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Navigating EB-5 Processing Times in 2023: What to Expect

When selecting a visa pathway, understanding the timeline for approval can be a pivotal factor. The landscape of  EB-5 processing time in 2023  has shifted significantly in recent years, impacting both investors and immigration attorneys. We’ll explore the new processing times and how the EB-5 Reform and Integrity Act (RIA) has introduced priority processing for rural projects. Additionally, we’ll examine how choosing the right project, particularly in a Targeted Employment Area (TEA) and in a rural project, can expedite your journey to U.S. residency.

Priority Processing: A Game-Changer in 2023

Historically, the majority of EB-5 petitions received approval within a relatively swift timeframe of two-three years, but recent years have seen significantly longer processing times.

However, there’s promising news for prospective EB-5 investors in 2023. The EB-5 Reform and Integrity Act (RIA), which was enacted in March 2022, has introduced priority processing for investors opting for rural projects. While the exact details of priority processing were initially speculative, we now have a clearer understanding.

Under the RIA, the USCIS has dedicated adjudicators exclusively to process rural EB-5 petitions. The aim, as outlined in the RIA, is to approve rural project investors within 120 days. Although this target has not yet been reached consistently, it’s important to note that the current processing times for priority cases are significantly faster compared to the past decade. In a significant milestone for the industry, some rural EB-5 petitions have been approved in as little as 4 months. This development reflects a smoother and quicker processing experience for rural project investors and offers insight into how the USCIS is operating post-RIA.

One key revelation is that the USCIS has chosen to separate its case processors. Pre-RIA EB-5 investors are being handled by one set of adjudicators, while post-RIA EB-5 investors are assigned to a different set of adjudicators. This separation is a significant departure from the previous assumption that I-526E (Post-RIA) petitions would only be processed after all I-526 (Pre-RIA) petitions were cleared.Looking ahead, we are advising investors to anticipate processing times of 4-12 months for projects prioritized in rural areas and 12-24 months for non-rural EB-5 processing. These estimations provide a more realistic expectation of the current processing landscape for EB-5 processing time in 2023.

EB-5 Visa Timeline: What to Expect 

The timeline for obtaining an EB-5 visa can be shorter than you might imagine. In general, the process results in a green card within two to three years. However, this timeline may extend if any issues arise during the application process. Investing in a rural, priority-processing project can expedite the green card acquisition to less than one year.Although the timeline may seem lengthy, the EB-5 journey is well worth the investment. When you choose to collaborate with the Houston EB5 team, we’ll provide unwavering support at every turn. From your initial application to document collection and beyond, we are here to assist you. Our team comprehends the complexities of the process and is committed to streamlining it for a smooth and successful experience. Please feel free to contact us or to book a call through our Calendly whenever you’d like to have a conversation or learn more.