Immigration Law

Visa Bulletin for September 2016 Released

This week, the U.S. Department of State released its Visa Bulletin for September 2016. This Visa Bulletin includes “Application Final Action Dates” charts and “Dates for Filing Applications” charts for the family- and employment-based categories, and is the last Visa Bulletin to be released for Fiscal Year 2016. To view the Visa Bulletin, please click here: https://travel.state.gov/content/visas/en/law-and-policy/bulletin/2016/visa-bulletin-for-september-2016.html

Of consequence, the “Application Final Action Dates” for the EB-2 and EB-3 preference categories for India, moved forward to February 22, 2005, and February 15, 2005, respectively.

If USCIS determines that there are more immigrant visas available for a fiscal year than there are known applicants for such visas, it will notify the public on its website that the “Dates for Filing Applications” chart may be used. Otherwise, USCIS will indicate on its website that you must use the “Application Final Action Dates” chart to determine when you may file your adjustment of status application. For the September 2016 Visa Bulletin, USCIS has confirmed that applicants may use the “Application Final Action Dates” chart for both the family- and employment-based categories. The site may be viewed by clicking this link: https://www.uscis.gov/visabulletininfo

In its monthly check-in with the U.S. Department of State in July 2016, the American Immigration Lawyers Association (“AILA”) learned that although the U.S. Department of State predicts the EB-2 India and EB-2 China cut-off dates will advance in October, they will not fully recover at that time. It is hoped that they will recover fully as soon as possible, with EB-2 China possibly recovering as early as November. With respect to the EB-1 category for China and India, the U.S. Department of State expects it will again become current in October or November of 2016.

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