Availability of Immigrant Visa Numbers for June, 2012
By: Allen E. Kaye
|All chargeability areas except the countries separately listed||China (Mainland Born)||India||Mexico||Philippines|
|F1||Unmarried Sons & Daughters of U.S. citizens||22 JUN 05||22 JUN 05||22 JUN 05||15 MAY 93||01 JUL 97|
|F2A||Spouses & Unmarried Children of Permanent Residents – Subject to Per Country Limit||01 JAN 10||01 JAN 10||01 JAN 10||08 DEC 09||01 JAN 10|
|F2B||Unmarried Sons & Daughters (21 years of age or older) of Permanent Residents||15 APR 04||15 APR 04||15 APR 04||01 JAN 02||08 DEC 01|
|3rd||Married Sons & Daughters of U.S. Citizens||01 APR 02||01 APR 02||01 APR 02||15 JAN 93||22 JUL 92|
|4th||Brothers & Sisters of Adult U.S. Citizens||08 JAN01||15 DEC 00||08 JAN 01||01 JAN96||22 JAN89|
|All chargeability areas
except the countries
|China (mainland born)||India||Mexico||Philippines|
|E2||Professionals Holding Advanced Degree or Persons of Exceptional Ability||C||U||U||C||C|
|E3||Skilled Workers & Professionals||08 JUN 06||08 AUG 05||15 SEP 02||08 JUN 06||22 MAY 06|
|EW||Other Workers (Unskilled Workers)||08 JUN 06||22 APR 03||15 SEP 02||08 JUN 06||22 MAY 06|
|E4||Certain Special Immigrants||C||C||C||C||C|
|E4||Certain Religious Workers (SR)||C||C||C||C||C|
|E5||Employment Creation (Investors)||C||C||C||C||C|
|E5||Employment Creation (Investors in Targeted Employment Areas)||C||C||C||C||C|
C = Current
U = Unavailable
Cut-off date = The cut-off date is the priority date of the first applicant who could not be reached within the statutory limit for the month.
Only applicants who have priority dates earlier than the cut-off date may be allocated a number
The first preference (unmarried sons and daughters of U.S. citizens) category moved to June 22, 2005 for all chargeability areas, China (mainland born), and India. Mexico remained at May 15, 1993. The Philippines remained at July 1, 1997.
The 2A second preference (spouses and unmarried children of permanent residents—subject to per country limit) category moved forward to January 1, 2010 for all chargeability areas, China (mainland born), India, and the Philippines. Mexico moved to December 8, 2009.
The 2B second preference (unmarried sons and daughters, 21 years of age or older, of permanent residents) category moved to April 15, 2004 for all chargeability areas, including China (mainland born) and India. Mexico moved to January 1, 1992. The Philippines remained at December 8, 2001.
The F3 third preference (married sons and daughters of U.S. citizens) category moved forward to April 1, 2002 for all chargeability areas, China (mainland born), and India. Mexico remained at January 15, 1993. The Philippines remained at July 22, 1992.
The F4 fourth preference (brothers and sisters of adult U.S. citizens) category moved to January 8, 2001 for all chargeability areas, India. China (mainland born) moved to December 15, 2000. Mexico remained at June 1, 1996. The Philippines moved to January 22, 1989.
NOTE: “immediate relatives” (husbands and wives, under 21-years-old unmarried children and parents of U.S. citizens over 21 years of age) are not included in this listing of family-sponsored preferences as they do not need a visa number.
The E1 first preference (Priority Workers) category remained current for all chargeability areas including China (mainland born), India, Mexico, Philippines.
The E2 second preference (professionals holding advanced degrees or persons of exceptional ability) category remained current for all chargeability areas including Mexico, and the Philippines. China (mainland born) and India are unavailable.
The E3 third preference (skilled workers and professionals) category moved forward to June 8, 2006 for all chargeability areas, and Mexico. China (mainland born) moved to August 8, 2005. India moved one week to September 15, 2002. The Philippines moved to May 22, 2006.
The EW third preference other workers (unskilled workers) category moved to June 8, 2006 for all chargeability area and Mexico. India moved to September 15, 2002. China remained at April 22, 2003. The Philippines moved to May 22, 2006.
The E4 fourth preference (certain special immigrants) category remains current for all chargeability areas, China (mainland born), India, Mexico and the Philippines
The E4 fourth preference (certain religious workers,) category remains current for all chargeability areas and China (mainland born), India, Mexico, and Philippines.
The E5 fifth preference – employment creation (investors) category remains current for all chargeability areas, China (mainland born), India, Mexico, and the Philippines. Employment Creation (Investors in Targeted Employment Areas) category remained current for all chargeability areas, China (mainland born), India, Mexico, and the Philippines. Pilot programs remained current for all chargeability areas, China (mainland born), India, Mexico, and the Philippines.
DETERMINATION OF THE NUMERICAL LIMITS ON IMMIGRANTS REQUIRED UNDER THE TERMS OF THE IMMIGRATION AND NATIONALITY ACT (INA)
1. Section 201 of the Immigration and Nationality Act (INA) sets an annual minimum family-sponsored preference limit of 226,000. The worldwide level for annual employment-based preference immigrants is at least 140,000. Section 202 prescribes that the per-country limit for preference immigrants is set at 7% of the total annual family-sponsored and employment-based preference limits, i.e., 25,620. The dependent area limit is set at 2%, or 7,320.
2. Section 203 of the INA prescribes preference classes for allotment of immigrant visas as follows:
First: Unmarried Sons and Daughters of Citizens: 23,400 plus any numbers not required for fourth preference.
Second: Spouses and Children, and Unmarried Sons and Daughters of Permanent Residents: 114,200, plus the number (if any) by which the worldwide family preference level exceeds 226,000, and any unused first preference numbers:
A. Spouses and Children: 77% of the overall second preference limitation, of which 75% are exempt from the per-country limit;
B. Unmarried Sons and Daughters (21 years of age or older): 23% of the overall second preference limitation.
Third: Married Sons and Daughters of Citizens: 23,400, plus any numbers not required by first and second preferences.
Fourth: Brothers and Sisters of Adult Citizens: 65,000, plus any numbers not required by first three preferences.
First: Priority Workers: 28.6% of the worldwide employment-based preference level, plus any numbers not required for fourth and fifth preferences.
Second: Members of the Professions Holding Advanced Degrees or Persons of Exceptional Ability: 28.6% of the worldwide employment-based preference level, plus any numbers not required by first preference.
Third: Skilled Workers, Professionals, and Other Workers: 28.6% of the worldwide level, plus any numbers not required by first and second preferences, not more than 10,000 of which to “Other Workers.”
Fourth: Certain Special Immigrants: 7.1% of the worldwide level.
Fifth: Employment Creation: 7.1% of the worldwide level, not less than 3,000 of which reserved for investors in a targeted rural or high-unemployment area, and 3,000 set aside for investors in regional centers by Sec. 610 of P.L. 102-395.
INA Section 203(e) provides that family-sponsored and employment-based preference visas be issued to eligible immigrants in the order in which a petition in behalf of each has been filed. Section 203(d) provided that spouses and children of preference immigrants are entitled to the same status, and the same order of consideration, if accompanying or following to join the principal. The visa prorating provisions of Section 202(e) apply to allocations for a foreign state or dependent area when visa demand exceeds the per-country limit. These provisions apply at present to the following chargeability areas: INDIA, MEXICO, PHILIPPINES and CHINA (mainland born). This limits the number of visas available to immigrants chargeable to these countries in the various preference categories.
EMPLOYMENT PREFERENCE VISA AVAILABILITY
Employment Third Preference Other Workers Category: Section 203(e) of the NACARA, as amended by Section 1(e) of Pub. L. 105-139, provides that once the Employment Third Preference Other Worker (EW) cut-off date has reached the priority date of the latest EW petition approved prior to November 19, 1997, the 10,000 EW numbers available for a fiscal year are to be reduced by up to 5,000 annually beginning in the following fiscal year. This reduction is to be made for as long as necessary to offset adjustments under the NACARA program. Since the EW cut-off date reached November 19, 1997 during Fiscal Year 2001, the reduction in the EW annual limit to 5,000 began in Fiscal Year 2002.
DIVERSITY IMMIGRANT (DV) CATEGORY
Section 203(c) of the Immigration and Nationality Act provides a maximum of up to 55,000 immigrant visas each fiscal year to permit immigration opportunities for persons from countries other than the principal sources of current immigration to the United States. The Nicaraguan and Central American Relief Act (NACARA) passed by Congress in November 1997 stipulates that beginning with DV-99, and for as long as necessary, up to 5,000 of the 55,000 annually-allocated diversity visas will be made available for use under the NACARA program. This reduction has resulted in the DV-2012 annual limit being reduced to 50,000. DV visas are divided among six geographic regions. No one country can receive more than seven percent of the available diversity visas in any one year.
For June, immigrant numbers in the DV category are available to qualified DV-2012 applicants chargeable to all regions/eligible countries as follows. When an allocation cut-off number is shown, visas are available only for applicants with DV regional lottery rank numbers BELOW the specified allocation cut-off number:
All DV Chargeability Areas Except Those Listed Separately
Except: UZBEKISTAN: 17,050
NORTH AMERICA (BAHAMAS): CURRENT;
SOUTH AMERICA and the CARIBBEAN: CURRENT
Entitlement to immigrant status in the DV category lasts only through the end of the fiscal (visa) year for which the applicant is selected in the lottery. The year of entitlement for all applicants registered for the DV-2012 program ends as of September 30, 2012. DV visas may not be issued to DV-2012 applicants after that date. Similarly, spouses and children accompanying or following to join DV-2012 principals are only entitled to derivative DV status until September 30, 2012. DV visa availability through the very end of FY-2012 cannot be taken for granted. Numbers could be exhausted prior to September 30.
CHINA-MAINLAND AND INDIA EMPLOYMENT SECOND PREFERENCE CATEGORY IS UNAVAILABLE
Despite the retrogression of the China and India Employment Second preference cut-off date to August 15, 2007, demand for numbers by applicants with priority dates earlier than that date remained excessive. Such demand is primarily based on cases which had originally been filed with the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) for adjustment of status in the Employment Third preference category, and are now eligible to be upgraded to Employment Second preference status. The potential amount of such “upgrade” demand is not currently being reported, but it was evident that the continued availability of Employment Second preference numbers for countries other than China and India was being jeopardized. Therefore, it was necessary to make the China and India Employment Second preference category “Unavailable” in early April, and it will remain so for the remainder of FY-2012.
Numbers will once again be available for China and India Employment Second preference cases beginning October 1, 2012 under the FY-2013 annual numerical limitations. Every effort will be made to return the China and India Employment Second preference cut-off date to the May 1, 2010 date which had been reached in April 2012. Readers should be advised that it is impossible to accurately estimate how long that may take, but current indications are that it would definitely not occur before spring 2013.
USCIS has indicated that it will continue accepting China and India Employment Second preference I-485 filings during May, based on the originally announced May cut-off date.
EMPLOYMENT FIRST AND SECOND PREFERENCE VISA AVAILABILITY
Item F of the May Visa Bulletin (number 44) provided projections regarding visa availability in the coming months. Information received from the USCIS after the publication of that item requires an update in the projections for the Employment First and Second preference categories.
Employment First: Based on the current rate of demand, it may be necessary to establish a cut-off date at the end of the fiscal year in an effort to limit number use within the annual numerical limit.
Employment Second: Based on the current rate of demand, it may be necessary to establish a cut-off date for this category for all countries other than China and India. Such action may be required at any time during the next few months.
Please be advised that the above are only estimates for what could happen during the next few months based on applicant demand patterns experienced in recent months.
DIVERSITY VISA LOTTERY 2013 (DV-2013) RESULTS
The Kentucky Consular Center in Williamsburg, Kentucky has registered and notified the winners of the DV-2013 diversity lottery. The diversity lottery was conducted under the terms of section 203(c) of the Immigration and Nationality Act and makes available *50,000 permanent resident visas annually to persons from countries with low rates of immigration to the United States. Approximately 105,628 applicants have been registered. Applicants may check the status of their entry using the confirmation number through Entrant Status Check on the website www.dvlottery.state.gov. Entrants selected may make an application for an immigrant visa. Since it is likely that some of the first *50,000 persons registered will not pursue their cases to visa issuance, this larger figure should insure that all DV-2013 numbers will be used during fiscal year 2013 (October 1, 2012 until September 30, 2013).
Applicants registered for the DV-2013 program were selected at random from 7,941,400 qualified entries (12,577,463 with derivatives) received during the 30-day application period that ran from noon, Eastern Daylight Time on Tuesday, October 4, 2011, until noon, Eastern Daylight Time on Saturday, November 5, 2011. The visas have been apportioned among six geographic regions with a maximum of seven percent available to persons born in any single country. During the visa interview, principal applicants must provide proof of a high school education or its equivalent, or show two years of work experience in an occupation that requires at least two years of training or experience within the past five years. Those selected will need to act on their immigrant visa applications quickly. Applicants should follow the instructions provided on the website www.dvlottery.state.gov.
Registrants living legally in the United States who wish to apply for adjustment of their status must contact USCIS for information on the requirements and procedures. Once the total *50,000 visa numbers have been used, the program for fiscal year 2013 will end. Selected applicants who do not receive visas by September 30, 2013 will derive no further benefit from their DV-2013 registration. Similarly, spouses and children accompanying or following to join DV-2013 principal applicants are only entitled to derivative diversity visa status until September 30, 2013.
Dates for the DV-2014 program registration period will be widely publicized in the coming months. Those interested in entering the DV-2014 program should check the Department of State’s Visa web page for more details in September.
* The Nicaraguan and Central American Relief Act (NACARA) passed by Congress
in November 1997 stipulated that up to 5,000 of the 55,000 annually-allocated diversity visas be made available for use under the NACARA program. The reduction of the limit of available visas to 50,000 began with DV-2000.
The following is the statistical breakdown by foreign-state chargeability of those registered for the DV-2013 program:
SAO TOME AND PRINCIPE 0
GAMBIA, THE 85
SIERRA LEONE 2,516
BURKINA FASO 296
SOUTH AFRICA 956
SOUTH SUDAN 5
CAPE VERDE 25
CENTRAL AFRICAN REP. 18
CONGO, DEMOCRATIC MAURITANIA 31
REPUBLIC OF THE 3,924
COTE D’IVOIRE 805
EQUATORIAL GUINEA 19
SAUDI ARABIA 287
BRUNEI 8 NORTH KOREA 0
SRI LANKA 802
LAOS 1 SYRIA 170
HONG KONG SPECIAL LEBANON 269
ADMIN. REGION 92
UNITED ARAB EMIRATES 98
Sint Maarten 2
NORTHERN IRELAND 45
BOSNIA & HERZEGOVINA 54
SAN MARINO 0
CZECH REPUBLIC 73
Faroe Islands 9
French Polynesia 11
New Caledonia 0
Saint Barthelemy 4
VATICAN CITY 0
BAHAMAS, THE 16
Christmas Islands 0
NEW ZEALAND 373
Cocos Islands 2
Cook Islands 0
Norfolk Island 4
WESTERN SAMOA 30
MARSHALL ISLANDS 0
PAPUA NEW GUINEA 18
MICRONESIA, FEDERATED SAMOA 0
STATES OF 1 SOLOMON ISLANDS 0
SOUTH AMERICA, CENTRAL AMERICA, AND THE CARIBBEAN
ANTIGUA AND BARBUDA 3
SAINT LUCIA 19
SAINT VINCENT AND BARBADOS 5
THE GRENADINES 14
TRINIDAD AND TOBAGO 137
COSTA RICA 63
SAINT KITTS AND NEVIS 5
Natives of the following countries were not eligible to participate in DV-2013: Bangladesh, Brazil, Canada, China (mainland-born, excluding Hong Kong S.A.R., Macau S.A.R., and Taiwan), Colombia, Dominican Republic, Ecuador, El Salvador, Guatemala, Haiti, India, Jamaica, Mexico, Pakistan, Peru, the Philippines, South Korea, United Kingdom (except Northern Ireland) and its dependent territories, and Vietnam.