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US Department of State Releases December 2017 Visa Bulletin

EB-1 remains current; “Dates for Filing” chart remains stagnant.

The US Department of State has released its December 2017 Visa Bulletin, setting out per-country priority date cutoffs that regulate immigrant visa availability and the flow of status adjustments and consular immigrant visa application filings and approvals.

What Does the December 2017 Visa Bulletin Say?

The bulletin includes both a Dates for Filing Visa Applications chart and an Application Final Action Dates chart. The former indicates when intending immigrants may file their applications for adjustments of status or immigrant visas, and the latter indicates when adjustment of status applications or immigrant visa applications may be approved and permanent residence granted. Unless otherwise indicated on the US Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) website, individuals seeking to file applications for adjustment of status with USCIS must use the Application Final Action Dates chart below. USCIS has not yet indicated which set of cutoff dates will control in December.

To be eligible to file an employment-based (EB) adjustment application in December 2017, a foreign national must have a priority date that is earlier than the date listed below for his or her preference category and country (changes from last month’s Visa Bulletin are shown in yellow).

Application Final Action Dates

EB

All Charge-
ability
Areas Except
Those Listed

China
(mainland
born)

El Salvador,
Guatemala,
and Honduras

India

Mexico

Philippines

1st

C

C

C

C

C

C

2nd

01JUL3 (was 15JUN13)

C

01NOV08 (was 08OCT08)

C

C

3rd

C

08MAR14 (was 01FEB14)

C

15OCT06

C

05JAN16

Other Workers

C

01JULY06 (was 01APR06)

C

15OCT06

C

01JAN16

Dates for Filing Visa Applications

EB

All Charge-
ability
Areas Except
Those Listed

China
(mainland
born)

India

Mexico

Philippines

1st

C

C

C

C

C

2nd

C

15NOV13

08FEB09

C

C

3rd

C

01SEP15

01JAN08

C

01AUG16

Other Workers

C

01JUN08

01JAN08

C

01AUG16

On the Application Final Action Dates chart, the cutoff dates for EB-1 for all chargeable countries, including India and China, and the EB-2 cutoff dates for the rest of the world, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras, Mexico, and the Philippines allotment will remain “current.” The EB-2 cutoff for China will advance by two weeks to July 1, 2013. Cutoff dates for EB-2 India will move forward three weeks to November 1, 2008.

The EB-3 cutoff dates for the worldwide allotment as well as for El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras, and Mexico will remain “current.” The cutoff date for EB-3 China will advance by five weeks to March 8, 2014, and the cutoff date for EB-3 India will remain at October 15, 2006. The cutoff date for EB-3 Philippines will remain at January 15, 2016.

Note that for China, the EB-3 cutoff dates continue to be ahead of the EB-2 cutoff dates (March 8, 2014 v. July 1, 2013).

The Dates for Filing chart has not changed in several months. Cutoff dates for EB-1 will remain “current” for all chargeable countries, including India and China. The EB-2 cutoff dates for the rest of the world, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras, Mexico, and the Philippines allotment will also remain “current.” Cutoff dates for EB-2 China will remain at November 15, 2013. Cutoff dates for EB-2 India will remain at February 8, 2009. Cutoff dates for EB-3 China will remain at September 1, 2015, and for “other workers” the cutoff dates will remain at June 1, 2008. Cutoff dates for EB-3 India will advance to January 1, 2008. Finally, cutoff dates for EB-3 Philippines will remain at August 1, 2016.

Copyright © 2017 by Morgan, Lewis & Bockius LLP. All Rights Reserved.

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About this Author

Partner

A. James Vázquez-Azpiri is a partner in Morgan Lewis's Labor and Employment Practice. Mr. Vázquez-Azpiri focuses his practice on business immigration law, assisting corporate clients with hiring and retaining foreign employees with regard to labor certifications, specialty occupation petitions and intra-company transfers. Mr. Vázquez-Azpiri is also a leading expert on immigration law compliance in the context of mergers, acquisitions and corporate restructuring. Mr. Vázquez-Azpiri helps clients think and work proactively by providing them with traditional compliance...

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