Alert readers can often help me catch items needing fixin' so please let me know. By the way, I'm using some fancy new voice recognition software to dictate and it's making interesting errors as it gets better trained. So if you see anything weird that I didn't catch in my proofing, don't be shy about letting me know. Thanks!

What if my labor certification is approved after August 1st but before August 17th?

Again, there is no firm guidance here, but we hope such cases will be accepted as there is no statement that applications must have the necessary documents in the month of July. We will try and update this FAQ if we learn otherwise.

Visa numbers for EB-3 other workers retrogressed in the middle of June under a revised State Department Visa Bulletin for the month. Does this announcement affect those cases?

Unfortunately, it does not.

What if my case was filed before July and is still being processed? Will this development affect when I will get a green card?

The news here is actually not so bad and may actually be good.  Your case may have been one of the ones pulled for adjudication during USCIS' mad rush to use up the years remaining visa numbers.  If that is the case, you may be getting your approval very soon. If you are not in that group, you'll have to wait until visa numbers become available again in October.  However, generally speaking your case should be processed before the cases accepted under the July Visa bulletin and the expected time it will take for your case to be fully processed should hopefully not be extended.

USCIS is set to end bi-specialization at the end of July.  Bi-specialization requires applicants to submit adjustment petitions to the Nebraska Service Center and then half of those cases are selected and sent to the Texas Service Center.  Does the USCIS announcement has any impact on this scheduled change and processing?

We have not heard of any change regarding locations for filing this.  However, it is important to note that as of several weeks ago, direct filing was permitted and applications could be submitted rather to Nebraska or, in the case of applications outside of the Nebraska Service Center jurisdiction, to Texas.  We are recommending to clients that cases be filed directly with the service center having jurisdiction over their case rather than simply filing in Nebraska.

On June 27, 2007, USCIS announced that it was temporarily suspending premium processing for I-140 petitions filed during the month of July because they were concerned about their ability to meet the expected surge in applications.  The suspension announcement said that premium processing would resume on August 1st.  Will USCIS resume processing on August 1st?

USCIS has not made any announcement yet on the subject.  However, it seems pretty likely given the changed circumstances that the suspension of premium processing for I-140 petitions will continue until August 17. 

Am I barred from having a second adjustment application pending if I decide to file another case based on a different I-140 approval?

There is little definitive guidance from USCIS regarding submission of a second I-485 petition or substitution of a new I-140 in an existing adjustment case.  Theoretically, there is no bar to either practice though in the latter case a priority date needs to be available for the new I-140.  The service centers have been inconsistent in their treatment of both of these kinds of cases and he should proceed extremely cautiously before pursuing either.

Rather than waiting on the advance parole document can I travel on my nonimmigrant visa?

An adjustment of status application is normally considered abandoned when an applicant leaves the US without an advance parole document.  However, USCIS will permit an adjustment applicant to travel and reenter the US using one's H-1B or L-1 status.  This can be especially convenient since an advance parole document can take several months to secure and one must remain in the United States wall waiting the document.  Note that if you are in L-1 or H-1B status in the US but never had a visa stamp in your passport you will be required to get a visa stamp before being permitted to reenter the United States.


Note that 8 CFR 245.2(a)(4)(C) states the following:>

(C) The travel
outside of the United States by an applicant for adjustment of status who is
not under exclusion, deportation, or removal proceeding and who is in lawful
H-1 or L-1 status shall not be deemed an abandonment of the application if,
upon returning to this country, the alien remains eligible for H or L status,
is coming to resume employment with the same employer for whom he or she had
previously been authorized to work as an H-1 or L-1 nonimmigrant, and, is in
possession of a valid H or L visa (if required) and the original I-797 receipt
notice for the application for adjustment of status.

We are seeking clarification from USCIS if this is being
enforced since presumably receipts could take longer than usual to be issued.