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FY 2024 Q1 data: strong EB-5 processing continues

The positive EB-5 processing news continues. USCIS processed a total of 1,276 petitions last quarter (1,082 legacy and 194 I-526E completions). The last two quarters represent the best processing numbers since Q1 2019.  The agency also processed 973 I-829 petitions this last quarter, the highest since the beginning of FY 2018. 

I-526E & I-526 petition filings

USCIS received 581 I-526E petitions and 613 in total when including standalone petitions in the first quarter of FY 2024. 

95% of the filings were regional center investments, and 5% were direct or standalone investments.

The filing total represents a sharp decrease compared with the prior quarter. 

I-526E/I-526 filings since the Regional Center Program reauthorization

FY 2022 Q3: 32 (RC & direct)

FY 2022 Q4: 188 (RC & direct)

FY 2023 Q1: 556 (RC & direct)

FY 2023 Q2: 495 RC, 40 direct: 535 total 

FY 2024 Q3: 649 RC, 50 direct: 699 total

FY 2023: Q4: 888 RC, 57 direct: 945 total

FY 2024 Q1: 581 RC, 32 direct: 613 total

Note: FY 2023 Q2 is the first quarter USCIS started to publish separate numbers for direct and regional center petitions.

I-526E processing

USCIS approved 194 I-526E petitions in FY 2024 Q1.  The agency did not publish the I-526E denial numbers and only counts the approvals under its “total completions.”

This is a dramatic increase from the 63 approvals in FY 2023 Q4, the first quarter USCIS has published I-526E approvals.

Legacy I-526 petition (pre-RIA) processing

USCIS processed 1,082 pre-RIA I-526 petitions in Q1 of FY 2024. This is a decrease from the prior quarter, but still the second-highest total since the RIA was enacted.

Of the 1,082 legacy petitions processed in Q1 of FY 2024, 694 were approvals, and 388 were denials, for an approval rate of 64%, slightly up from the prior quarter’s approval rate of 63% and slightly lower than the FY 2023 average approval rate of 66%.

Below are the legacy processing totals since the Regional Center Program reauthorization.

FY 2022 Q3: 455

FY 2022 Q4: 535

FY 2023 Q1: 480

FY 2023: Q2: 904

FY 2023: Q3: 888

FY 2023: Q4: 1,291

FY 2024 Q1: 1,082

Total legacy and I-526E processing

USCIS processed a total of 1,276 petitions last quarter (1,082 legacy and 194 I-526E completions).

This is a slight decrease from the 1,354 total completions in the prior quarter (1,291 legacy and 63 I-526E completions). The last two quarters represented the two highest totals of I-526/I-526E processing in half a decade, since FY 2019 Q1.

I-829 petition processing

973 I-829 petitions were processed in FY 2024 Q1, with 902 approvals for an approval rate of 93%. The latest I-829 processing total is a 23% increase from the prior quarter and the highest quarterly total by a significant margin since the beginning of FY 2018. USCIS is showing a remarkable commitment to better I-829 processing.

FY 2022 Q3: 389 

FY 2022 Q4: 459 

FY 2023 Q1: 336 

FY 2023: Q2: 447 

FY 2023: Q3: 474

FY 2023: Q4: 788

FY 2024 Q1: 973

I-956 regional center applications

New filings continue, albeit at a much lower number than the surge in FY 2022 Q2. I-956 processing continues to increase each quarter.

I-956 filings/petitions processed

FY 2023 Q1*: 25/10

FY 2023 Q2: 176/18

FY 2023 Q3: 41/48

FY 2023 Q4: 25/66

FY 2024 Q1: 33/89

Notes: USCIS thus far has only published approval numbers and no denial numbers. No I-956 data was published in Q1 but may be inferred by year-to-date numbers in Q2. 

I-956F project applications

I-956F Project applications reached their highest total since the application was introduced. This quarter was the first to publish a completion number with 19 applications processed.

I-956F filings

FY 2023 Q1*: 26

FY 2023 Q2: 50

FY 2023 Q3: 61

FY 2023 Q4: 46

FY 2024 Q1: 64

* No I-956F data was published in Q1 but may be inferred by year-to-date numbers in Q2.

I-956G regional center annual statements

The second-highest total of annual statements were filed last quarter. However, inconsistent and missing data makes it difficult to observe any trends.

FY 2023 Q1*: 1

FY 2023 Q2: 287

FY 2023 Q3: 12

FY 2024 Q4: Not disclosed

FY 2024 Q1: 231

* No I-956G data was published in Q1 but may be inferred by year-to-date numbers in Q2.

I-956H bona fides

Anyone involved with a regional center, new commercial enterprise (NCE), or job-creating entity (JCE) must file an I-956H.

FY 2023 Q1*: 275

FY 2023 Q2: 1,007

FY 2023 Q3: 493

FY 2023 Q4: 530

FY 2024, Q1: 677

* No I-956H data was published in Q1 but can be inferred by year-to-date numbers in Q2.

I-956K registration of third-party promoters

FY 2023 Q1: 0*

FY 2023 Q2: 38

FY 2023 Q3: 258

FY 2023 Q4: 192

FY 2024, Q1: 184

Notes: USCIS quarterly numbers in FY 2023 significantly differ from their year-end total, suggesting quarterly publishing errors. No I-956K data was published in Q1 but may be inferred by year-to-date numbers in Q2.

Download USCIS data

This material has been prepared for information and educational purposes only, and it is not intended to provide, nor should it be relied on for tax, legal, or investment advice.  You should consult with your own tax, legal, and financial professionals for your specific situation. 

The views and opinions expressed in this article are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views or opinions of Finalis Securities, LLC. 

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