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The Visa Bulletin (March 2019)

The U.S. Department of State launched its Visa Bulletin for March 2019. That’s an enormous deal for those who’re ready in your priority date to be current in order that your inexperienced card software can transfer forward.

In the event you don’t know what a “visa bulletin” or a “priority date” is, we’ve received you coated. Start by testing the Boundless information on Easy methods to Learn the Visa Bulletin.

When you’re already conversant in those phrases, skip ahead to our summary of key developments or to the submitting class that’s most related to you:

Family-based classes

Employment-based categories

Now let’s continue…

The Backside Line

The March 2019 Visa Bulletin brings some new motion in wait occasions for both the family- (“F”) and employment-based (“EB”) green card classes.

The following key developments combine evaluation by Boundless and insight from the American Immigration Legal professionals Association (AILA), which checks in each month with Charles “Charlie” Oppenheim, Chief of the Visa Management and Reporting Division on the U.S. Department of State, for his assessment of “current trends and future projections.”

In family-based categories:

  • Movement is robust within the family-based categories, especially for the F-2B and F-4 teams. Several nations in every of those categories superior Three months, the most important forward leap since October 2018, when the fiscal yr started. The final advance of at the very least Three months for families occurred in September 2018 (Three.5 months) but only for single Filipino youngsters aged 21 and older of U.S. citizens.
  • A welcome change, Mexican households lastly achieve traction within the F-2B and F-Three categories following a persistent logjam. Married Mexican youngsters of U.S. citizens had made no ahead progress because the start of the 2019 fiscal yr. AILA notes that F-Three movement “was made possible by a decline in demand for cases being processed at Ciudad Juarez” and added that “there is a potential for higher levels of demand pending final action at [U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS)],” based on Oppenheim.
  • Filipino siblings of U.S. citizens (F-4) proceed to make healthy progress, shifting ahead by over Four months, after an almost 1-year leap in February. The movement in F-Four, along with the Three-month advance within the F-Three category, mirror low demand but numerous approvals for applicants who’ve stalled on their own progress, AILA noted.
  • Based on AILA, candidates — especially in the family-based categories — proceed to respond poorly to Type DS-3032 (officially referred to as the “Choice of Address and Agent” type). Consequently, the State Division might have to significantly advance deadlines, though that action might in flip end in longer strains or even retrogression (backward motion).

In employment-based classes:

  • Each Chinese and Indian staff within the EB-Three category stay ahead of those in the EB-2 category, although it’s unclear whether the sample will continue for India.
  • Demand for Filipino staff in the EB-3 class can also be “below target demand,” which triggered a Four-month advance to draw more applicants. Oppenheim informed AILA he’s concerned that applicants might experience an identical sample seen in fiscal years 2014 and 2015, when low demand triggered a pointy development of the deadlines and resulted in a surge that led to a 7-year retrogression.
  • Within the EB-4 class, Mexico continues to make steady progress, whereas Central America stalls again and dates for all other nations stay current.
  • EB-5 China advances by every week following a niche in movement since January because of the expiration of government funding for the I5 and R5 categories, which have been reauthorized after the March Visa Bulletin was revealed.

Wonky technical word: This publish focuses on the “Final Action Dates” in the Visa Bulletin because these dates are most relevant for figuring out when applicants will finally receive their green playing cards.

USCIS declares each month, nevertheless, whether applicants ought to file their “adjustment of status” purposes (these for immigrants already residing in america) based mostly on the “Final Action Dates” or the “Dates for Filing.”

For such purposes filed in March, family-based visa candidates should use the “Dates for Filing” (obtainable on the State Department’s website), whereas employment-based visa applicants should use the “Final Action Dates.” Applicants filing from overseas should comply with the Ultimate Action Dates.

Read on for particulars…


Family-Based mostly Inexperienced Card Backlogs

F-1: single youngsters (age 21 and older) of U.S. residents

NationNew Minimize-off DatePrevious Reduce-off DateChange in Wait TimeCommon Category22-Oct-1122-Sep-11–1 monthChina22-Oct-1122-Sep-11–1 monthIndia22-Oct-1122-Sep-11–1 monthMexico1-Aug-971-Aug-97No changePhilippines1-Apr-0715-Mar-07– 2 weeks, 3 days

Motion on this class is similar to that in February. Mexico makes no progress for the eighth consecutive month:

  • One-month advance for the overall category, China, and India
  • No ahead movement for Mexico
  • Two-week, Three-day advance for the Philippines

F-2A: spouses and single youngsters (beneath age 21) of U.S. green card holders

CountryNew Minimize-off DatePrevious Reduce-off DateChange in Wait Time
Common Class8-Jan-171-Dec-16–1 month, 1 week
China8-Jan-171-Dec-16–1 month, 1 week
IndiaEight-Jan-171-Dec-16–1 month, 1 week
Mexico15-Dec-1615-Nov-16–1 month
Philippines8-Jan-171-Dec-16–1 month, 1 week

Motion is stronger in this category this month, however Mexico makes slightly less progress than the remaining, a reversal from February:

  • One-and-a-half-month advance for the overall class, China, India, and the Philippines
  • One-month advance for Mexico

F-2B: single youngsters (age 21 or older) of U.S. inexperienced card holders

CountryNew Reduce-off DatePrevious Reduce-off DateChange in Wait Time
Basic Class1-Aug-121-Might-12–Three months
China1-Aug-121-Might-12–3 months
India1-Aug-121-Might-12–3 months
Mexico22-Sep-9722-Jun-97–3 months
Philippines22-Jul-071-Jul-07–3 weeks

This month, most nations in this class double their forward movement in February. Mexico, nevertheless, exhibits strongest motion, leaping forward by 3 months, compared with solely 2 weeks in February:

  • Three-month advance for the overall class, China, India, and Mexico
  • Three-week advance for the Philippines

F-3: married youngsters of U.S. citizens

NationNew Reduce-off DatePrevious Reduce-off DateChange in Wait TimeCommon Class8-Sep-0622-Aug-06– 2 weeks, Three daysChina8-Sep-0622-Aug-06– 2 weeks, 3 daysIndiaEight-Sep-0622-Aug-06– 2 weeks, 3 daysMexico15-Jan-9622-Dec-95–3 weeks, 3 daysPhilippines1-Jan-9622-Aug-95–Four months, 1 week, Three days

All nations in this category advance, with strongest motion for the Philippines. Mexico finally makes progress after a 5-month standstill:

  • Two-and-a-half-week advance for the overall class, China, and India
  • Three-and-a-half-week advance for Mexico
  • Over Four-month advance for the Philippines

F-4: siblings of U.S. citizens

CountryNew Reduce-off DatePrevious Minimize-off DateChange in Wait TimeBasic Category22-Sep-0522-Jun-05–Three monthsChina22-Sep-0522-Jun-05–Three monthsIndiaEight-Jul-0422-Jun-04–2 weeks, 2 daysMexico8-Feb-98Eight-Feb-98No changePhilippines1-Jan-961-Oct-95–Three months

Most nations in this class make a lot more healthy advances than in February, while Mexico makes no progress for the fourth month in a row:

  • Three-month advance for the overall category, China, and the Philippines
  • Over 2-week advance for India
  • No motion for Mexico

Employment-Based mostly Inexperienced Card Backlogs

EB-1: extraordinary individuals, outstanding researchers and professors, and multinational executives and managers

NationNew Minimize-off DatePrevious Minimize-off DateChange in Wait Time
Common Category1-Jan-181-Oct-17–3 months
China22-Feb-1715-Dec-16–2 months, 1 week
Central America1-Jan-181-Oct-17–3 months
India22-Feb-1715-Dec-16–2 months, 1 week
Mexico1-Jan-181-Oct-17–Three months
Philippines1-Jan-181-Oct-17–3 months
Vietnam1-Jan-181-Oct-17–3 months

Motion is robust for everyone in this category, although China and India show barely weaker progress:

  • Three-month advance for the overall class, Central America, Mexico, the Philippines, and Vietnam
  • Greater than 2-month advance for China and India

EB-2: distinctive individuals and superior diploma holders

CountryNew Minimize-off DatePrevious Minimize-off DateChange in Wait TimeCommon ClassNo waitNo waitNo changeChina1-Jan-161-Oct-15–Three monthsCentral AmericaNo waitNo waitNo changeIndia9-Apr-096-Apr-09–Three daysMexicoNo waitNo waitNo changePhilippinesNo waitNo waitNo changeVietnamNo waitNo waitNo change

Principally good news on this class, with no strains for almost all nations except China and India:

  • Dates remain present for the overall category, Central America, Mexico, the Philippines, and Vietnam — no wait, have fun!
  • Three-month advance for China
  • Three-day advance for India

EB-Three: bachelor’s diploma holders, expert staff, and unskilled staff

NationNew Reduce-off DatePrevious Reduce-off DateChange in Wait Time
Basic ClassNo waitNo waitNo change
China8-Jul-151-Jul-15–1 week
Central AmericaNo waitNo waitNo change
India22-Might-0922-Apr-09–1 month
MexicoNo waitNo waitNo change
Philippines1-Dec-171-Aug-17–4 months
VietnamNo waitNo waitNo change

No strains for half of the nations on this class, plus the overall class, a development that began at the start of the new fiscal yr. Strains for India and China advance at a barely weaker tempo than in February, whereas the Philippines exhibits strongest movement:

  • Dates nonetheless present for the overall class, Central America, Mexico, and Vietnam
  • One-week advance for China
  • One-month advance for India
  • Four-month advance for the Philippines

Lastly, just to be full about all of this: The no-line pattern of earlier months continues for EB-4 “special immigrants” from the overall class, China, India, the Philippines, and Vietnam. The line stalls again for Central America (a reversal of the earlier month), whereas Mexico advances at a gentle clip. In the EB-5 investor category, solely China and Vietnam continue to have uncleared backlogs, though China exhibits some progress.

ClassNationNew Minimize-off DatePrevious Reduce-off DateChange in Wait TimeEB-4: Particular ImmigrantsCommon CategoryNo waitNo waitNo changeChinaNo waitNo waitNo changeCentral America1-Mar-161-Mar-16No changeIndiaNo waitNo waitNo changeMexico1-Jan-181-Sep-17–Four monthsPhilippinesNo waitNo waitNo changeVietnamNo waitNo waitNo changeCategoryNationNew Minimize-off DatePrevious Reduce-off DateChange in Wait TimeEB-5: BuyersBasic CategoryNo waitNo waitNo changeChina8-Sep-141-Sep-14–1 weekCentral AmericaNo waitNo waitNo changeIndiaNo waitNo waitNo changeMexicoNo waitNo waitNo changePhilippinesNo waitNo waitNo changeVietnam15-Jul-1615-Jun-16–1 month

Why This Issues

In case you’re in line for a green card, it’s necessary to maintain monitor of actual modifications (and certain future developments) in the Visa Bulletin. It’s all the time a good idea to organize all the documents needed on your green card software forward of time, so that you could be able to file as shortly as potential as soon as the Visa Bulletin exhibits that a green card is accessible to you. By failing to file in a month when a inexperienced card is on the market, you danger dealing with a surprise backward motion (“retrogression”) in the subsequent Visa Bulletin, which might shut your window of opportunity for filing a green card software.

Keep tuned for subsequent month’s update! As all the time, we’ll highlight all of the necessary modifications for you. Within the meantime, let this 2-year-old toddler allow you to sharpen your baking expertise.