EB5 Investors Magazine Volume 7, Issue 1 - Page 61

EB5INVESTORS.COM 59 P ractical A dvice to A void C onsular P rocessing P itfalls for EB-5 I nvestors It is important to prepare for the consular interview, know all details to your prior U.S. immigration history, pay the USCIS fee prior to entering the country and carry a valid medical exam. By Alexander Perez & Yiting "Dora" Hu A fter the approval of the I-526 petition and if the priority date is current, EB-5 investors and their families must go through a separate process to request their conditional green cards. Immigrant visa processing through a U.S. consulate or embassy abroad is one of two available options to effectively request the conditional green cards, and will be their only option if they are not already present in the U.S. maintaining a valid non-immigrant status. As required by regulation, consular processing culminates in the personal interview of the EB-5 investor and their dependents at a U.S. consulate or embassy abroad. 1 There are practical solutions for streamlining the consular process for EB-5 investors and their families to request immigrant visas by avoiding the most common pitfalls. Most EB-5 investors request their immigrant visas from abroad, rather than seeking their conditional green cards from within the U.S. via an adjustment of status. In fact, over the past seven fiscal years, approximately 85 percent of EB-5 investors and their dependents have consular processed an immigrant visa. Much like the EB-5 process as a whole, consular processing is best described as a series of smaller steps that must be completed in order to proceed to the consular interview. Overall, it may take six to nine months for the consular interview to be scheduled after the approval of the I-526 petition approval. PRE-INTERVIEW PREPARATION The first step in consular processing is a receipt and payment of the fee bills issued by the National Visa Center (NVC). The NVC typically issues the fee bills