Most employment-based Final Action dates show modest or no movement in April. The EB-2 India Final Action date will advance by over two months, to July 8, 2013. EB-2 China will remain at March 1, 2019. EB-3 India and EB-3 China Professional/Skilled Worker Final Action dates will remain unchanged from the previous month, at January 15, 2012 and March 22, 2018, respectively. Worldwide EB-1/EB-2/EB-3, and EB-1 China and India will remain current next month. EB-5 China (Non-Regional Center program) remains current next month, while EB-5 (Regional Center) remains Unavailable, pending the effective date of certain provisions in recent legislation reauthorizing the program. The Date for Filing for EB-2 India will advance a full year, to September 1, 2014. All other Dates for Filing for EB-1, EB-2, and EB-3 Professional/Skilled Workers will remain unchanged in April.
A closer look
According to the State Department’s April Visa Bulletin, Final Action cutoff dates for issuance of an immigrant visa will be as follows:
- EB-1: All countries, including India and China, will remain current.
- EB-2: India will advance by over two months, to July 8, 2013, and China will remain at March 1, 2019. All other countries will remain current.
- EB-3 Professionals and Skilled Workers: EB-3 India and EB-3 China will remain unchanged from the previous month, at January 15, 2012 and March 22, 2018, respectively. All other countries will remain current.
- EB-5: The Non-Regional Center program will be current for all countries, including China. The Regional Center program has been reauthorized by recent legislation but is still listed as Unavailable in the April Visa Bulletin Final Action Date chart, as certain provisions of the reauthorizing legislation have not yet taken effect.
In the coming days, USCIS is expected to announce on its own Visa Bulletin web page the cutoff dates for acceptance of adjustment of status applications next month. That announcement will clarify whether USCIS will accept adjustment of status applications based on the Final Action dates chart, or on the Dates for Filing chart. The Dates for Filing chart in the April Visa Bulletin remains the same as last month, with the notable exception of the EB-2 India Date for Filing, which advances a full year, to September 1, 2014, and the Date for Filing for EB-3 China Other Workers, which advances one month, to August 1, 2015.
Visa application backlogs coupled with reduced consular operations due to COVID-19 public health measures continue to limit the issuance of immigrant visas by U.S. consulates abroad. Immigrant visa (IV) applicants who are no longer subject to the Trump-era immigrant ban may see their cases move forward, but should continue to expect delays as most consulates are still at reduced capacity as they try to work through backlogs. Those previously refused under the IV ban should await further instruction from the U.S. consulate that handled their application.