An Iranian national demanded in D.C. federal court Tuesday that U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services reconsider her petition for an investor visa leading to permanent resident status, alleging that she had complied with the visa requirements by investing $500,000 in a Washington state hotel project and was nevertheless wrongly denied.
Batool Sadeghzadeh claimed to have invested her funds into a Washington limited partnership to finance the development and operation of a 297-room Embassy Suites hotel called the Hotel Tower, rendering her and her young daughter eligible for permanent residency. She claims that USCIS unjustly denied her petition on the basis of what it deemed to be inadequate evidence of the proper legal path of her funds, violating the Immigration and Nationality Act and administrative procedure statutes, as well as her Fifth Amendment due process rights.
Up to 10,000 visas are available through the EB-5 immigrant investor program, which encompasses individuals investing a minimum of $500,000 with required amounts varying by area in a "new commercial enterprise" employing at least 10 new workers.
Sadeghzadeh argued that USCIS had overstepped its authority under the INA, abused its discretion, had conducted an erroneous survey of her supporting documents and had unreasonably delayed the processing of her visa application for years.
"The denial was replete with not only flawed legal conclusions, but also with factual errors, and bizarre claims about document translations, and missing translations or foreign language originals for documents that were in original English," the complaint states.
Sadeghzadeh requested that the court force USCIS to immediately approve her petition and compensate her for attorneys, as well as any other relief deemed proper. Representatives for USCIS declined to comment.