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I-526 FY 2019 Q2 stats: filings, approvals & processing way, way down

I-526 Processing Statistics

U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) has published its I-526 performance statistics and the numbers are all low. 2019 Filings are dramatically down quarter by quarter from 1,808 in Q1 to just 580 in Q2. Good news, right? Not so fast, IPO processing has also dropped significantly since Q1: from 2,573 to only 975.

I-526 filings

Q2 FY 2019: 580Q1 FY2019: 18085-year high: 6,277 (Q1 FY 2016)580 is the lowest number of filings in 9 years. And a 68% decrease since Q1 of the same year. And less than 10% of what they were at their high point in recent years. Looking at the first two quarters of FY 2019 a total of 2,388 EB5 green card investors filed I-526’s — a drop of 47% from Q1 and Q2 of FY 2018.Such a low number of filings would normally be encouraging for new investors. But the I-526 processing times are also a factor.

I-526 adjudications

Q2 FY 2019: 975Q1 FY2019: 2,5735-year high: 6,277 (Q1 FY 2016)975 adjudications this last quarter is a decrease of 62% from Q1 of this year. Looking at the first half of FY 2019, 3,548 filings were processed, down 47% from the first half of 2018.The most recent quarters’ numbers are the lowest number of adjudications since Q1 2013. Not good news, but as we reported in our previous article, one EB-5 expert, Suzanne Lazicki, speculates an “unnatural aberration” is driving this slowdown.

I-526 approvals

Q2 FY 2019: 82%Q1 FY2019:,85%5-year high: 97% (Q3 FY 2018)FY 2019 Q2 marks the fourth-straight quarter with declining approval rates, and the lowest approval rate since the 79% in Q3 of FY 2016.

Cases pending (backlog)

I-526 approvalsQ2 FY 2019: 13,105Q1 FY2019: 13,5085-year high: 24,621 (Q3 FY 2017)Since the backlog high point in Q3 FY 2017, the backlog has diminished every quarter. Big picture: this is good news. But the recent slowdown in processing has resulted in the backlog decrease the is currently moving at a crawl, compared with other quarter-to-quarter drops that were much more pronounced. Again, experts surmise something particular is causing this, so hopefully processing will soon resume the recent rates that were much more efficient.Read the IIUSA reportSee the USCIS I-526 stats page

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