After an EB-5 investor has filed Form I-526, they will receive a receipt notice, Form I-797, from United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) to confirm that their I-526 petition has been filed. USCIS uses multiple versions of Form I-797 to communicate with EB-5 investors regarding the progress of their filed petitions or to inform them about immigration benefits. Form I-797 cannot be filled out by EB-5 investors; it is used solely by USCIS as a messenger tool.
Form I-797, Notice of Action, is the standard receipt notice USCIS uses to let EB-5 investors know that their I-526 petition has been successfully filed. Upon approval of Form I-526, EB-5 investors will receive the same letter. EB-5 investors should keep this document, as it can be used to apply for immigration benefits in the future.
Form I-797C, Notice of Action, is one of the variants USCIS uses to communicate messages of a different nature to EB-5 investors. This notice is issued to notify EB-5 investors of one of the following matters: receipt of a petition, denial of an I-526 petition or any other petition related to the EB-5 program, transfer of files, rescheduling of a fingerprint or biometric capture appointment, rescheduling of an interview, or the reopening of a case. EB-5 investors who receive Form I-797C should read the notice closely and take prompt action accordingly; not acting quickly enough could delay the processing of their filed petition.
Another relevant variation of Form I-797 that EB-5 investors might receive is Form I-797E, Notice of Action, which is issued to request evidence. Also known as a Request for Evidence (RFE), the notice is sent to EB-5 investor when USCIS needs additional documentation as part of the adjudication of their petition. As with Form I-797C, EB-5 investors should read the contents of their RFE letter carefully and submit the requested paperwork as soon as possible.