October 2013 Visa Bulletin: FB2A Retrogression

The U.S. Department of State (DOS) Visa Bulletin for October 2013 is the first visa bulletin for fiscal year 2014 (FY14). Under this bulletin, the family-based, second preference "A" (FB2A) category retrogresses in October, while the employment- based (EB) categories are largely stagnant.

Visa Bulletin Summary

Family-Based, Second Preference "A" (FB2A)

The FB2A category for spouses and (unmarried, minor) children of U.S. lawful permanent residents (LPRs or "green card" holders) retrogresses in October 2013. This is consistent with earlier projections by the DOS regarding the expected need to set a cutoff date in this category. Fortunately, the retrogression is quite slight as of October, with a cutoff date of September 8, 2013 for all countries of chargeability, with the exception of Mexico. Mexico's cutoff date is September 1, 2013.

This is an important change for individuals who are eligible to file cases in the FB2A category. It remains possible to concurrently file an I-130 family petition with an I-485 adjustment of status application through the end of September 2013, only. Individuals with questions about this are encouraged to schedule a consultation with a Murthy Law Firm attorney.

Employment-Based, First Preference (EB1)

This category remains current for all countries of chargeability.

Employment-Based, Second Preference (EB2)

EB2 continues to be current for all countries of chargeability, except India and China. The EB2 India cutoff date remains unchanged at June 15, 2008, after a period of advancement. China's EB2 cutoff date advances by just over a month, to September 15, 2008.

Employment-Based, Third Preference (EB3)

After some significant forward movement at the end of fiscal year 2013, the October Visa Bulletin reflects no changes in the EB3 category, with the exception of a couple of weeks' advancement to December 15, 2006 for the Philippines. The cutoff date for all chargeability areas except those listed, as well as China and Mexico, remains at July 1, 2010. India's cutoff date continues to be September 22, 2003.

Other Workers Category

With the exception of China, the EB3 other workers' cutoff dates are the same as the general EB3 cutoff dates. The EB3 other workers' category cutoff date for China advances to September 22, 2004.

Employment-Based, Fourth (EB4) and Fifth (EB5) Preferences

These categories remain current for all countries of chargeability.

Conclusion

While those whose priority dates are not current may be disappointed with the October Visa Bulletin, the lack of further forward movement was expected. The stability of these cutoff dates, without further retrogression in the EB2 and EB3 categories, is good news for those with current cases who need time to file the I-485 form or obtain an I-485 approval. The Murthy Law Firm continues to see green card approvals as a result of the advancements in cutoff dates seen in August and September 2013. The retrogression in the FB2A category was expected. It is important to act quickly under this category to avoid delays in the ability to file the I-485.

The October 2013 Visa Bulletin does not provide any predictions for further cutoff date movements during the upcoming fiscal year. Watch MurthyDotCom for updates as these matters are closely tracked for the benefit of our readers.

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Disclaimer: The information provided here is of a general nature and may not apply to any specific or particular circumstance. It is not to be construed as legal advice nor presumed indefinitely up to date.

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