EB5 Investors Magazine "Top 25 Awards Edition" Volume 8 Issue 1 | Page 38

TOP IMMIGRATION AT TORNEYS ANGELO PAPARELLI IMMIGRATION ATTORNEYS EB5 INVESTORS MAGAZINE A ngelo Paparelli is a certified immigration law specialist (California) and a Fellow in the College of Labor and Employment Lawyers (the only Fellow practicing management-side immigration- related employment law) with experience in a wide array of sub- specialties of U.S. immigration law, and a focus on investment- based immigration (EB-5, EB-1C, E-2 and L-1) on behalf of regional centers, project developers, and investors. He also serves as an expert witness and consultant on immigration issues arising in litigation, including EB-5, and as an advocate for due-process reforms to America’s immigration laws. HOW DO YOU THINK THE EB-5 PROGRAM SHOULD BE REFORMED? These investors should not be required to invest additional capital beyond their original qualifying investment. The EB-5 visa category should be established as permanent, and not subject to annual numerical limits of any kind. There is no good reason to inhibit or restrict the EB-5’s job-creating engine of prosperity. WHAT NEW TRENDS ARE YOU SEEING IN THE EB-5 INDUSTRY? I see the current focus of existing projects on the redeployment of capital investments where the removal of conditions on residency has been delayed in ever-longer USCIS backlogs. I also see a growing interest in the EB-5 program from investors who hail from non-backlogged countries. The EB-5 program should be reformed to allow innocent, otherwise-qualifying investors who have been defrauded (and their family members) to transition to another form of legal status, with employment authorization and advance parole travel authorization, leading ultimately to permanent residency. NATALIA POLUKHTIN IMMIGRATION ATTORNEYS EB5 INVESTORS MAGAZINE N atalia Polukhtin, attorney at Global Practice (Scottsdale, AZ), specializes in investment immigrant and non-immigrant visa categories. Native to Moscow, Russia, she earned her graduate and undergraduate degrees from Moscow State University before obtaining a law degree from Mercer University School of Law. Polukhtin developed unique expertise in documenting source of funds originated from CIS countries and published several articles on integration of non-traditional sources of funds, such as cryptocurrency, into the EB-5 process. She is a blogger, speaker, and an author of a comprehensive guide written in Russian to business immigration to the U.S. HOW DO YOU THINK THE EB-5 PROGRAM SHOULD BE REFORMED? EB-5 program is long overdue for reform that provides predictability and transparency to the investors. Immigrants need to be able to invest their capital in American economy in reliance on realistic estimates of adjudication time and prospects 38 EB5 INVESTORS MAGAZINE of return of their capital. Thus, eliminating backlogs and improving transparency in administration of regional centers should be the primary focus of the upcoming reform. The EB-5 Reform and Integrity Act is a step in the right direction to assist foreign investors in making life-changing decisions while boosting the credibility of the existing legal mechanisms. WHAT NEW TRENDS ARE YOU SEEING IN THE EB-5 INDUSTRY? With the economic decline caused by the pandemic, the projects that provide clear structure while serving as an asset-protection mechanism are now in more demand than ever. Discouraged by the lack of appropriate government response in their home countries, many individuals currently consider immigration options. The EB-5 industry has a unique opportunity to capitalize on this search and revive interest of foreign investors in relocating their capital to the U.S. As one of the recent trends, it is hard to disregard growing interest in the EB-5 program from the countries that traditionally have not been the most prominent players in this market; CIS countries in particular.