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EIG Special Alert: October 2015 Visa Bulletin Released (New Procedures)

September 9, 2015

October 2015 Visa Bulletin Released with Changes

The U.S. Department of State has released the October 2015 Visa Bulletin. In coordination with USCIS the Department of State has implemented “pre-registration” with the new October 2015 Visa Bulletin.  The new visa bulletin contains two charts – one pertaining to application acceptance cut-off dates and one pertaining to application approval cut-off dates. You can file your Adjustment of Status application if your Priority Date is current under the “acceptance” chart, but your application will be approved once your priority date is current under the “approval” chart.


In the October 2015 Visa Bulletin, China sees significant advancements in the EB-2 and EB-3 categories, while India retrogresses. The Visa Bulletin can be summarized as follows:

Application Final Action Dates (consistent with prior Visa Bulletins, dates when visas may be issued)

EB-1

  • All countries remain current.

EB-2

  • Persons in the EB-2 category and born in China are current if they have a priority date before the cut-off date of January 1, 2012. This category has advanced by 6 years. 
  • Persons in the EB-2 category and born in India are current if they have a priority date before the cut-off date of May 1, 2005. This category has retrogressed by 8 months. 
  • The worldwide quota, Mexico, and the Philippines remain current.

EB-3

  • Persons in the EB-3 category and falling into the worldwide quota are current if they have a priority date before the cut-off date of August 15, 2015. This category remains unchanged.
  • Persons in the EB-3 category and born in China are current if they have a priority date before the cut-off date of October 15, 2011. This category has advanced by 6 years 9 months 23 days. 
  • Persons in the EB-3 category and born in India are current if they have a priority date before the cut-off date of March 8, 2004. This category has retrogressed by 9 months 14 days.
  • Persons in the EB-3 category and born in Mexico are current if they have a priority date before the cut-off date of August 15, 2015. This category remains unchanged.
  • Persons in the EB-3 category and born in the Philippines are current if they have a priority date before the cut-off date of January 1, 2007. This category has advanced by 2 years 10 days. 

EB-4 

  • All countries remain current.

EB-5

  • Persons in the EB-5 category and born in China are current if they have a priority date before the cut-off date of October 8, 2013. This category has advanced by 16 days. 
  • The worldwide quota, India, Mexico, and the Philippines remain current.

Dates for Filing Applications (earliest dates when applicants may be able to apply)

Highlights:  Although visa numbers are not available, you can still file your Adjustment of Status application if your priority date is earlier than:

EB-1

  • All countries are current.

EB-2

  • Persons in the EB-2 category and born in China are current if they have a priority date before the cut-off date of May 1, 2014.
  • Persons in the EB-2 category and born in India are current if they have a priority date before the cut-off date of July 1, 2011.
  • The worldwide quota, Mexico, and the Philippines are current.

EB-3

  • Persons in the EB-3 category and falling into the worldwide quota are current if they have a priority date before the cut-off date of September 1, 2015.
  • Persons in the EB-3 category and born in China are current if they have a priority date before the cut-off date of October 1, 2013.
  • Persons in the EB-3 category and born in India are current if they have a priority date before the cut-off date of July 1, 2005.
  • Persons in the EB-3 category and born in Mexico are current if they have a priority date before the cut-off date of September 1, 2015.
  • Persons in the EB-3 category and born in the Philippines are current if they have a priority date before the cut-off date of January 1, 2015.

EB-4 

  • All countries are current.

EB-5

  • Persons in the EB-5 category and born in China are current if they have a priority date before the cut-off date of May 1, 2015.
  • The worldwide quota, India, Mexico, and the Philippines remain current.

The complete Visa Bulletin for October 2015 can be found here. A more detailed synthesis of the reform will be discussed in this week’s Dispatch Issue 110. Stay Tuned!