Currently, there is no official application to apply for regional center designation; as such, there is also no required fee. Once USCIS reviews the information provided, they may ask for additional information.
In order to apply for regional center designation, the applicant should prepare a written statement addressing the following:
Describe how the regional center focuses on a geographical region of the United States, and how it will promote economic growth through improved regional productivity, job creation, and increased domestic capital investment. It is helpful to provide information in the form of maps, charts, and written descriptions of:
The entire desired Regional Center Area
Standard Metropolitan Statistical Areas (SMSA’s)
Rural Areas (areas outside SMSA’s with populations under 20,000 people)
High Unemployment Targeted Employment Areas (TEA’s) as determined by 1.) the Governor or designee, 2.) areas within SMSA’s or 3.) population centers of 20,000 or more outside SMSA’s; with unemployment rates 150% or more of the national rate)
Census Tracts, Cities, Towns, Counties, etc.
Unemployment Rates by Cities, Towns, Counties or Census Tracts, etc.
Provide detailed information on how jobs will be created indirectly
The requirement of creating at least 10 new full-time (35 hours per week) jobs per each individual alien investor may be satisfied by showing that, as a result of the investment and the activities of the new enterprise, at least 10 jobs per alien investor will be created directly or indirectly through an employment creation multiplier effect. Submit an Economic Analysis and model that shows and describes job creation for each category of economic activity (for example, manufacturing, food production/processing, warehousing, tourism and hospitality, transportation, power generation, agriculture, etc.). This may be combined with the model you submit on regional/national impact.
Provide a detailed statement regarding the amount and source of capital which has been committed to the regional center, as well as a description of the promotional efforts taken and planned by the sponsors of the regional center.
USCIS has interpreted the words, “amount and source of capital that has been committed to the Regional Center” to mean the capital sufficient to sustain the Regional Center distinct from immigrant investors’ required capital investment in a new commercial enterprise within the Regional Center. The statement should include: 1.) the exact amount of funds that have been dedicated to the Regional Center to accomplish the goals of the Pilot Program; 2.) the source of such funds; 3.) whether the amount is sufficient to sustain the Regional Center; and 4.) evidence that the funds have already been committed to the Regional Center. None of the capital sustaining the Regional Center can come from immigrant investors’ required threshold capital investment (as distinct from the new commercial enterprises’ revenues). This separation of funds is necessary to enable the alien entrepreneur to qualify for the conditional EB-5 immigrant investor classification at the I-526 petitioning stage of the immigration process.
The proposal should also include information which addresses how investors will be recruited and how the Regional Center will conduct its due diligence to accommodate the requirement that all immigrant investor funds will be lawfully obtained and describe what measures will be taken by the Regional Center to ensure and validate this. Will the submission of certain financial documents be required of foreign investors or will the Regional Center, for example, utilize a professional investigating firm to vet a potential investor’s source of funds? What are the investor’s plans in this regard?
Regional Center proposals require a full description of the past, current and future promotional activities for the Regional Center. This shall include a description of the budget for this activity as well as a statement as to the source of those funds used to accomplish this necessary task.
Have pertinent information predicting the manner in which the regional center will have a positive impact on the regional or national economy in general as reflected by such factors as increased household earnings, greater demand for business services, utilities, maintenance and repair, and construction both within and without the regional center. Support this information through economically or statistically valid forecasting tools, including, but not limited to, feasibility studies, analyses of foreign and domestic markets for the goods or services to be exported [if any], and/or multiplier tables.
A detailed prediction must be provided which includes the topics of regional or national impact, household earnings, greater demand for business services, utilities, maintenance and repair, and construction both within and without the Regional Center.
The proposal should not make vague references to regional economic impacts but should provide actual monetary predictions and address the elements listed in USCIS regulations.
The business aspects of the Regional Center must be fully explained, especially its structure. This aspect of a proposal includes, but is not limited to, the following basic elements or samples of them, demonstrating the business approach and structure to be used by the Regional Center.
An overall Business Plan-mandatory
Draft Operating Agreement
Draft Partnership Agreement
Draft Subscription Agreement
Draft Escrow Agreements and Instructions (one for capital and one for any service fees). Such agreements usually include an “out clause” in the event of an unsuccessful visa process as a marketing tool but are not required.
List of proposed reputable financial institutions to serve as the Escrow Agent(s)
Draft of an Offering Letter, Memorandum, Confidential Private Placement Memorandum, or similar offering made in writing to an immigrant investor through the Regional Center.
Draft Memorandum of Understanding, Interagency Agreement, Contract, Letter of Intent, Advisory Agreement or similar agreement
Provide name of agency or organization that will engage in activities on behalf of or in the name of the Regional Center.
* It is always best to start with a cover letter that acts as an executive summary followed by a table of contents of the various tabbed sections to follow.
Evidence you need to submit after the first initial year
Provide the principal authorized official and point of contact of the Regional Center responsible for the normal operation, management and administration of the Regional Center.
Be prepared to explain how you are administering the Regional Center and how you will be actively engaged in supporting a due diligence screening of its alien investors’ lawful source of capital and the alien investor’s ability to fully invest the requisite amount of capital.
Be prepared to explain the following:
How the Regional Center is actively engaged in the evaluation, oversight and follows up on any proposed commercial activities that will be utilized by alien investors.
How the Regional Center is actively engaged in the ongoing monitoring, evaluation, oversight and follow ups on any investor commercial activity affiliated with the Regional Center that will be utilized by alien investors in order to create direct and/or indirect jobs through qualifying EB-5 capital investments into commercial enterprises within the Regional Center.
Be prepared to provide:
The name, date of birth, petition receipt number, and alien registration number (if one has been assigned by USCIS) of each principal alien investor who has made an investment and has filed an EB-5/I-526 Petition with USCIS, specifying whether the petition was filed, is pending, was approved, denied, or withdrawn by the petitioner, together with the date(s) of such event.
The total number of visas represented in each case for the principal alien investor, plus his/her dependents (spouse and children) for whom immigrant status is sought or has been granted.
The country of nationality of each alien investor who has made an investment and filed an EB-5/I-526 petition with USCIS.
The U.S. city and state of residence (or intended residence) of each alien investor who has made an investment and filed an EB-5/I-526 petition with USCIS.
For each alien investor, identify the following:
the date(s) of investment in the commercial enterprise;
the amount(s) of investment in the commercial enterprise; and
the date(s), nature, and amount(s) of any payment/remuneration/profit/return on investment made to the alien investor by the commercial enterprise and/or Regional Center from when the investment was initiated to the present.
Be prepared to identify/list each of the target industry categories within the geographic boundaries of your Regional Center that have:
received alien investors’ capital, and in what aggregate amounts;
received non-EB-5 domestic capital that has been combined and invested together, specifying the separate aggregate amounts of the domestic investment capital;
of the total investor capital (alien and domestic), identify and list the following:
The name and address of each “direct” job creating commercial enterprise.
The industry category for each indirect job creating investment activity.
Be prepared to provide:
The total aggregate number of approved EB-5 alien investor I-526 petitions per each Federal Fiscal Year to date made through your Regional Center.
The total aggregate number of approved EB-5 alien investor I-829 petitions per each Federal Fiscal Year to date through your Regional Center.
The total aggregate sum of EB-5 alien capital invested through your Regional Center for each Federal Fiscal Year to date since your approval and designation.
The combined total aggregate of “new” direct and/or indirect jobs created by EB-5 investors through your Regional Center for each Federal Fiscal Year to date since your approval and designation.
If applicable, the total aggregate of “preserved” or saved jobs by EB-5 alien investors into troubled businesses through your Regional Center for each Federal Fiscal Year to date since your approval and designation.
If for any given Federal Fiscal Year your Regional Center did or does not have investors to report, then provide:
a detailed written explanation for the inactivity,
a specific plan which specifies the budget, timelines, milestones and critical steps to:
actively promote your Regional Center program,
identify and recruit legitimate and viable alien investors, and
a strategy to invest into job creating enterprises and/or investment activities within the Regional Center.
Regarding your website, if any, please be prepared to provide a hard copy which represents fully what your Regional Center has posted on its website, as well as providing your web address. Additionally, please provide a packet containing all of your Regional Center’s hard copy promotional materials such as brochures, flyers, press articles, advertisements, etc.
A letter from the Work Force Commission of the State or Employment Commission of the State, identifying the designated authority within the state to certify the geographic area(s) or political subdivision(s) within applicable metropolitan statistical areas as having high unemployment equal to 150% or more of the national unemployment rate would need to be addressed as follows and sent via Express Mail or courier service to:
Chief, Office of Service Center Operations, MS 2060
U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services
20 Massachusetts Avenue, NW
Washington, DC 20529-2060
(Updated 10/5/2012 by AG)
For more information on the EB-5 Visa, please refer to the following links: