A blog about U.S. immigration matters by Paul Szeto, a former INS attorney and an experienced immigration lawyer. We serve clients in all U.S. states and overseas countries. (All information is not legal advice and is subject to change without prior notice.)

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Sunday, December 1, 2019

Visa Bulletin Predictions - December 2019 and Beyond

Every month after the release of the monthly visa bulletin, DOS Visa Office Chief Mr. Charlie Oppenheim provides his insights to AILA on the trends, movements, predictions, etc. regarding the usage of immigrant visa numbers. The following are his most important insights following up on the publication of the December 2019 visa bulletin.

To find out how to use the Visa Bulletin, please click here.

Family Visa Categories

F2A Final Action Date has been current Worldwide since July 2019, and will remain that way, owing to continued low demand. 

Demand for F4 category has grown immensely since October, which may slow movement. However, Charlie says that it will likely not retrogress soon. 

Overall, family-based categories will continue forward movement as Charlie had predicted. He notes that advancement could slow down in the near future when demand starts to materialize.

Employment Visa Categories

As Charlie expected, EB-1 Worldwide advanced 6 weeks to July 15, 2018 and EB-1 China 10 weeks to May 15, 2017. EB-1 India has not changed from January 1, 2015. Charlie expects EB-1 Worldwide to continue advancing up to 3 months at a time. 

EB-2 Worldwide demand is high and could retrogress by January 2020. As predicted, EB-2 India's Final Action Date moved forward 2 days to May 15, 2009. China advanced 2 months to June 22, 2015 in December. The gap between EB-2 and EB-3 China is now around 4 months.

(Note: For China, downgrading from EB-2 to EB-3 China is still a viable option for applicants who want to speed up their green card application process.)

EB-3 Worldwide demand is also high and could have a Final Action Date by January 2020. EB-3 China remains at November 1, 2015 for December while EB-3 India remains at January 1, 2019. EB-3 China Other Workers advances 1 month to March 1, 2008 while EB-3 India Other Workers stays at January 1, 2019. 

EB-3 Philippines has used a large number of visas so far this fiscal year. Charlie foresees slowed advancement in this category. 

EB-4 Worldwide, excluding El Salvador, Guatemala, and Honduras, is now current following reauthorization of the EB-4 Certain Religious Workers program by Congress. 

EB-5 Regional Centers (I5 & R5) have also been reauthorized by Congress. EB-5 China and Vietnam both advance 2 weeks. EB-5 China now has a date of November 15, 2014, and Vietnam December 1, 2016. EB-5 India advances 3 weeks to January 1, 2018. Other countries remain current.

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