March 2017 Visa Bulletin Update

The Department of State’s (DOS) March 2017 Visa Bulletin showed some minor movement in some employment-based categories, with more significant movement in other employment-based visa categories.

The Worldwide EB-1 category remains current for all categories, including individuals born in mainland China, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras, India, Mexico, and the Philippines.

The cutoff date for worldwide chargeability in the EB-2 category is current but for mainland China and India.  There was significant movement for mainland China in the EB-2 category which moved from July 15, 2012 to Dec. 15, 2012, and for India, which moved from Nov. 1, 2007 to June 1, 2008.

In the EB-3 category, the cutoff date for worldwide chargeability, as well as El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras, and Mexico moved five months from July 1, 2016 to Dec. 1, 2016.  The cutoff dates for mainland China and the Philippines both had significant movement, with nearly eleven months for both, with China advancing from April 15, 2013 to March 15, 2014, and the Philippines advancing from April 1, 2011 to March 15, 2012.

For those in the EB-5 category, the priority date remains current for all applicants other than those born in mainland China, which moved its cutoff date by almost two months from March 8, 2014 to May 1, 2014.

For those seeking to adjust status, The United States Citizenship and Immigration Service (USCIS) website indicates that the Department’s Application Final Action Dates chart must be used for filing Form I-485.  This has not yet been updated with the March 2017 dates; however, we anticipate that USCIS will continue to follow Application Final Action Dates for March as well.

Final Action Dates for Employment-Based Preference Cases

immi blog march

Dates for Filing of Employment-Based Visa Applications

visa bulletin

ARTICLE BY Patricia A. Elmas of Greenberg Traurig, LLP

© 2017 Greenberg Traurig, LLP. All rights reserved.

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