Sunday, June 30, 2013

August 2013 VB Contest

Hey everyone, August Visa Bulletin Contest is still open. All you have to do is guess the date for EB2 India in August 2013 VB. The first person to guess the date (or the closest date) wins $25 gift card from Amazon.

Our July 2013 VB contest winner to win $25 Amazon gift card was user pm86.

This contest is open to anyone, anywhere in the world. To enter the contest, please click the link below:

http://www.mygcvisa.com/forum/default.aspx?g=topics&f=21


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Saturday, June 29, 2013

Child Status Protection Act (CSPA)

The Child Status Protection Act (CSPA) amended the Immigration Nationality Act by changing how an alien is determined to be a child for purposes of immigrant classification.   The Act permits an applicant for certain benefits to retain classification as a “child,” even if he or she has reached the age of 21.

Since its enactment on Aug. 6, 2002, USCIS provided several field guidance memoranda regarding the adjudication of immigration benefits in accordance with the CSPA.   A memo issued April 30, 2008 made some substantive changes to how USCIS applies CSPA.

Q:   What is the Child Status Protection Act (CSPA)?
A.
A “child” is defined as an individual who is unmarried and under the age of 21.  Before CSPA took effect on August 6, 2002, a beneficiary who turned 21 at any time prior to receiving permanent residence could not be considered a child for immigration purposes.  This situation is described as “aging out.”  Congress recognized that many beneficiaries were aging out because of large backlogs and long processing times for visa petitions.  CSPA is designed to protect a beneficiary’s immigration classification as a child when he or she ages out due to excessive processing times.  CSPA can protect “child” status for family-based immigrants, employment-based immigrants, and some humanitarian program immigrants (refugees, asylees, VAWA).

Q. How to qualify for CSPA?
A. Please see the table below
 
Immediate Relative
Preference Classification for Permanent Residence or Derivative
  • If the petition (Form I-130, Petition for Alien Relative) was filed by a U.S. citizen parent for his or her child, the beneficiary’s age “freezes” on the date of filing.
  • If the petition (Form I-130) was filed by a permanent resident parent and the parent naturalizes before the beneficiary turns 21, the beneficiary’s age “freezes” on the date the petitioner naturalized.
  • CSPA allows the time a visa petition was pending to be subtracted from the beneficiary’s biological age at the time of visa availability so that the applicant is not penalized for the time in which USCIS did not adjudicate the petition.



Q.   What are the eligibility criteria for CSPA?
A.   Several requirements must be met to be eligible for CSPA age out protection:
  • Must be the beneficiary of a pending or approved visa petition on or after August 6, 2002.
  • The beneficiary must not have had a final decision on an application for adjustment of status or an immigrant visa before August 6, 2002.
  • The child must “seek to acquire” permanent residence within 1 year of a visa becoming available.  USCIS interprets “seek to acquire” as having a Form I-824, Application for Action on an Approved Application or Petition, filed on the child’s behalf or the filing of a Form I-485, Application to Register Permanent Residence or Adjust Status, or submit Form DS-230, Application for Immigrant Visa and Alien Registration from the Department of State.  The date of visa availability means the first day of the first month a visa in the appropriate category was listed as available in the Department of State’s visa bulletin or the date the visa petition was approved, whichever is later.

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Friday, June 28, 2013

CIS Ombudsman 2013 Annual Report

The Office of the Citizenship and Immigration Services Ombudsman recently published its 2013 Annual Report.

If you did not know the CIS ombudsman is Maria M. Odom.

The report includes all EB, FB, DACA and other categories. It also talks about RFE, processing times, etc.

Please see the link below:

http://aila.org/content/default.aspx?docid=44948

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Thursday, June 27, 2013

Senate Passed CIR Bill

As expected Senate passed the Comprehensive Immigration Reform (CIR) bill today. The vote was 68 - 32. All 52 democrats, 2 independents and 14 republicans voted yes. Thirty-two Republicans voted against the measure, including every single member of the leadership.

The Senate conducted a rare seated vote where senators have to sit at their desks and immediately declare their vote when the clerk calls their name.

The bill’s sponsors expanded the pool of Republican support earlier this week by amending the legislation to authorize 20,000 additional border patrol agents and the construction of 700 miles of fencing along the southern border. The amendment also ensured that immigrants could not claim Social Security benefits for the time they worked in the country illegally.

That fell short of the demands of a majority of Republicans who called for a guarantee of 100 percent situational awareness, or full monitoring, and a 90-percent apprehension rate of illegal entrants be achieved along the southern border before granting permanent legal status to millions of immigrants.

The legislation received another boost last week when the Congressional Budget Office estimated it would reduce the deficit by $197 billion over the next decade and by $700 billion between 2024 and 2033.

 “It is not a bill that reflects a commitment to a lawful system of immigration in the future,” he said on the Senate floor. “We will admit dramatically more people than we ever have in our country’s history at a time when unemployment is high and the Congressional Budget Office have told us that wages, average wages will go down for 12 years, that gross domestic product per capita will decline for 25-plus years.”

Some Republicans complained that Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) shut down the amendment process. The Senate voted on only 10 of the more than 500 amendments filed to the bill.


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Monday, June 24, 2013

Immigration News Update 6/1 - 6/24

Senate CIR Bill: CIR bill has been introduced in Senate. As of  June  21, 478 amendments (changes) were introduced to the bill. However only about 20 amendments have been voted on so far. The senate leaders are confident that they can pass the bill in Senate by July 4. Latest reports says that they have around 70 votes to pass the bill (only 60 votes is required to pass the bill).

House CIR Bill: House leaders have made a decision to not take up Senate CIR bill. They however are still not clear on which direction to go: piecemeal bills or another comprehensive reform bill. The House Judiciary Committee have started working on following piecemeal bills: HR 1773, 1760, 1812, 1923 and 2131.

You can read about the current state of CIR bill here: http://blog.mygcvisa.com/2013/05/current-state-of-cir-bill-part-3.html

AILA Conference: American Immigration Lawyers Association will have their annual conference from June 26 to 29 in San Francisco, CA. Hopefully we can get more information from Charles Oppenheim about future visa bulletin date movements for EB/FB categories. You can view more details about the conference here: http://www.aila.org/content/default.aspx


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Friday, June 21, 2013

USCIS I-485 & I-140 Processing Statistics As Of 04/30/13


USCIS I-140 Processing Statistics as of 04/30/2013


 TSC NSC National
Pending 6,894 4,387 11,334
Customer action waiting 1,534 3,122 4,656
Completed 4,792 3,991 8,786
New receipts 3,208 2,189 5,397


USCIS EB I-485 Processing Statistics as of 04/30/2013


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Wednesday, June 19, 2013

DACA Processing Statistics As Of 5/30/13

If you dont know what DACA is, please read FAQ for Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals

The following show total receipts and approvals as of 05/30/2013. This update also shows the applicants by country.

Total Received: 539,128 (On April 30, 2013: 515,922)
Total Accepted: 520,157 (On April 30, 2013: 497,960)

Approvals: 365, 237 (On 4/30/13: 291,859)
Denied: 3,816 (On 4/30/13: 2,352)

The following is the trend: Total applications received show a slow-down; however in last 3 month, the USCIS approved over 143,000 applications.

Data below was generated on June 10, 2013.

Tip: Click image to enlarge.



Top 10 Countries of Origin: Asian countries include India, Pakistan, Philippines and South Korea.




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Sunday, June 16, 2013

Part 2: EB2 India, China, ROW: Visa Bulletin Movement August - December 2013


If you missed part 1, please click here: http://blog.mygcvisa.com/2013/06/eb2-india-prediction-2013-2014.html

Q. What about processing time?
A. USCIS time to process I-485 application is already long (around 7 months at TSC). Due to large volume of applications from EB3 (ROW, China, Mexico) and EB2 India, processing time could slightly increase. Processing time is (supposed to be) updated every month. You can find the latest processing time here: https://egov.uscis.gov/cris/processTimesDisplayInit.do

Q. Why are processing time not updated every month?
A. Three possible reasons: (1) They do update data but  forget to change the "last updated date" (2) There is no change in processing time since they last updated it few months back (3) They did not have the time to update the dates. Scenario (2) is most likely scenario.

Q. Can I-485 application be processed faster?
A. Some applicants call USCIS repeatedly and open service request (even if they are within the processing time frame). This only helps in increasing the hold time when calling USCIS call center (since they keep the phone line busy). USCIS will run all the required checks and processes that they have established before approving I-485 applications. They are not going to skip this process (since it is part of national security checks). If your processing time is outside the average processing time listed on the official site, please open a service request.

Q. Is there a possibility of spillover to EB3 category in FY2013?
A. Remember USCIS cannot assign visas to applicants whose PD is after the VB cutoff dates (even if there are lots of spillovers remaining). In case EB2 India cannot use (approximately 12,000+) spillovers, it will flow to EB2 China. EB2 China will use up remaining spillovers until the cutoff date for EB2 China mentioned in VB. If there are still spillovers remaining then it will flow to EB3 categories.

Due to lag in various USCIS departments, it may take some time to calculate how much visas can flow to EB3 category. If they dont identify unused spillovers before Sept 30, then these visas will be wasted. If spillovers flow to EB3 category then EB3 ROW, EB3 China and EB3 Mexico could finally move ahead in Sept VB.


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EB2 India, China, ROW: Visa Bulletin Movement August - December 2013 - Part 1 of 2

For part 2 of this article, please click here: http://blog.mygcvisa.com/2013/06/eb2-india-prediction-2013-2014-part2.html
 
We have received many questions on EB2 India Visa Bulletin movement. So we decided to create two-part post exclusive to all EB2 categories and help answer many questions.

For EB3 Categories Future Visa Bulletin movement (May to Oct 2013), please click here: http://blog.mygcvisa.com/2013/04/eb3-visa-bulletin-predictions.html (updated June 15).

For USCIS/DOS prediction for Aug-Oct 2013 VB, please click here: http://blog.mygcvisa.com/2013/06/uscis-prediction-for-august-to-october.html

Fiscal Year 2013:

Every year EB categories is assigned 140,000 visas. In addition, they receive any visas unused by FB category in the previous fiscal year. In FY 2013, EB received 18,000 unused visas from FB category.

FB spillover rules: All categories and countries will get equal distribution up to a maximum limit of 7% per country (please see link above).

EB spillover rules: EB4 + EB5 --> EB1 --> EB2 --> EB3

When EB spillover flows to EB2 categories, all countries in EB2 will get a max of 7% country limit. Remaining unused visas will then flow across to most retrogressed country in EB2 (which is India and China). However, since EB2 China is at 2008 and EB2 India is at 2004, all of the remaining spillovers will first go to EB 2 India until its cutoff date is same as EB2 China (Aug 2008).

After that both countries will get equal spillovers. If there is any spillovers left (which will happen when dates for all EB2 countries are current or EB2 cannot use all spillovers), then it will flow to EB3 category.

EB2 ROW: EB2 ROW is expected to remain current in FY 2013. It should also remain current from Oct - Dec 2013. However from January 2014 - March 2014, if demand is high, EB2 ROW could retrogress slightly. If EB2 ROW retrogress there is a high chance that EB2 India and EB2 China could become unavailable. This is because India and China have the highest demand. Hence they would be the first two countries to use up available visas; thus making any more visas unavailable. Remember DOS allocates 140,000 visas by every quarter (about 27%).

EB2 China: Demand from EB2 China is much lower than EB2 India. Hence it could continue to move around 6 - 9 weeks per month from August to December 2013 and finally move ahead of EB3 China.

EB2 India: Expected spillover to EB2 India in FY2013 is around 12,750-14,110 visas. This could potentially move dates to around January 2008 - April 2008. Please note that this spillover is entirely due to 18,000 visas spillover from FB categories. If there was no FB spillovers, EB2 India could have retrogressed further.

Q. Will EB2 India dates move immediately to Feb/Apr 2008 in August VB?
A. DOS (Charles Oppenheim) can move dates in two ways: (a) Move date immediately to Feb/Apr 2008 in Aug VB (b) Use a staggered approach. First move date to around January 01, 2008 in Aug VB. Wait and see the demand from both EB2 India applicants and applicants porting from EB3 India. If demand is within estimated range, then move it to around Feb/Apr 208 in Sept VB.

The second scenario (moving date to 01/01/08 in Aug VB is most likely).

As per July demand data, there are more than 41,000 preadjudicated cases in EB3 India till Aug 2007. So porting rate plays a big role in movement of EB2 India in Sept VB. If demand is very high from porting applicants, DOS could slightly retrogress dates in Sept VB for EB2 India. Porting is and is likely to continue to be a wildcard in EB2 India category.

Update (June 27): EB2 India is expected to reach Jan 1, 2008 in the Aug VB.

Q. Would all spillovers go to applications filed in USCIS service center (TSC, NSC, etc)?
A. Typically 15% of total spillovers will also go to consular processing cases in US embassy. This leaves around 85% of total spillovers assigned to applications in USCIS service centers. Remember in some categories, around 40% of total visas go to consular processing cases.


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Wednesday, June 12, 2013

August 2013 Visa Bulletin Predictions

For July 2013 Visa Bulletin, please click here: http://blog.mygcvisa.com/2013/06/july-2013-visa-bulletin.html

For August 2013 Visa Bulletin, please click here: http://blog.mygcvisa.com/2013/07/visa-bulletin-august-2013.html

Please see below prediction for August 2013 Visa Bulletin (for both Family Based and Employment Based):

Quick Summary:
  • EB1, EB4, EB 5: Current
  • EB2 Rest Of World: Current
    EB2 China: 7 weeks (still behind EB3 China)
    EB2 India: It could move to around Feb 2008 in Aug/Sept VB. See article: EB2 India Analysis & Prediction
  • EB3 (ROW, China, Mexico): 0 day
    EB3 India: 3 weeks
    EB3 Philippines: 2 weeks
  • FB categories: 1 week to 4 months
  • F2A: It could be current in Aug/Sept VB. See article: F2A Analysis

Please Note: These numbers includes the 18,000 additional visas (spillovers) from FB category to EB category. USCIS seems to have slowly started applying these spillovers to EB categories.

Family Based:

Family-Sponsored All Chargeability Areas Except Those Listed CHINA- mainland born INDIA MEXICO PHILIPPINES
F1 01JUL06 01JUL06 01JUL06 01SEP93 01DEC00
F2A C C C C C
F2B 01FEB06 01FEB06 01FEB06 01FEB94 15FEB03
F3 01NOV02 01NOV02 01NOV02 22MAY93 15DEC92
F4 15JUN01 15JUN01 15JUN01 01OCT96 22JAN90

Employment Based: 


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Monday, June 10, 2013

Analysis: Visa Bulletin July 2013

For July 2013 Visa Bulletin, please click here: http://blog.mygcvisa.com/2013/06/july-2013-visa-bulletin.html

EB1: All EB1 categories continues to remain current. Though EB1 China and EB1 India have already used up their annual quota (and currently using visas from EB1 ROW since January 2013), this category should continue to remain current this fiscal year. However this would affect amount of spillovers to EB2 categories.

EB5: This category continues to remain current. Since demand is 75% higher than last fiscal year (according to Charles Oppenheim), the amount of spillover to EB2 category would be much lower than last year.

EB4: This category continues to remain current.

EB2 ROW: This category continues to remain current.  Due to expected EB/FB spillovers, we do not expect this category to retrogress. However, due to retrogression in EB2 ROW last year, it would be consuming more visas than it did last fiscal year.

EB2 India: As per Charles Oppenheims predictions, there was (again) no movement in this category. You can read this article on why EB2 India is not moving forward since May 2012. However EB2 India should FINALLY move forward in the August and most likely September visa bulletin (due to EB spillovers). We will be adding a blog post on this soon.

EB2 China: EB2 China moved forward by only 3 weeks this month. Since EB2 China has already reached 2008, all of the EB/FB spillover from EB1, EB4 and EB5 should go to EB2 India. EB2 China is likely to move forward at 6-9 weeks per month.


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Saturday, June 8, 2013

July 2013 VB Contest Winner

The first person to correctly guess EB2 India date in July 2013 visa bulletin was username pm86.

Congratulation!! We have sent you $25 Amazon gift card by email. Happy Shopping!!

Anyone can win August 2013 VB contest. Just guess ANY date between Sept 2004 and April 2008. Please click the link or image below to enter this contest:

http://www.mygcvisa.com/forum/default.aspx?g=topics&f=21



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Friday, June 7, 2013

USCIS Prediction For August To October 2013 Visa Bulletin

For official July 2013 Visa bulletin, please click here: http://blog.mygcvisa.com/2013/06/july-2013-visa-bulletin.html

For August 2013 Visa Bulletin, please click here: http://blog.mygcvisa.com/2013/07/visa-bulletin-august-2013.html

Department of State released their prediction for August to October 2013 Visa Bulletin. Please see details below: 

FAMILY-sponsored categories (potential monthly movement)

Worldwide dates:
  • F1: Up to five weeks
  • F2A: Could become “Current” at some point during the coming months.
  • F2B: Four to seven weeks
  • F3: Three to five weeks
  • F4: Three to five weeks

EMPLOYMENT-based categories (potential monthly movement)

Employment First:  Current 

Employment Second:


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July 2013 Visa Bulletin

For analysis of July 2013 Visa Bulletin, please click here: http://blog.mygcvisa.com/2013/06/analysis-visa-bulletin-july-2013.html

For August 2013 Visa Bulletin, please click here: http://blog.mygcvisa.com/2013/07/visa-bulletin-august-2013.html

July 2013 Visa bulletin has been officially released (valid from July 1 to July 31 only). Please see below for more details.

Family Based:


Family-Sponsored All Charge-ability Areas Except Those Listed CHINA- mainland born INDIA MEXICO PHILIPPINES
F1 01JUN06 01JUN06 01JUN06 22AUG93 01JUL00
F2A 08OCT11 08OCT11 08OCT11 01SEP11 08OCT11
F2B 01NOV05 01NOV05 01NOV05 01NOV93 22DEC02
F3 01OCT02 01OCT02 01OCT02 22APR93 22NOV92
F4 22MAY01 22MAY01 22MAY01 22SEP96 15DEC89
 
Employment Based:


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July 2013 Demand Data

Demand Data for July 2013 Visa Bulletin has been released. Please see details below:




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Thursday, June 6, 2013

EB2 India Visa Bulletin Movement from July To September 2013

Update (6/16/13): This blog post has been updated. Please click here: http://blog.mygcvisa.com/2013/06/eb2-india-prediction-2013-2014.html

Update (6/6/13):  According to Charles Oppenheim, dates for EB2 India could move as far as Feb 2008 in next few visa bulletins:

http://www.fragomen.com/SnapshotFiles/32e715a9-8b61-4b5b-8c77-980daa8b1b3e/Subscriber.snapshot?clid=5dc90fc9-8ae6-4e70-9dea-d99821dd2cc4&cid=6a13a1c1-d1d8-422f-ab63-4805a0a37e0b&ce=7Z3f5qM2QzWRq6yZI%2bi7U685P2fN5Gh6

You can join us in discussion here: http://www.mygcvisa.com/forum/default.aspx?g=posts&t=9#post16

This is opposite of what two law firms said when they met with Charles Oppenheim last month. Please see below.

Original Post (5/15/13):

Two law firms are reporting that they met with Charles Oppenheim in April/May and he said that EB2 India would only move by few weeks this fiscal year. We are not sure if this estimate is accurate.

Links:

1. Ware/Gasparian: http://david-ware.com/immigration-information/breaking-news/june-visa-bulletin-shows-significant-advances-0

2. Ron Gotcher (see page 1 and 2): http://www.immigration-information.com/forums/forum/immigrant-issues/visa-quota-and-cutoff-date-issues/120585-eb-2-india-any-chances-of-movement-in-june-vb

Update: Ron's link above has been deleted. However, you can still see a copy of it here.


Lets look at some numbers for EB2 India:

Supply:

EB2 India gets 2802 visas every year (7% * 28.6% * 140,000)
FB spillover: 361
EB Spillover: varies

Total Supply = 3163 + EB spillovers


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Monday, June 3, 2013

Guess EB2 Priority Date in July/August 2013 VB And Win Prizes

New Blog Post On June 16 :  EB2 Category Visa Bulletin Movement from August 2013 to December 2013

EB2 India is expected to have big forward movement in the July/August 2013 visa bulletin. The first person to correctly guess the date for EB2 India in July/August 2013 visa bulletin will prizes. Winner will be announced after visa bulletin is released.

Contest Link: http://www.mygcvisa.com/forum/default.aspx?g=topics&f=21

Simple rules:

1. Only one prediction per person.
2. Posting more than once in that thread will disqualify the person.
3. You can edit your post (change your answer) for upto 24 hours after posting.
4. Only prediction in that thread will be considered.
5. Contest will be open until visa bulletin is released. Posts made after each vista bulletin is released will be disqualified.

If no one can guess the correct date, the first person to guess the closest date will win. This means someone is guaranteed to win the prize.


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Sunday, June 2, 2013

Website Feature # 4 - EB/FB Forum

Hey guys and girls, we have just launched EB/FB Forum. It has over 100 features. Some of the important features are:

  • You can send private messages to other members
  • You can use Facebook to login.
  • You can use a display name for all post (instead of your username)
  • You can see whether a user is online or offline
  • You can thank user for a post (equivalent to like on facebook)
  • You can edit/delete your post for 24 hours
  • You can add anyone as friends
  • Each thread has a quick reply at the bottom
  • You can add upto 5 attachments to every post
  • You can share each post on social media (FB, twitter, etc) or email them to friends
  • Each user has a hovercard (similar to facebook) - you see brief information when you hover over user name
  • You can create polls with upto 10 poll choices
  • You can create albums and add pictures to your albums
  • Get RSS feed for all topics/posts
  • System remembers your last visit. So you can directly goto either the first unread post (since last visit) or to last post in a thread.
  • You can select your own post editor
  • You can select your own language
  • You can add your signature to each post.
  • You can add HTML tags in the post
  • Add smilies to your post
  • Get daily digest of posts in the forum 
  • Quote or multiquote one or more posts when composing a reply
  • Tag any thread as favorite (equivalent to browser bookmark)
  • Receive notification on post you are watching or marked as favorite


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