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May 2014 Processing Times and Predictions for Family-sponsored Immigrant Visas

The Visa Bulletin for May 2014 is out. Here, you will find our firm’s analysis of the current visa bulletin as compared to the visa bulletins from last month and last year, giving you a glance at the monthly and annual trends in the movement of the priority date cut-offs for each category. Based on these trends and statements released by the U.S. Department of State, we offer predictions for what to expect for the upcoming months.

The Law Firm of Shihab & Associates has decades of combined experience in immigration law. Contact us if you would like to consult with one of our skillful attorneys about the Visa Bulletin or the green card application process.

To learn more about how the Visa Bulletin works, check-out our article: Understanding Immigrant Visa Allocation and Processing Times: A Story of Supply and Demand

F-1: Unmarried Sons and Daughters of U.S. Citizens
NationPriority Date Cut-Off
China – mainland bornMarch 8, 2007
IndiaMarch 8, 2007
MexicoNovember 15, 1993
PhilippinesFebruary 1, 2002
All Chargeability Areas Except Those ListedMarch 8, 2007

Global Glimpse: The Philippines saw the greatest movement in the F-1 category, jumping ahead three months. The priority date cut-off for F-1 applicants from China, India, Mexico and all other chargeability areas advanced by two weeks.

China, India, and All Other Chargeability Areas: Moving a little more slowly than we anticipated, the priority date cut-off for F-1 applicants from China, India and the rest of the world progressed from February 22, 2007 to March 8, 2007 since the April 2014 Visa Bulletin was released. This means that, if your priority date is before March 8, 2007, a green card is available to you beginning in May 2014.

One year ago, the priority date cut-off for these areas was April 1, 2006. Based on the annual trend, we predict that the priority date cut-off will be no later than March 22, 2007. If your priority date is before March 22, 2007, you should begin preparing to file for your green card in June 2014. Contact the Law Firm of Shihab & Associates to speak with an knowledgeable attorney about the green card application process.

Mexico: The priority date cut-off for Mexican sons and daughters of U.S. Citizens has advanced by two weeks since the April 2014 Visa Bulletin, from November 1, 1993to November 15, 1993. Applicants with a priority date that falls before November 15, 1993 are finally eligible to receive a green card. Contact us today to learn more about the process. Last year, the priority date cut-off was August 8, 1993, making the annual movement a little over one year at a time. Based on recent trends, we expect the cut-off date to move another two weeks in June 2014. Thus, if your priority date is before October 1, 1993, you may want to consider preparing to file for your green card this coming June.

While waiting in the visa queue, you must be sure to maintain a valid status. Contact us to ensure that you do not violate the terms of your status.

Philippines: Making a second significant stride in May 2014, the F-1 visa category for the Philippines advanced by another three months, jumping from November 1, 2001 to February 1, 2002. If your priority date falls before February 1, 2002, contact us to continue on your path to permanent residence.

Last May, the priority date cut-off was June 1, 1999. Thus, the priority date cut-off has advanced by almost three years. With such significant progress in the past year, F-1 applicants from the Philippines should keep a close watch on the visa bulletin in the upcoming months as the priority date cut-off is likely to continue to progress at this rapid rate.

F-2A: Spouses and Children of Permanent Residents
NationPriority Date Cut-Off
China – mainland bornSeptember 8, 2013
IndiaSeptember 8, 2013
MexicoApril 15, 2012
PhilippinesSeptember 8, 2013
All Chargeability Areas Except Those ListedSeptember 8, 2013

Global Glimpse: There has been no movement reported for the F-2A visa category worldwide since the priority date cut-off significantly jumped last September. The Department of State released a statement at the end of the May 2014 Visa Bulletin explaining that the rapid advancement in September 2013 was meant to generate demand for the category, as it has been very low in the first three quarters of 2013.

As anticipated, demand increased for this category since the priority date cut-off dramatically progressed worldwide. Thus, the entire F-2A category has been at a standstill since October 2013. The Department of State has indicated that, at the current rate of demand, it is likely that the F-2A category will retrogress sometime in the next several months.

China, India, the Philippines, and All Other Chargeability Areas: If your priority date is before September 8, 2013 and you still haven’t filed your green card application, contact the Law Firm of Shihab & Associates to check it off your to-do list.

Mexico: The priority date cut-off for F-2A applicants from Mexico retrogressed in March 2014. The Department of State has indicated that, given the heavy demand in this category, a second retrogression will likely be required to maintain adequate supply of visa numbers. Contact us to learn more about how retrogression can affect your case.

F-2B: Unmarried Sons and Daughters (21 years of age or older) of Permanent Residents
NationPriority Date Cut-Off
China – mainland bornFebruary 1, 2007
IndiaFebruary 1, 2007
MexicoMay 15, 1993
PhilippinesJune 22, 2003
All Chargeability Areas Except Those ListedFebruary 1, 2007

Global Glimpse: The priority date cut-off for the F-2B visa category for China, India and all other chargeability areas continues to progress at a rapid rate, jumping ahead over three months since the April 2014 Visa Bulletin. After remaining static last month, the priority date cut-offs inched forward by two weeks for both Mexico and the Philippines

China, India, and All Other Chargeability Areas: After the seven week jump reported from March to April 2014, the priority date cut-off for F-2B visas from China, India and all other chargeability made another leap, this time progressing over three months from October 22, 2006 to February 7, 2007. If you have a priority date that is before February 1, 2007, you’re at the front of the visa queue! Contact the Law Firm of Shihab & Associates today to get the ball rolling on your green card application.

Mexico: The F-2B visa category for Mexico has finally progressed by two weeks, from May 1, 1993 to May 15, 1993, after remaining stagnant since it retrogressed in the February 2014 Visa Bulletin. If your priority date is before May 15, 1993, contact us to learn what to do next.

Philippines: The priority date cut-off for the F-2B visa category for the Philippines also finally advanced by two weeks, from June 8, 2003 to June 22, 2003, after remaining stagnant since the March 2014 Visa Bulletin was released. If your priority date is before June 22, 2003, you’re next in line to receive a green card! Contact us today to get started on the application process.

F-3: Married Sons and Daughters of U.S. Citizens
NationPriority Date Cut-Off
China – mainland bornSeptember 1, 2003
IndiaSeptember 1, 2003
MexicoJuly 1, 1993
PhilippinesMarch 1, 1993
All Chargeability Areas Except Those ListedSeptember 1, 2003

Global Glimpse: The priority date cut-off for F-3 visas for China, India and the rest of the world progressed by over seven weeks. The priority dates for F-3 visas for the Philippines and Mexico moved forward by one week.

China, India, and All Other Chargeability Areas: The priority date cut-off for F-3 visas from China, India and all other chargeability areas progressed more rapidly than expected, moving ahead seven weeks, from July 15, 2003 in April 2014 to September 1, 2003 in May 2014. Based on these trends, it is likely that the priority date cut-off will be somewhere around October 1, 2003. If your priority date is before September 1, 2003, contact the Law Firm of Shihab & Associates start the process of obtaining your green card. If your priority date is sometime before October 1, 2003, be ready to file your green card application in June 2014.

Mexico: The priority date cut-off for F-3 applicants from Mexico progressed by one week, from June 22, 2003 to July 1, 1993. If your priority date falls before July 1, 1993, dust off your approval notice and contact us today to move forward in obtaining your green card. Based on these trends, if your priority date is before July 8, 1993, be prepared to file in June 2014.

Philippines: As we predicted last month, the May 2014 Visa Bulletin reports a one week progression since April 2014. The F-3 visa category for the Philippines advanced from February 22,, 1993 to March 1, 1993. You may expect the priority date to advance to March 15, 1993 in the June 2014 visa bulletin. If your priority date is before March 1, 1993, contact us to apply for your green card today.

F-4: Brothers and Sisters of Adult U.S. Citizens
NationPriority Date Cut-Off
China – mainland bornDecember 8, 2001
IndiaDecember 8, 2001
MexicoDecember 1, 1996
PhilippinesNovember 1, 1990
All Chargeability Areas Except Those ListedDecember 8, 2001

Global Glimpse: In the May 2014 Visa Bulletin, the priority date cut-off for F-4 visas for China, India and the rest of the world progressed by another two weeks. The priority date cut-off for F-4 visas for Mexican nationals advanced by one week and the F-4 visa category for Filipino’s advanced forward by one month.

China, India, and All Other Chargeability Areas: As we predicted last month, the processing time for F-4 visas for nationals from China, India and all other chargeability areas moved forward two weeks, from November 22, 2001 to December 8, 2001. Using this trajectory, we expect that the priority date cut-off for these areas will continue to move forward two weeks at a time, placing the priority date for June 2014 around December 22, 2001. If your priority date is before December 8, 2001, it’s your turn to receive a green card. Contact the Law Firm of Shihab & Associates to apply today.

Mexico: As anticipated, the priority date cut-off for F-4 visas for Mexican nationals continues to progress at a weekly rate, and has advanced from November 22, 1996 to December 1, 1996. Given this trend, we are again predicting that the June 2014 Visa Bulletin will report a priority date cut-off on or around December 8, 1996. If your priority date falls before December 1, 1996, a green card is finally available to you. Contact us to file your application today.

Philippines: The priority date cut-off for the F-4 visa category for Filipino nationals continues to advance at a monthly rate, from October 1, 1990 to November 1, 1990. If your priority date is before November 1, 1990, dust off your approval notice and contact us today to apply for your green card! It is likely that the June 2014 Visa Bulletin will report the priority date cut-off to be December 1, 1990; so, be prepared to file for your green card this June.

Contact Us

If you eligible to receive your green card and would like to learn more about the process, or if you have any questions about the Visa Bulletin and how it applies to you, contact us today to consult with one of our experienced attorneys.

For a chart showing the processing times described above, click here.

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