June 2019 Visa Bulletin Updates on EB-5 Retrogression
The U.S. Department of State just released the updated Visa Bulletin for June 2019. The monthly updated waiting list provides the latest information for foreign nationals who seek to become U.S. permanent residents by applying for immigrant visas at U.S. consulates and embassies abroad or filing adjustment of status applications. The Visa Bulletin for the coming month is normally updated on or about the tenth of each month with information on cutoff dates for the following month.
The priority dates per Chart A (Final Action Dates) remain current for investors born in all other countries except the following:
Mainland China-Born Investors
Mainland China-born investors’ EB-5 waiting line continued to see slow progress with the projected June 2019 Visa Bulletin, moving one week forward to Oct. 1, 2014. This means Mainland China-born investors with priority dates of Oct. 1, 2014, or earlier are eligible to be scheduled for immigrant visa interviews at consular posts or file adjustment of status applications if they are in valid status in the United States, or wait for the adjudication of their AOS applications if previously submitted.
Like China, Vietnam continued to see slow cutoff date forward movement, progressing 9 days from Sept. 22, 2016, to Oct. 1, 2016.
There is still no visa backlog for Indian investors in June 2019, which is good news. However, pursuant to a prediction from Charles Oppenheim, Chief of the Visa Control and Reporting Division, U.S. Department of State, it is likely to institute a cutoff date in the Visa Bulletin for the first time in July 2019.
The current priority date cutoff date per Chart B (Dates for filing) of the Visa Bulletin moves a little faster. For Mainland China-born investors, the priority date is Nov. 1, 2014, moved up by 17 days. The priority dates remain current for investors born in all other countries including Vietnam. Chart B enables Vietnamese investors who are in valid nonimmigrant status in the United States and wish to process the green card application without leaving United States to file AOS applications. However, Chart B is not available all the time. For the month of June, USCIS does not permit the use of Chart B for AOS applications. Normally, USCIS will designate one of the two charts each month within one week of the publication of the Visa Bulletin. We will be closely monitoring the Visa Bulletin and advise once Chart B is open.
There is also a backlog in EB-5 processing time. Currently, the average processing time for an I-526 petition ranges from 22 to 28.5 months, as shown in the below screenshot from the USCIS website. The current processing time is 1.5 months to 2 months slower compared to the time in April. USCIS will accept a case inquiry for outside normal processing time with a receipt date of Jan. 24, 2017, or earlier. For a receipt date of Jan. 25, 2017, USCIS will not respond to the email inquiry regarding the long processing time.