Saturday, September 15, 2012

Increased Number of Inquiries on Consular Processing of Green Card Applications

  • In some countries, consular processing of immigrant visa takes shorter time than the USCIS EB-485 processing. Also there appears to be their fear of potential delays in processing of pending EB-485 applications as affected by the ongoing massitve DACA filings by the DREAMers that require biometric and security clearance, not to mention processing of massive number of DACA applications themselves. It also appears upcoming new allocation of employment-based immigrant visa quota for FY 2013, which they fear will be exhausted and regressed again sooner or later. Fourth factor appears to be speculation of changes in the employment-based immigration laws. All of the foregoing factors combined triggered their interest in filing immigrant visa application through the American consulates in their home countries.
  • We have just reported the number of preadjudicated EB-485 applications, which will remain more or less untouched at least until October 1, 2012. Readers must have noticed that the numbers are fairly large. Of course, no one knows how many of them represent EB-2 as opposed to EB-3, how many of them have what earlier priority dates, and how many of them involve what nationalities. Since some of these questions can be answered from the USCIS Employment-Based Inventory, they are anxious to see release of the updated Inventory by the USCIS. The latest update was released on May 3, 2012. No one knows exactly when the next update of Inventory will be released, but it is our speculation that it should not take too long to see the inventory update. It is about the time whey the USCIS may release it. Release of the inventory update may give some answers to the third factor, assuming that October Visa Bulletin could look like the picture before EB-2 for ROW regressed and EB-2 for India and China turned "unavailable" in the visa bulletins. As for all other factors, they remain anybody's guess and speculation and no one has any answers. Under the circumstances, readers are advised to take time and exercise precaution before they jump and seek the consular immigrant visa processing. Once the approved I-140 petition file is transferred to the National Visa Center, it will take time for the USCIS to recoup the file from the NVC, and depending on the changed circumstances in the USCIS, they may find they acted too quickly and will have to face additional delays which they would not have experienced, had they acted precautiously. Converting pending EB-485 proceeding to the immigrant visa consular proceeding will also take away all the ancillary benefits that come with the pending I-485 application, including but not limited to EAD, transfer of the pending EB-485 applications to other newly approved I-140 petitions, just to name a few. 

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