commit fraud for the purposes of illegal immigration or those who submit multiple entries.
For DV-2016, the Department of State will once again implement an online process to notify entrants of their selection, and to provide information about the immigrant visa application and interview. Beginning May 5, 2015, DV-2016 entrants will be able to use their unique confirmation number provided at registration to check online through Entry Status Check at dvlottery.state.gov to see if their entry was selected. Successful entrants will receive instructions for how to apply for immigrant visas for themselves and their eligible family members.
Confirmation of visa interview appointments will also be made through Entry Status Check. For detailed information about entry requirements, along with frequently asked questions about the DV program, please see the instructions for the DV-2016 program available at http://travel.state.gov/content/visas/english/immigrate/diversity-visa/instructions.html.
U.S. visa News
Marty & Ellis keeps you informed of the latest news regarding visas to the United States.