Wednesday, December 31, 2014

Latest USCIS Visa Bulletin Predictions

The American Immigration Lawyers Association (AILA) recently met again with Charles Oppenheim to discuss the current demand and expected movements in various visa bulletin categories.

Charles Oppenheim is the Chief of the Visa Control and Reporting Division within Department of State (DOS). Please see the important details below:

EB2 India: Due to heavy demand (mostly from EB3 India applicant upgrading to EB2 India), DOS had to retrogress dates to February 2005. Date are expected to move forward around July 2015 (when it is expected to receive spillovers from other unused EB categories).

The good news is that DOS is currently considering moving the dates forward earlier in the year instead of waiting till last quarter of FY 2015. The main reason for waiting till Q4 2015 is that it gives DOS a good understanding of demand in other EB categories and help estimate unused visas and spillovers to other categories.


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Monday, December 29, 2014

PERM Processing Statistics As Of 9/30/2014


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Friday, December 26, 2014

DHS Announces Temporary Protected Status Designations for Liberia, Guinea, and Sierra Leone

From USCIS: Due to the outbreak of Ebola virus disease in West Africa, Secretary of Homeland Security Jeh Johnson has announced his decision to designate Liberia, Guinea, and Sierra Leone for Temporary Protected Status (TPS) for 18 months.

As a result, eligible nationals of Liberia, Guinea, and Sierra Leone who are currently residing in the United States may apply for TPS with U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS). The Federal Register notices provide details and procedures for applying for TPS and are available at www.uscis.gov/tps.

The TPS designations for the three countries are effective Nov. 21, 2014 and will be in effect for 18 months. The designations mean that eligible nationals of Liberia, Guinea, and Sierra Leone (and people without nationality who last habitually resided in one of those three countries) will not be removed from the United States and are authorized to work and obtain an Employment Authorization Document (EAD). The 180-day TPS registration period begins Nov. 21, 2014 and runs through May 20, 2015.

To be eligible for TPS, applicants must demonstrate that they satisfy all eligibility criteria, including that they have been “continuously residing” in the United States since Nov. 20, 2014 and “continuously physically present in” the United States since Nov. 21, 2014.


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Wednesday, December 24, 2014

USCIS Approves 10,000 U Visas for 6th Straight Fiscal Year

From USCIS: U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) has approved the statutory maximum of 10,000 petitions for U-1 nonimmigrant status (U visas) for fiscal year 2015. This marks the sixth straight year that USCIS has reached the statutory maximum since it began issuing U visas in 2008.

Each year, 10,000 U visas are available for victims of certain qualifying crimes who have suffered substantial mental or physical abuse and are willing to help law enforcement authorities investigate or prosecute those crimes. A U visa petition requires certification that the victim has been helpful to law enforcement.

Although USCIS has reached the statutory cap of 10,000 U visas, it will continue to review pending petitions for eligibility. For eligible petitioners who cannot be granted a U-1 visas solely because of the cap, USCIS will send a letter notifying them that they are on a waiting list to receive a U visa when visas become available again.

The letter will also inform the petitioners of options available to them while they are on the waiting list. Petitioners and qualifying family members must continue to meet eligibility requirements at the time the U visa is issued.


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Monday, December 22, 2014

Annual Report of Immigrant Visa Applicants in the EB Category registered at NVC as of November 1, 2014

The following figures have been compiled from the NVC report submitted to the Department on November 1, 2014, and show the number of immigrant visa applicants on the waiting list in the various preferences and subcategories subject to numerical limit.

All figures reflect persons registered under each respective numerical limitation, i.e., the totals represent not only principal applicants or petition beneficiaries, but their spouses and children entitled to derivative status under INA 203(d) as well.





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Friday, December 19, 2014

USCIS Announces 68 Countries Eligible to Participate in the H-2A and H-2B Visa Programs

From USCIS: USCIS and the Department of Homeland Security, in consultation with the Department of State, has added the Czech Republic, Denmark, Madagascar, Portugal, and Sweden to the list of countries whose nationals are eligible to participate in the H-2A and H-2B Visa programs for the coming year. The notice listing the 68 eligible countries published on Dec. 16, 2014 in the Federal Register.

The H-2A and H-2B Visa programs allow U.S. employers to bring foreign nationals to the United States to fill temporary agricultural and nonagricultural jobs, respectively. USCIS only approves H-2A and H-2B petitions for nationals of countries the Secretary of Homeland Security has designated as eligible to participate in the programs.

USCIS may approve H-2A and H-2B petitions for nationals of countries not on the list if it is determined to be in the interest of the United States.


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Wednesday, December 17, 2014

Annual Report of Immigrant Visa Applicants in the FB Category registered at NVC as of November 1, 2014

The following figures have been compiled from the NVC report submitted to the Department on November 1, 2014, and show the number of immigrant visa applicants on the waiting list in the various preferences and subcategories subject to numerical limit.

All figures reflect persons registered under each respective numerical limitation, i.e., the totals represent not only principal applicants or petition beneficiaries, but their spouses and children entitled to derivative status under INA 203(d) as well.





Immigrant Waiting List By Country

The ten countries with the highest number of Family - sponsored waiting list registrants are listed below; together these represent 74.6 % of the total. This list includes all countries with at least 100,000 persons on the waiting list.


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Monday, December 15, 2014

EB-5 Regional Centers Must File Form I-924A by December 29

From USCIS: USCIS reminds all approved EB-5 regional centers with a designation letter dated on or before Sept. 30, 2014, that they must file Form I-924A, Supplement to Form I-924, for fiscal year 2014. Regional centers must submit Form I-924A no later than Dec. 29, 2014.

If a regional center fails to file Form I-924A, USCIS will issue a notice of intent to terminate participation in the EB-5 Immigrant Investor Program. If a regional center files an incomplete Form I-924A, USCIS may issue a notice of intent to terminate participation.

Notice About Terminated Regional Centers

A regional center that has been terminated from the EB-5 program may not solicit, generate or promote investors or investments for any other EB-5-related projects, or otherwise participate in the Immigrant Investor Program.


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Friday, December 12, 2014

February 2015 Visa Bulletin Predictions

For January 2015 Visa Bulletin, please click here: http://blog.mygcvisa.com/2014/12/january-2015-visa-bulletin.html

For the official February 2015 Visa Bulletin, please click here: http://blog.mygcvisa.com/2015/01/february-2015-visa-bulletin.html

Please see February 2015 Visa Bulletin Predictions below (for both Family Based and Employment Based):

Quick Summary:

Family Based:

Family-Sponsored All Chargeability Areas Except Those Listed CHINA- mainland born INDIA MEXICO PHILIPPINES
F1 01AUG07 01AUG07 01AUG07 08OCT94 08JAN05
F2A 15MAY13 15MAY13 15MAY13 08APR13 15MAY13
F2B 15MAY08 15MAY08 15MAY08 01DEC94 22FEB04
F3 01JAN04 01JAN04 01JAN04 01JAN94 22JUL93
F4 15APR02 15APR02 15APR02 08APR97 22AUG91

Employment Based:


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Thursday, December 11, 2014

January 2015 Visa Bulletin Analysis

For January 2015 Visa Bulletin, please click here: http://blog.mygcvisa.com/2014/12/january-2015-visa-bulletin.html

Please see below analysis of January 2015 Visa Bulletin:

EB1: All EB1 categories are current and should continue to remain current for fiscal year. Demand continues to be around 1200-1400 every month (per the latest pending inventory).

EB2 ROW: This category continues to remain current. Demand in EB2ROW continues to be very low at an average of around 800 per month. 

EB2 China: EB2 China moved forward by 4 weeks in this visa bulletin. It is likely to continue to move forward around 3 to 5 weeks per month.

EB2 India: Also as expected, EB2 India category did not move forward after retrogressing in previous visa bulletin to 15FEB05. We had earlier posted a blog post that EB2 India quota has been used up for fiscal year 2014. This category may not move forward for the next few months.

We have added a blog post exclusive to EB2 India movement in fiscal year 2014. As many of you expected, retrogression was expected in November due to large demand from (a) applicants porting from EB3 India to EB2 India  (since they have been waiting in EB3 India category for more than a decade) and (b) applicants who are filing I-485 for the first time.

Also please see this blog post for updates in EB2 (India, ROW and China) category.


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Sunday, December 7, 2014

January 2015 Visa Bulletin

For December 2015 Visa Bulletin, please click here: http://blog.mygcvisa.com/2014/11/december-2014-visa-bulletin.html

For January 2015 Visa Bulletin Analysis, please click here: http://blog.mygcvisa.com/2014/12/january-2015-visa-bulletin-analysis.html

January 2015 Visa Bulletin has been released (valid from January 1 to January 31 only). Please see below for more details.

Family Based:

Family-Sponsored All Chargeability Areas Except Those Listed CHINA-mainland born INDIA MEXICO PHILIPPINES
F1 08JUL07 08JUL07  08JUL07 15SEP94 22DEC04
F2A 15APR13 15APR13 15APR13 22FEB13 15APR13
F2B 01APR08 01APR08 01APR08 01NOV94  01FEB04
F3 22DEC03 22DEC03 22DEC03 15DEC93 08JUL93
F4 22MAR02 22MAR02 22MAR02 22MAR97 15JUL91

Employment Based:


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Friday, December 5, 2014

Latest DACA Processing Statistics As Of October 2014

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



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Wednesday, December 3, 2014

DHS Publishes Final Rule on Notices of Decisions and Documents Evidencing Lawful Status

Department of Homeland Security recently published a final rule amending its regulations governing when USCIS will
  • correspond with,
  • issue a notice of decision to, or
  • provide documents to
an applicant, petitioner, or requester, and/or an attorney of record or accredited representative.

This final rule explains how USCIS will provide notices to applicants, petitioners or requestors. It also explains how they can consent to have such notices and secure identification documents sent directly to their designated representatives.


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Monday, December 1, 2014

Workload Transfer From the Vermont Service Center to the California Service Center

From USCIS: USCIS recently began transferring some casework from the Vermont Service Center to the California Service Center to balance workloads. The affected casework includes:

How You Will Be Affected
If USCIS transferred your case, they will send you a transfer notice. Your original receipt number will not change and the transfer will not delay the processing of your case. Please note:
  • The words “Case Type: CRI89 Approved Removal of Conditions” will be printed on the transfer notice - this refers to your pending Form I-751.
  • The transfer notice may not contain the receipt number of your pending Form I-751. 

How to Track the Status of Your Case
You can check the status by entering your receipt number in Check Status. You can also sign up to receive automatic case status updates by email.


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