On September 25, 2015, the U.S. Department of State (DOS) issued a revised Visa Bulletin for October 2015 that supersedes the original Bulletin dated September 9, 2015. In the current Bulletin, the dates for certain categories on the “Dates for Filing of Employment-Based Visa Applications” chart retrogressed from the dates on the original Bulletin. Specifically, dates for the Employment-Based Second Preference category for China retrogressed by one year and five months from May 1, 2014 to January 1, 2013, and India retrogressed by two full years from July 1, 2011 to July 1, 2009. The Philippines moved for both Employment-Based Third and Other Workers Preference categories from January 1, 2015 to January 1, 2010, a retrogression of five years. There were no revisions to the actual priority dates for October.
This latest shift in dates takes place against the backdrop of other recent changes. On September 9, 2015, the DOS and United States Citizenship and Immigration Services announced new procedures for determining visa availability for applicants waiting to file for Employment-Based or Family-Sponsored Preference adjustment of status. Under these new changes, separate cut-off dates will permit the filing of permanent residence petitions even though final adjudication of the applications may be years away.
Impact on Applicants
Now, those applicants under the affected categories will need to wait until their application processing dates become current. Ogletree Deakins will provide further updates as information becomes available.
Jake Campbell is a law student, currently working as a Law Clerk in the Atlanta office of Ogletree Deakins.