EB5 China is Backlogged.
EB5 Vietnam is Backlogged.
EB5 India is also retrogressed.
And it doesn’t stop with India. Brazil, Taiwan, and South Korea could be next.
Current wait time for Indian Born EB5 Visa applicants is about 8.4 Years (as per May 2019).
So, how do the numbers add up?
EB5 India Retrogression
Let’s look at the numbers behind the expected backlogs for India. Following image is from Immigration Attorney Mona Shah’s Blog.
EB5 Waittime as of May 2019
- Brazil – 1.6 years
- China – Mainland – 16.5
- India – 8.4 Years
- South Korea – 2.4 Years
- China – Taiwan – 2 Years
- Vietnam – 7.6 Years
Now, here’s the how this compares to EB2 and EB3 India.
Charlie was asked about the EB-3 /2 backlog, he predicted that the visa backlog for EB-3 would exceed 50 years (therefore comparing with the 8.4 years for the waiting time for EB-5 for Indian nationals, EB-5 is still a relatively and significantly a more attractive route.)
With EB5 Investment amount set to increase to $900,000, for EB2 and EB3 India national, 8.4 years seem to a viable option.
- EB5 Visa Process for US Green Card – I-526, I-485, and I-829
- Glossary of EB5 Visa Terms
- 20 FAQ’s About EB5 Visa for H1B Visa Holders
- Source fo EB5 Visa Funds for H1B & H4 Visa Holders
- Can $500,000 Investment be Any Type of EB5 Projects?
- EB5 Investment – $900,000 or 1.8 Million
- EB5 Visa Investments: Direct, Direct Pooled vs Regional Center
- EB5 Visa – I526 Denied Due to Source of Funds – Example
Updates below this are estimates from 2018.
I believe the above chart is from the Key Note speech by Mr. Charlie Oppenheim, Chief, Immigrant Visa Control and Reporting, Department of State.
In order to arrive at 5 years wait time for EB5 India, the following data points are required:
- Number of I-526 applications filed at USCIS
- Number of Applications pending at NVC for Consular Processing (including dependants)
- Number of Pending I-485
- Average Processing Time for I-526
Number of I-526 Applications
IIUSA has obtained the pending I-526 applications from USCIS via Freedom of Information Request Act. Following image is from IIUSA.org.
We are going to use a couple of data point from the above charts:
- Number of I-526 applications for India
- FY 2015 – 239
- FY 2016 – 354
- FY 2017 – 587
- Year over Year growth for EB5 applicants from India
- About 47%
The number of applications filed for Consular Processing at NVC:
- Apr 2016 – Mar 2017: 180
- Apr 2018 to Mar 2018: 580
Something to Note: 580 applications includes 6 months of FY 2018. About 700 EB5 visas are available per year. And there was no cut-off date for India in October 2018 Visa Bulletin.
Current Processing Time for I-526 is about 20 to 25 Months as of Oct 2018. Moving back 2 years from current date, applicants who filed I-526 in FY 2015 should be applying for Consular Processing (DS260).
How does FY 2015 (239 applications) relate to 580 applications at NVC?
Applying 1.9 multipliers for Dependants per I-526 applications.
- I-526 = 239
- Depends per application = 454
- Total= 693
Not all applicants would have 2 dependants. So, give or take we have an approximate number to predict the wait times for EB5 India.
EB5 Visa Backlog Predictions
- FY 2016 (354) – No uses, since these applicants should have received I-526 approvals and applied at NVC.
- FY 2017 (587)
- FY 2018 (587 + 47% Increase) = 862
Apply 1.9x Dependents Factor
- FY 2017 (587) = 587 + 1115 = 1702
- FY 2018 (587 + 47% Increase) = 862 + 1637 = 2,500
- Total = 5245
Waiting time for EB5 India = 4,201/700 = 6 Years.
Depending on the number of dependants per applicant, there could be 5 to 6 years of wait time.
As of Oct 2018, EB5 for India is Current.
Even if EB5 backlogs hit India, in comparison to India, EB2, and EB3, 5 years wait time is a lot better than decades-long Green Card wait time.
Using the same logic and calculation, you can find the expected EB5 Visa backlogs and wait times for other countries like Brazil, Taiwan, and South Korea.
The math for 6 years is based on reverse-engineering the numbers from the number of I-526 applications filed and available EB5 Visa number per year for India and other countries.
Now, we have confirmation from the Visa Chief from the recent conference in Chicago about the expected wait time for EB5 India.
If you plan to file EB-5 for India is October 2018 (or November 2018), including the I-526 Processing time, you could expect to receive your Green Card before 5.7 years (Aout June 2024).
How does this compare with EB2 India?
EB2 India gets about 2800 visas per year.
Considering the pending I-485 with USCIS, applications filed on Jan 2011 would receive Green Card around 5.7 years from now.
That’s about 13.5 years waiting for EB2 India.