Episode 1: EB-5 Update w/ Belma Demirovich Chinchoy, Esq.

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Proposed Senate Bill S.1501
"American Job Creation and Investment 
Promotion Reform Act of 2015"

Highlights of Proposed Bill:

  • Program set to expire September 30, 2015. Renewal would extend until September 30, 2020
  • Premium Processing for I-526 Business Plan/Exemplar
  • Concurrent Filing of I-526 Petition for Immigrant Investor, with I-485 Adjustment of Status
  • If Regional Center is terminated, the Immigrant Investor has 180 to change the EB-5 Investment
  • Increase of investment amount from $500,000.00 and $1,000,000.00 to $800,000.00 and $1,200,000.00 respectively
    • Automatic CPI Adjustments
  • Regarding Source of Funds Documentation:
    • Administrative funds now officially require being source
    • USCIS Shall require: Business and tax records / corporate or partnership tax returns and  7 years worth, instead of the current 5 years worth
    • “Evidence related to monetary judgments against the alien entrepreneur, including certified copies of any judgments or evidence of all pending governmental civil or criminal actions, governmental administrative proceedings and any private civil action (pending or otherwise) involving monetary judgments against the alien entrepreneur from any court in or outside of the United States"
    • Identify all parties to the transfer of the funds
  • Gift of investment amount:  Now only allowed to be given investmetn amount gift from Spouse, parent, child, sibling, grandparent (in good faith and not to go around laws),  they must do source of funds too
  • Loan Restrictions: Must be secured by assets owned by the alien entrepreneur, and from reputable bank
  • 10% of jobs of a regional center must be direct jobs
  • Can't include all jobs created by a non-alien investor investment
  • Targeted Employment Area (TEA):
    • At least 50% of jobs within specified TEA area
    • Closed Military bases included now
  • Crackdown on Regional Centers
    • Required Disclosures Application for approval of regional center (Pre-approved business plan)
    • Must submit any marketing materials used or prepared for use in connection with the offering by the regional center or any associated commercial enterprise
    • Conflicts of interest that currently exist or may arise among the regional center, new commercial enterprise…
    • The name and contact information of any person that has received or the commercial enterprise knows will receive any fees or transaction-based compensation in connection with the investment, and a description of the services performed or to be performed by such person which entitle them to the fees or transaction-based compensation
    • Any pending litigation bankruptcy or adverse judgments during the most recent 10-year period affecting the regional center, new commercial enterprise…
    • A description of the policies and procedures reasonably designed to ensure that the commercial enterprise, its agents, employees and attorneys and any person in active concert or participation with the commercial enterprise, comply with the securities laws of the United States in connection with the offer, purchase or sale of its securities
  • Site Visits by USCIS
  • Regional Center Personnel can’t be used in positions of substantial authority for the operations, management or promotion of the regional center if,
    • Person has been found liable within the previous 10 years for any criminal or civil violation of any law relating to fraud or deceit, or at any time if such violation involved a civil liability in excess of $1MM, a criminal conviction with a term of imprisonment of more than 1 year or a criminal or civil violation of any law or agency regulation in connection with the offer, purchase or sale of a security,
    • Or subject to a final order of a State securities commission…
    • Or Reasonable cause to believe the person is involved in illicit trafficking of controlled substances (drugs) or human trafficking
    • Or any activity relating to espionage, sabotage or theft of intellectual property
    • OR money laundering
    • Any terrorist activity
    • Amongst other things
  • Status as a regional center
    • Key players must be LPRs or USC
    • No foreign government entity may be directly or indirectly involved with the ownership or administration of a regional center
    • Attestation and information, fingerprints or biometrics with FBI Background checks
  • Un-reviewable discretion by Secretary of Homeland Security for Termination of Regional Center status
  • Compliance with securities laws: all activities deemed to occur within the US
  • Annual re-issuance of certification for regional center 
  • Creation of an EB-5 Fund: $20,000 annual fee, starting before end of this year!
    • Allows for investigations based outside of the US
  • May be able to apply for removal of conditions even if I-526 approved, but Immigrant Visa not issued yet.

About Belma Demirovic Chinchoy, Esq


Belma Demirovic Chinchoy’s practice focuses on representing businesses and investors/entrepreneurs in immigration matters. She has extensive experience guiding foreign entrepreneurs in setting up immigration-compliant businesses and pursuing EB-5, E-2, EB-1 and L-1 visas and advising US-based businesses on ways in which immigration programs can benefit their operations. Within the EB-5 field, Ms. Demirovic Chinchoy has developed a sub-specialty in direct EB-5 investments and in responding to complex RFEs. Ms. Demirovic Chinchoy has worked on over 200 EB-5 cases ranging from small-scale projects with one or a few direct investors to $180M regional center sponsored projects. Regardless of the size of the client’s undertaking, Ms. Demirovic Chinchoy takes pride in getting to know each of her clients on a personal level and in learning a valuable lesson about law from each of her clients.

Ms. Demirovic Chinchoy also works closely with start-up and small companies and assists them with employment-based petitions. Start-up and small companies require enterprising and nimble counsel that can accompany clients through their growth phases, and Ms. Demirovic Chinchoy thrives in devising legal strategies and solutions  customized to each business’ specific needs.  


*None of the information provided here is considered legal advice. Please consult an attorney privately.