The purpose of the I-526 petition is to show United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) that the applicant meets the eligibility criteria of the EB-5 program. I-526 petition approval is based on the facts presented in the petition. Therefore, if the material facts on which the approval is based change, USCIS may revoke I-526 approval. However, whether I-526 approval will be revoked depends on the circumstances surrounding the change.
Material changes are changes to the facts on which the I-526 is based that concern significant aspects of the project that can affect adjudication decision. Material changes include changes to fund sourcing and parts of the business plan. For example, if the I-526 was accompanied by a business plan for a restaurant, but the investor decides to change the business plan to a plan for a day spa, it is a material change.
According to the USCIS Policy Manual, material changes that occur after the filing of the I-526 will result in ineligibility of the investor has not secured conditional permanent residency. The investor will probably be issued with a notice of intent to revoke that they will have to overcome to avoid having their I-526 revoked. Other material changes include the petitioner changing regional centers and the regional center through which the investor made the EB5 investment being terminated. Regional center changes are considered material changes whether they occur during the initial deployment of capital or during subsequent redeployment.
The I-526 petition is the foundation of the EB-5 visa application. In the last step of the application process, the I-829 petition is adjudicated based on the facts presented in the I-526, so changes can have a serious effect on EB-5 visa eligibility. The information provided by investors in their I-526 petitions should be carefully reviewed before submission, and any foreign national considering an EB-5 investment should consult immigration counsel and, possibly, international tax counsel.