Overview of May 2016 Visa Bulletin

As previously noted in the MurthyDotCom NewsBrief, Trend of Sluggish Movement Continues in May 2016 Visa Bulletin (12.Apr.2016), there is almost no change in the dates for filing (DF) chart in the May 2016 Visa Bulletin issued by the U.S. Department of State (DOS). As for the final action (FA) charts, there is once again disappointment in the employment-based, second preference (EB2) category for India, with minimal cutoff date advancement. The only major surprise in this latest visa bulletin is that it carries a new country-specific cutoff in the employment-based categories for El Salvador, Guatemala, and Honduras.

Visa Bulletin Summary

Employment-Based, First and Fourth Preferences (EB1 and EB4)

The EB1 category, as usual, is current for all countries of chargeability under the May 2016 Visa Bulletin. The same is true of the EB4 category, with the exception of the newly added cutoff date of January 1, 2010 for El Salvador, Guatemala, and Honduras. This change is primarily the result of an increasing number of special immigrant juvenile cases from those three Central American countries.

Employment-Based, Second Preference (EB2)

As expected, EB2 remains current in May 2016 for all countries, with the exception of India and China. China’s EB2 FA cutoff date of September 1, 2012 is unchanged. EB2 India’s FA cutoff date again moves by only a few weeks, to November 22, 2008.

Employment-Based, Third Preference (EB3)

The EB3 worldwide category FA cutoff date of February 15, 2016 is unchanged, but still very favorable for individuals in this category. This FA cutoff date also applies to EB3 Mexico, El Salvador, Guatemala, and Honduras. EB3 India’s FA cutoff date moves a bit, to September 1, 2004, while the cutoff date in this category for the Philippines advances by several months, to August 8, 2008. For China, the EB3 cutoff date in the FA chart remains unchanged, at August 15, 2013.

Employment-Based, Third Preference (EB3) Other Workers

With the exception of China, the EB3 other workers cutoff dates match the general EB3 cutoff dates. For China, the cutoff date advances by almost two months in the FA chart, to April 22, 2007. In the DF chart, the EB3 other workers category for China moves to April 1, 2008. This is the only movement in the DF chart in the May 2016 Visa Bulletin.

Employment-Based, Fifth Preference (EB5)

The EB5 category remains current, with the exception of EB5 for China. China’s EB5 cutoff date in the FA chart advances by a week, to February 8, 2014.


As of this writing, the U.S. Citizenship Immigration Services (USCIS) has not announced whether the cutoff dates in the DF charts may be used as a basis for filing an adjustment-of-status application (form I-485) in May. MurthyDotCom will post additional information and analysis regarding the May 2016 Visa Bulletin in the near future.


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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.