U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services today announced a process change for Form I-526, Immigrant Petition by Alien Investor, from a first-in, first-out basis to a visa availability approach
“Changing our approach from a first-in, first-out adjudication process to one that prioritizes petitions connected to individuals from countries where visas are currently available better aligns the EB-5 program with congressional intent and makes it more consistent with other USCIS operations,” said USCIS Deputy Director Mark Koumans. “This new approach increases fairness, allowing qualified EB-5 petitioners from traditionally underrepresented countries to have their petitions approved in a more timely fashion to receive consideration for a visa.”
The new visa availability approach simply gives priority to petitions where visas are immediately available, or soon available, and will not create legally binding rights or change substantive requirements. The new visa availability approach will apply to petitions pending as of the effective date of the change. USCIS will implement the visa availability approach on March 31, 2020.
USCIS will hold a public engagement on March 13, 2020 to provide information and answer questions from the public about these operational changes to the management of Form I-526 petition inventory.