Visa Bulletin For April 2024

Number 88
Volume X
Washington, D.C

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A. STATUTORY NUMBERS FOR PREFERENCE IMMIGRANT VISAS

This bulletin summarizes the availability of immigrant numbers during April for: “Final Action Dates” and “Dates for Filing Applications,” indicating when immigrant visa applicants should be notified to assemble and submit required documentation to the National Visa Center.

Unless otherwise indicated on the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) website at www.uscis.gov/visabulletininfo, individuals seeking to file applications for adjustment of status with USCIS must use the “Final Action Dates” charts below for determining when they can file such applications. When USCIS determines that there are more immigrant visas available for the fiscal year than there are known applicants for such visas, USCIS will state on its website that applicants may instead use the “Dates for Filing Visa Applications” charts in this Bulletin. 

1. Procedures for determining dates. Consular officers are required to report to the Department of State documentarily qualified applicants for numerically limited visas; USCIS reports applicants for adjustment of status. Allocations in the charts below were made, to the extent possible, in chronological order of reported priority dates, for demand received by March 4th. If not all demand could be satisfied, the category or foreign state in which demand was excessive was deemed oversubscribed. The final action date for an oversubscribed category is the priority date of the first applicant who could not be reached within the numerical limits. If it becomes necessary during the monthly allocation process to retrogress a final action date, supplemental requests for numbers will be honored only if the priority date falls within the new final action date announced in this bulletin. If at any time an annual limit were reached, it would be necessary to immediately make the preference category “unavailable”, and no further requests for numbers would be honored.

2. The fiscal year 2024 limit for family-sponsored preference immigrants determined in accordance with Section 201 of the Immigration and Nationality Act (INA) is 226,000. The worldwide level for annual employment-based preference immigrants is at least 140,000. Section 202 prescribes that the per-country limit for preference immigrants is set at 7% of the total annual family-sponsored and employment-based preference limits, i.e., 25,620. The dependent area limit is set at 2%, or 7,320.

3. INA Section 203(e) provides that family-sponsored and employment-based preference visas be issued to eligible immigrants in the order in which a petition in behalf of each has been filed. Section 203(d) provides that spouses and children of preference immigrants are entitled to the same status, and the same order of consideration, if accompanying or following to join the principal. The visa prorating provisions of Section 202(e) apply to allocations for a foreign state or dependent area when visa issuances will exceed the per-country limit. These provisions apply at present to the following oversubscribed chargeability areas: CHINA-mainland born, INDIA, MEXICO, and PHILIPPINES. 

4. Section 203(a) of the INA prescribes preference classes for allotment of Family-sponsored immigrant visas as follows: 

FAMILY-SPONSORED PREFERENCES

First: (F1) Unmarried Sons and Daughters of U.S. Citizens: 23,400 plus any numbers not required for fourth preference.

Second: Spouses and Children, and Unmarried Sons and Daughters of Permanent Residents: 114,200, plus the number (if any) by which the worldwide family preference level exceeds 226,000, plus any unused first preference numbers:

A. (F2A) Spouses and Children of Permanent Residents: 77% of the overall second preference limitation, of which 75% are exempt from the per-country limit;

B. (F2B) Unmarried Sons and Daughters (21 years of age or older) of Permanent Residents: 23% of the overall second preference limitation.

Third: (F3) Married Sons and Daughters of U.S. Citizens: 23,400, plus any numbers not required by first and second preferences.

Fourth: (F4) Brothers and Sisters of Adult U.S. Citizens: 65,000, plus any numbers not required by first three preferences.

A. FINAL ACTION DATES FOR FAMILY-SPONSORED PREFERENCE CASES

On the chart below, the listing of a date for any class indicates that the class is oversubscribed (see paragraph 1); "C" means current, i.e., numbers are authorized for issuance to all qualified applicants; and "U" means unauthorized, i.e., numbers are not authorized for issuance. (NOTE: Numbers are authorized for issuance only for applicants whose priority date is earlier than the final action date listed below.)

Family-
Sponsored 
All Chargeability 
Areas Except
Those Listed
CHINA-mainland 
born
INDIA MEXICO PHILIPPINES 
F1 08FEB15 08FEB15 08FEB15 01MAY01 01MAR12
F2A 08SEP20 08SEP20 08SEP20 15AUG20 08SEP20
F2B 22NOV15 22NOV15 22NOV15 22OCT03 22OCT11
F3 01OCT09 01OCT09 01OCT09 08SEP98 08JUN02
F4 08JUN07 08JUN07 15DEC05 15OCT00 15JUN03

For April, F2A numbers EXEMPT from per-country limit are authorized for issuance to applicants from all countries with priority dates earlier than 15AUG20. F2A numbers SUBJECT to per-country limit are authorized for issuance to applicants chargeable to all countries EXCEPT MEXICO, with priority dates beginning 15AUG20 and earlier than 08SEP20. All F2A numbers provided for MEXICO are exempt from the per-country limit.

B. DATES FOR FILING FAMILY-SPONSORED VISA APPLICATIONS

The chart below reflects dates for filing visa applications within a timeframe justifying immediate action in the application process. Applicants for immigrant visas who have a priority date earlier than the application date in the chart below may assemble and submit required documents to the Department of State’s National Visa Center, following receipt of notification from the National Visa Center containing detailed instructions. The application date for an oversubscribed category is the priority date of the first applicant who cannot submit documentation to the National Visa Center for an immigrant visa. If a category is designated “current,” all applicants in the relevant category may file applications, regardless of priority date.

The “C” listing indicates that the category is current, and that applications may be filed regardless of the applicant’s priority date. The listing of a date for any category indicates that only applicants with a priority date which is earlier than the listed date may file their application.

Visit www.uscis.gov/visabulletininfo for information on whether USCIS has determined that this chart can be used (in lieu of the chart in paragraph 4.A.) this month for filing applications for adjustment of status with USCIS. 

Family-
Sponsored 
All Chargeability 
Areas Except
Those Listed
CHINA-
mainland 
born
INDIA MEXICO PHILIPPINES 
F1 01SEP17 01SEP17 01SEP17 01APR05 22APR15
F2A 01SEP23 01SEP23 01SEP23 01SEP23 01SEP23
F2B 01JAN17 01JAN17 01JAN17 01AUG04 01OCT13
F3 01MAR10 01MAR10 01MAR10 15JUN01 08NOV03
F4 01MAR08 01MAR08 08APR06 15APR01 22APR05

5. Section 203(b) of the INA prescribes preference classes for allotment of Employment-based immigrant visas as follows: 

EMPLOYMENT-BASED PREFERENCES

First: Priority Workers: 28.6% of the worldwide employment-based preference level, plus any numbers not required for fourth and fifth preferences.

Second: Members of the Professions Holding Advanced Degrees or Persons of Exceptional Ability: 28.6% of the worldwide employment-based preference level, plus any numbers not required by first preference.

Third: Skilled Workers, Professionals, and Other Workers: 28.6% of the worldwide level, plus any numbers not required by first and second preferences, not more than 10,000 of which to "*Other Workers".

Fourth: Certain Special Immigrants: 7.1% of the worldwide level.

Fifth: Employment Creation: 7.1% of the worldwide level, of which 32% are reserved as follows: 20% reserved for qualified immigrants who invest in a rural area; 10% reserved for qualified immigrants who invest in a high unemployment area; and 2% reserved for qualified immigrants who invest in infrastructure projects. The remaining 68% are unreserved and are allotted for all other qualified immigrants.

A. FINAL ACTION DATES FOR EMPLOYMENT-BASED PREFERENCE CASES

On the chart below, the listing of a date for any class indicates that the class is oversubscribed (see paragraph 1); "C" means current, i.e., numbers are authorized for issuance to all qualified applicants; and "U" means unauthorized, i.e., numbers are not authorized for issuance. (NOTE: Numbers are authorized for issuance only for applicants whose priority date is earlier than the final action date listed below.)

Employment-
based
All Chargeability 
Areas Except
Those Listed
CHINA-
mainland 
born
INDIA MEXICO PHILIPPINES
1st C 01SEP22 01MAR21 C C
2nd 15JAN23 01FEB20 15APR12 15JAN23 15JAN23
3rd 22NOV22 01SEP20 15AUG12 22NOV22 22NOV22
Other Workers 08OCT20 01JAN17 15AUG12 08OCT20 01MAY20
4th 01NOV20 01NOV20 01NOV20 01NOV20 01NOV20
Certain Religious Workers U U U U U
5th Unreserved
(including C5, T5, I5, R5)
C 15DEC15 01DEC20 C C
5th Set Aside:
Rural (20%)
C C C C C
5th Set Aside:
High Unemployment (10%)
C C C C C
5th Set Aside:
Infrastructure (2%)
C C C C C

*Employment Third Preference Other Workers Category: Section 203(e) of the Nicaraguan and Central American Relief Act (NACARA) passed by Congress in November 1997, as amended by Section 1(e) of Pub. L. 105-139, provides that once the Employment Third Preference Other Worker (EW) cut-off date has reached the priority date of the latest EW petition approved prior to November 19, 1997, the 10,000 EW numbers available for a fiscal year are to be reduced by up to 5,000 annually beginning in the following fiscal year. This reduction is to be made for as long as necessary to offset adjustments under the NACARA program. Since the EW final action date reached November 19, 1997 during Fiscal Year 2001, the reduction in the EW annual limit to 5,000 began in Fiscal Year 2002. For Fiscal Year 2024 this reduction will be limited to approximately 150.

B. DATES FOR FILING OF EMPLOYMENT-BASED VISA APPLICATIONS

The chart below reflects dates for filing visa applications within a timeframe justifying immediate action in the application process. Applicants for immigrant visas who have a priority date earlier than the application date in the chart may assemble and submit required documents to the Department of State’s National Visa Center, following receipt of notification from the National Visa Center containing detailed instructions. The application date for an oversubscribed category is the priority date of the first applicant who cannot submit documentation to the National Visa Center for an immigrant visa. If a category is designated “current,” all applicants in the relevant category may file, regardless of priority date.

The “C” listing indicates that the category is current, and that applications may be filed regardless of the applicant’s priority date. The listing of a date for any category indicates that only applicants with a priority date which is earlier than the listed date may file their application.

Visit www.uscis.gov/visabulletininfo for information on whether USCIS has determined that this chart can be used (in lieu of the chart in paragraph 5.A.) this month for filing applications for adjustment of status with USCIS. 

Employment-
based
All Chargeability
Areas Except
Those Listed
CHINA-
mainland 
born
INDIA MEXICO  PHILIPPINES 
1st C 01JAN23 01APR21 C C
2nd 15FEB23 01JUN20 15MAY12  15FEB23 15FEB23
3rd 01FEB23 01JUL21 15SEP12 01FEB23 01JAN23
Other Workers 15DEC20 01JUN17 15SEP12 15DEC20 15MAY20
4th 01DEC20 01DEC20 01DEC20 01DEC20 01DEC20
Certain Religious Workers 01DEC20 01DEC20 01DEC20 01DEC20 01DEC20
5th Unreserved
(including C5, T5, I5, R5)
C 01JAN17 01APR22 C C
5th Set Aside:
(Rural - 20%)
C C C C C
5th Set Aside:
(High Unemployment - 10%)
C C C C C
5th Set Aside:
(Infrastructure - 2%)
C C C C C

B. DIVERSITY IMMIGRANT (DV) CATEGORY FOR THE MONTH OF APRIL

Section 203(c) of the INA provides up to 55,000 immigrant visas each fiscal year to permit additional immigration opportunities for persons from countries with low admissions during the previous five years. The NACARA stipulates that beginning with DV-99, and for as long as necessary, up to 5,000 of the 55,000 annually allocated diversity visas will be made available for use under the NACARA program. Visa numbers made available to NACARA applicants in FY 2023 will result in reduction of the DV-2024 annual limit to approximately 54,850. Section 5104 of the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) for Fiscal Year 2024 amended the NACARA’s provisions on the Diversity Visa program such that the number of visas made available under the NDAA will be deducted from the 55,000 DVs annually allocated. These amendments will not impact the number of diversity visas available until FY 2025. DVs are divided among six geographic regions. No one country can receive more than seven percent of the available diversity visas in any one year.

For April, immigrant numbers in the DV category are available to qualified DV-2024 applicants chargeable to all regions/eligible countries as follows. When an allocation cut-off number is shown, visas are available only for applicants with DV regional lottery rank numbers BELOW the specified allocation cut-off number:

Region All DV Chargeability Areas Except
Those Listed Separately
AFRICA 45,000 Except: Algeria 42,000
Egypt 30,000
Morocco 35,000
ASIA 7,200

Except: Iran 7,000
Nepal 6,000

EUROPE 17,500 Except: Russia 17,400
Uzbekistan 7,000
NORTH AMERICA (BAHAMAS)  13
OCEANIA 1,250
SOUTH AMERICA,
and the CARIBBEAN
2,400

Entitlement to immigrant status in the DV category lasts only through the end of the fiscal (visa) year for which the applicant is selected in the lottery. The year of entitlement for all applicants registered for the DV-2024 program ends as of September 30, 2024. DV visas may not be issued to DV-2024 applicants after that date. Similarly, spouses and children accompanying or following to join DV-2024 principals are only entitled to derivative DV status until September 30, 2024. DV visa availability through the very end of FY-2024 cannot be taken for granted. Numbers could be exhausted prior to September 30.

C. THE DIVERSITY (DV) IMMIGRANT CATEGORY RANK CUT-OFFS WHICH WILL APPLY IN MAY

For May, immigrant numbers in the DV category are available to qualified DV-2024 applicants chargeable to all regions/eligible countries as follows. When an allocation cut-off number is shown, visas are available only for applicants with DV regional lottery rank numbers BELOW the specified allocation cut-off number:

Region All DV Chargeability Areas Except
Those Listed Separately
AFRICA 52,000 Except: Algeria 51,000
Egypt 32,000
Morocco 35,000
ASIA 8,000 Except: Iran 7,100
Nepal 7,100
EUROPE 18,000 Except: Russia 17,750
Uzbekistan 8,000
NORTH AMERICA (BAHAMAS)  15
OCEANIA 1,650
SOUTH AMERICA,
and the CARIBBEAN
2,600

D. SCHEDULED EXPIRATION OF THE EMPLOYMENT FOURTH PREFERENCE RELIGIOUS WORKERS (SR) CATEGORY

Pursuant to H.R. 7463, signed on March 1, 2024, the non-minister special immigrant program expires on March 22, 2024. No SR visas may be issued overseas, or final action taken on adjustment of status cases, after midnight March 21, 2024. Visas issued prior to that date will be valid only until March 21, 2024, and all individuals seeking admission in the non-minister special immigrant category must be admitted (repeat admitted) into the United States no later than midnight March 21, 2024. 

The SR category is listed as “Unavailable” for all countries for April. In the event there is legislative action extending the category, it is likely it will become available effective immediately. If extended, the category will be subject to the same final action dates as the listed Employment-Based Fourth Preference categories per applicable foreign state of chargeability.

E. VISA AVAILABILITY IN THE COMING MONTHS

FAMILY-sponsored categories (potential movement):

Worldwide dates:

F1: Up to three months
F2A (excluding Mexico): Up to six months
F2B: Up to ten weeks
F3: Several months
F4: Up to four weeks 

Mexico:

F1: Up to four months
F2A: Up to three months
F2B: Several months
F3: Up to six months
F4: Up to three months

Philippines:

F3: Several months
F4: Several months

EMPLOYMENT-based categories: Very little to no forward movement is expected in the coming months since the final action dates for many categories advanced for April 2024.

The above final action date projections for the Family and Employment categories indicate what is likely to happen throughout Quarter Three and Quarter Four of FY24. Readers should never assume that recent trends in final action date movements are guaranteed for the future, or that retrogressions will not be required at some point to maintain number use within the applicable annual limits. The determination of the actual monthly final action dates is subject to fluctuations in applicant demand and other variables.

F. U.S. GOVERNMENT EMPLOYEE SPECIAL IMMIGRANT VISAS (SIVs)

The National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) for Fiscal Year 2024, signed into law on December 22, 2023, may affect certain current and former employees of the U.S. Government abroad applying for SIVs or adjustment of status, as described in section 101(a)(27)(D) of the INA. This does not affect certain Iraqis and Afghans applying for SQ and SI SIVs. Applicants should contact the consular section at which they filed their Form DS‑1884 for further information on the impact of that law on their case.

G. FOR THE LATEST INFORMATION ON VISA PROCESSING AT U.S. EMBASSIES AND CONSULATES, PLEASE VISIT THE BUREAU OF CONSULAR AFFAIRS WEBSITE AT TRAVEL.STATE.GOV

Department of State Publication 9514

CA/VO: March 4, 2024