Home Page


Immigration Daily

Archives

Processing times

Immigration forms

Discussion board

Resources

Blogs

Twitter feed

Immigrant Nation

Attorney2Attorney

CLE Workshops

Immigration books

Advertise on ILW

VIP Network

EB-5

移民日报

About ILW.COM

Connect to us

Make us Homepage

Questions/Comments


SUBSCRIBE





The leading
immigration law
publisher - over
50000 pages of
free information!
Copyright
© 1995-
ILW.COM,
American
Immigration LLC.

  • Article: THE NEW VISA CHARTS – A PRIMER IN INTERPRETING THEM, HISTORICAL PERSPECTIVE, USE IN FORECASTING DEMAND, HOW THE NEW SYSTEM WILL WORK, AND THEIR ADDITIONAL BENEFITS TO ALL - Part 1 of 5. By Alan Lee, Esq.

    THE NEW VISA CHARTS – A PRIMER IN INTERPRETING THEM, HISTORICAL PERSPECTIVE, USE IN FORECASTING DEMAND, HOW THE NEW SYSTEM WILL WORK, AND THEIR ADDITIONAL BENEFITS TO ALL - Part 1 of 5.

    by


    Family-Sponsored

    All Chargeability Areas Except Those Listed

    CHINA – mainland Born

    INDIA

    MEXICO

    Philippines

    Employment-Based

    All Chargeability Areas Except Those Listed

    CHINA – mainland Born

    INDIA

    MEXICO

    Philippines

    F1

    15DEC07

    15DEC07

    15DEC07

    15NOV94

    22OCT00

    1st

    C

    C

    C

    C

    C

    F2A

    01MAR14

    01MAR14

    01MAR14

    01FEB14

    01MAR14

    2nd

    C

    01JAN06

    01JAN06

    C

    C

    F2B

    22DEC08

    22DEC08

    22DEC08

    15JUL95

    08SEP04

    3rd

    15AUG15

    22DEC04

    22DEC04

    15AUG15

    22DEC04

    F3

    08MAY04

    08MAY04

    08MAY04

    22MAY94

    15SEP93

    Other Workers

    15AUG15

    01JAN04

    22DEC04

    15AUG05

    22DEC04

    F4

    15JAN03

    15JAN03

    15JAN03

    15MAR97

    01MAR92

    4th

    C

    C

    C

    C

    C

    Certain Religious Workers

    C

    C

    C

    C

    C

    5th Targeted Employment Areas/Regional Centers

    C

    22SEP13

    C

    C

    C

    Visa Bulletin - October 2015

    A. Application Final Action Dates for
    Family-Sponsored Preference Cases

    B. Dates for Filing Family-Sponsored
    Visa Applications

    Family-Sponsored

    All Chargeability Areas Except Those Listed

    CHINA – mainland Born

    INDIA

    MEXICO

    Philippines

    Family-Sponsored

    All Chargeability Areas Except Those Listed

    CHINA – mainland Born

    INDIA

    MEXICO

    Philippines

    F1

    15JAN08

    15JAN08

    15JAN08

    22NOV94

    01JUN01

    F1

    01MAY09

    01MAY09

    01MAY09

    01JUL95

    01SEP05

    F2A

    15APR14

    15APR14

    15APR14

    01MAR14

    15APR14

    F2A

    01MAR15

    01MAR15

    01MAR15

    01MAR15

    01MAR15

    F2B

    15JAN09

    15JAN09

    15JAN09

    01AUG95

    01OCT04

    F2B

    01JUL10

    01JUL10

    01JUL10

    01JAN96

    01JAN05

    F3

    22MAY04

    22MAY04

    22MAY04

    08JUN94

    01OCT93

    F3

    01APR05

    01APR05

    01APR05

    01OCT96

    01AUG95

    F4

    08FEB03

    08FEB03

    08FEB03

    22MAR97

    01MAY92

    F4

    01FEB04

    01FEB04

    01FEB04

    01MAY98

    01JAN93

    A. Application Final Action Dates for
    Employment-Based Preference Cases

    B. Dates for Filing Employment-Based
    Visa Applications

    Employment-Based

    All Chargeability Areas Except Those Listed

    CHINA – mainland Born

    INDIA

    MEXICO

    Philippines

    Employment-Based

    All Chargeability Areas Except Those Listed

    CHINA – mainland Born

    INDIA

    MEXICO

    Philippines

    1st

    C

    C

    C

    C

    C

    1st

    C

    C

    C

    C

    C

    2nd

    C

    01JAN12

    01MAY05

    C

    C

    2nd

    C

    01MAY14

    01JUL11

    C

    C

    3rd

    15AUG15

    15OCT11

    08MAR04

    15AUG15

    01JAN07

    3rd

    01SEP15

    01OCT13

    01JUL05

    01SEP15

    01JAN15

    Other Workers

    15AUG15

    01JAN06

    08MAR04

    15AUG15

    01JAN07

    Other Workers

    01SEP15

    01JAN07

    01JUL05

    01SEP15

    01JAN15

    4th

    C

    C

    C

    C

    C

    4th

    C

    C

    C

    C

    C

    Certain Religious Workers

    U

    U

    U

    U

    U

    Certain Religious Workers

    C

    C

    C

    C

    C

    5th Targeted Employment Areas/Regional Centers

    C

    08OCT13

    C

    C

    C

    5th Targeted Employment Areas/Regional Centers

    C

    01MAY15

    C

    C

    C

    5th Pilot Programs

    U

    U

    U

    U

    U


    This is the first of a 5 part article on the new visa chart system. Parts 2-5 will follow in consecutive publications of the Immigration Daily.

    Part 1 - Interpretation

    The new visa charts that the Visa Office of the Department of State issued on September 9, 2015 for the month of October expanded the number of charts from 2 (one each for family-based and employment-based visas) to 4 (2 each for the 2 categories). Under the old chart (last being the one for September 2015), there was only one date for visa availability which served 2 purposes – establishing the date on which any application for adjustment of status through form I-485 with an earlier priority date could be filed with U.S.C.I.S., and the date on which any form I-485 or immigrant visa application for a consular processed case with an earlier priority date could be approved. Now those 2 purposes are split apart through the additional 2 charts which reestablish the time before which form I-485 can be filed and the time that packet 3 documentation in consular cases can be gathered and submitted.

    For all intents and purposes, the charts labeled “A. Application final action dates for family sponsored preference cases” and “Application final action dates for employment-based preference cases” correspond to the old visa chart in terms of when cases can be closed out. This can be seen in the normal progression of immigrant visa dates from September to October in which for most countries of the world, the F-1 family-based first preference for unmarried sons and daughters over the age of 21 of U. S. citizens moved from 12/15/07 to 1/15/08; F-2A for spouses and unmarried children under the age of 21 of permanent residents went from 3/1/14 to 4/15/14; F-2B for unmarried sons and daughters over the age of 21 of permanent residents advanced from 12/22/08 to 1/15/09; F-3 married sons and daughters of U. S. citizens went from 5/8/04 to 5/22/04; and F-4 siblings of U. S. citizens from 1/15/03 to 2/8/03. For the employment based cases for most countries, the EB-1 preference for extraordinary aliens, outstanding professors and researchers, and multinational executives and managers remained current along with EB-2 for individuals with advanced degrees or exceptional ability; EB-3 skilled workers or professionals and EB-3W other workers remained at 8/15/15; EB-4 religious workers remained current except for certain religious workers which became unavailable; EB-5 entrepreneurs went from current to becoming current for direct or individual investments, but unavailable for EB-5 pilot program (regional center) cases. It should be noted that the unavailability in parts of the EB-4 and EB-5 programs is expected to be resolved imminently by legislation. Of interest to natives of certain countries, EB-2 for China and India moved from 1/1/06 for both countries to 1/1/12 for China and 5/1/05 for India; EB-3 went from 12/22/04 for both countries to 10/15/11 for China and 3/8/04 for India; EB-3W for China advanced from 1/1/04 to 1/1/06 and for India regressed from 12/22/04 to 3/8/04; and EB-5 direct (or individual) investments for China advanced from 9/22/13 to 10/8/13 while investments with regional centers became unavailable.

    The charts labeled “B. Dates for filing family sponsored visa applications” and “Dates for filing of employment-based visa applications” are the real change in allowing cases to enter the pipeline with U.S.C.I.S. and move to a more observable position with the Department of State. They represent a shift in thinking on the term “visa availability.” Whereas visa availability has traditionally been defined as the “immediate visa availability,” this term has not served the public well as it has meant that U.S.C.I.S. will not accept I-485 adjustment of status applications until the date has been reached, and that a successful applicant will not receive permanent residence until approximately 6+ months after the date is available – whereas a candidate for consular processing will normally be interviewed in the same month that visa availability is reached since nothing precludes the Department of State from processing consular cases up to the stage before the final interview where the date is not available. (The State Department has historically used “qualifying dates” approximately 8-12 months from the date that it anticipates immediate availability to start the process in sending out “agent of choice” letters for consular processing). The new dates of filing will be akin to the qualifying dates, not be strictly controlled, and act as the Visa Office’s casting net to gather reliable information on future demand. The largest result will be to allow many applicants in the U. S. to file for adjustment of status much earlier than they were previously able to file. For example, starting on October 1, applicants in the F-1 category with priority dates before 5/1/09 will be allowed filing privileges even as final action can only be taken on those with priority dates before 1/15/08. Due to the limitation of visa numbers, these applicants should not expect that their cases will be resolved within 6 months just because they are able to file. Most should expect to wait in a long queue at U.S.C.I.S. It should be noted that as per the American Immigration Lawyers Association “Check-In with DOS’s Charlie Oppenheim” of September 15, 2015 (Mr. Oppenheim is the Chief of the Visa Control and Reporting Division, U. S. Department of State), it was revealed that U.S.C.I.S. would in general continue to follow the “A. Application final action dates for family sponsored preference cases” and “Application final action dates for employment-based preference cases” in the acceptance of I-485 applications, but that it may exercise its discretion to accept applications in accordance with the “B. Dates for filing family sponsored visa applications” and “Dates for filing of employment-based visa applications” if it determines that there are additional visas available; that the visa bulletin each month will indicate whether U.S.C.I.S. will accept adjustment applications during the upcoming month in accordance with the “B” charts; and that U.S.C.I.S. has agreed for the month of October to permit both family and employment-based immigrants to use the “B” charts to file adjustment of status applications.

    Reprinted with permission.


    About The Author

    Alan Lee, Esq. the author is an exclusive practitioner of immigration law based in New York City with an AV preeminent rating in the Martindale-Hubbell Law Directory for 20+ years, registered in the Bar Register of Preeminent Lawyers, on the New York Super Lawyers list (2011-12, 2013-14, 2014-2015), and recognized as a New York Area Top Rated Lawyer. He has written extensively on immigration over the past years for Interpreter Releases, Immigration Daily, and the ethnic newspapers, World Journal, Sing Tao, Epoch Times, Pakistan Calling, Muhasba and OCS; testified as an expert on immigration in civil court proceedings; and is a regular contributor to Martindale-Hubbell's Ask-a-Lawyer program. His article, "The Bush Temporary Worker Proposal and Comparative Pending Legislation: an Analysis" was Interpreter Releases' cover display article at the American Immigration Lawyers Association annual conference in 2004; his 2004 case in the Second Circuit Court of Appeals, Firstland International v. INS, successfully challenged Legacy INS' policy of over 40 years of revoking approved immigrant visa petitions under a nebulous standard of proof, although its central holding that the government had to notify approved immigrant petition holders of the revocation prior to the their departure to the U. S. for the petition to be able to be revoked was short-lived as it was specifically targeted in the Intelligence Reform Act of 2004 (which in response changed the language of the revocation statute itself). Yet Firstland lives on as precedent that the government must comply with nondiscretionary duties established in law, and such failure is reviewable in federal courts. His 2015 case, Matter of Leacheng International, Inc., with the Administrative Appeals Office of USCIS (AAO) set nation-wide standards on the definition of "doing business" for multinational executives and managers to gain immigration benefits.


    The opinions expressed in this article do not necessarily reflect the opinion of ILW.COM.

Put Free Immigration Law Headlines On Your Website

Immigration Daily: the news source for legal professionals. Free! Join 35000+ readers Enter your email address here: