Many immigration attorneys hesitate to take the leap into representing investor clients in the EB‑5 process. For those attorneys, partnering with an experienced EB-5 attorney should be considered. Not only might this provide a learning experience and lead to the possibility of the attorney handling future EB-5 cases, but there is also significant EB-5 spin off work that the immigration attorney can handle.
Following the approval of the EB-5 petition, the investor needs to apply for adjustment of status or consular immigrant visa processing. The immigration attorney can handle that work even if he does not handle the EB-5 petition. Likewise with reentry permit applications, which are very common for EB-5 investors who become permanent residents.
Five years after obtaining conditional permanent residence based on an EB-5 petition, the investor and his family may choose to naturalize. This is further spin off work for the immigration attorney. After naturalization, the investor may sponsor family members for permanent residence, which creates even further spin off work.
Some immigration attorneys perform non-immigration legal services. The EB-5 process leaves plenty of room for other services, including tax advice, corporate structuring advice, real estate purchases, employment law issues, etc.
Finally, the immigration attorney may receive a finder’s fee from a regional center even if he does not perform the legal work for the investor. However, the finder’s fee should not be accepted until the attorney does a careful review of both securities law ramifications and the rules of professional responsibility in his jurisdiction of practice.