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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Friday, May 28, 2021

Visa Bulletin Predictions June 2021 and FY 2022

In the recent Chat with Charlie, DOS Visa Office Chief Mr. Charlie Oppenheim shared extremely valuable insights about the movements of the Visa Bulletin for the summer and also FY 2022. The key notes are as follows:

  • For FY 2022 (that begins Oct. 1, 2021), the total family-based immigrant visas is expected to be 226,000.
  • For FY 2022 (that begins Oct. 1, 2021), the total employment-based immigrant visas is expected to be 290,000 - which is an all-time high. This includes the spillover of visa numbers from the family-based categories from FY 2021, 
  • Through summer and fall 2021, cutoff dates for the EB categories (except EB5 China) will continue to advance aggressively in an attempt to use up all visa numbers. This specifically includes India and China. "Aggressive" means 2 to 3 months, Charlie explained.  
  • EB3 India will likely advance to 2012 in the "near future".
  • EB2 India with 2013 priority dates will likely become current in FY 2022. 
  • No visa retrogression is expected for employment-based and family-based categories, as well as Diversity Visas, in FY 2021 and probably FY 2022.  
  • Family-based categories espeically Worldwide countries will also advance nicely throughout summer to accommodate the reopening of the U.S. Consulates and Embassies.  However, the advancement will likely stop in 2022.  
  • Family 4th Worldwide had to be retrogressed to "digest" some backlogged cases but is slowly recovering now.
  • Due to Covid and other issues, the annual visa limits for both family-based and employment-based immigrant visas will not be reached for FY 2021.
  • EB5 for China will advance based on FY 2021 annual limit, as Guangzhou was reopened on April 9th.  However, movement will be limited due to the large number filings from September 2015.
  • Filing Action Dates are set to achieve the goal that Final Action Dates will be reached within 8 to 12 months.
  • Charlie explained again that there is a 7% per country cap. Total available visa numbers will be allocated based on this cap first and, for employment cases, will be allocated as follows:  28.6% for each of EB1, EB2 and EB3 categories; and 7.1% for EB4 and EB5 categories.  Leftover visa numbers overall will be allocated based on priority dates regardless of the applicant's country.`

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