In 1998, when Immigration and Naturalization Services (INS) (which later became USCIS) issued four precedent setting Administrative Appeals Office (AAO) decisions about the EB-5 Program, it left scores of investors and their family members in immigration limbo. They submitted their EB-5 applications under one set of rules, only to have those rules changed by the retroactive application of these AAO decisions to pending applications. What resulted was class-action litigation that lasted almost 15 years.
Closure has finally been achieved with a settlement finally reached between the class-action plaintiffs and USCIS. The investors and family members who have been in immigration limbo for the past decade plus have finally found certainty and an old, and unfortunate, chapter of the EB-5 Program has been closed. This is welcome news to the industry. The unresolved pending litigation did not reflect well on the U.S. immigration and court system.
More details and analysis of this development will be forthcoming in a future edition of our quarterly magazine. In the meantime, please click the link below to read the full terms of the settlement.