The State Department has released the December 2017 Visa Bulletin listing the priority dates eligible for “Application Final Action,” i.e. when an I-485 adjustment of status (AOS) application may be approved or an immigrant visa (IV) issued, and the priority dates eligible for “Filing Applications,” i.e. when an AOS or IV application may be filed.
There again will be small but consistent advances in the “Application Final Action Dates” in most of the family-based categories, but there are two major retrogressions. Each of the family-based categories will advance between one week and two months except for the first-preference (F1), third-preference (F3), and fourth preference (F4) for nationals of Mexico, which will not advance. The retrogressions will hit the first-preference (F1) and third-preference (F3) for nationals of the Philippines: The F-1 category will retrogress two full years to January 1, 2005, while the F3 category will retrogress six months to July 1, 2006.
In the “Application Final Action Dates” for the employment-based categories, the EB-1 category remains current for all countries after becoming current across the board in October. There will be minor advancement in the other categories, although EB-3 India and Philippines will remain stagnant.
There will be no movement in the “Dates for Filing” in the either the family-based or employment-based categories.
Finally, the December Visa Bulletin also reminds that the non-minister special immigrant program and the Employment Fifth Preference Categories (I5 and R5) are set to expire on December 8, 2017, at which time visas in those categories will become unavailable unless Congress acts to extend them further.
As a reminder, the “Dates for Filing Applications” are valid only for consular processing immigrant visa applications. USCIS will make a separate determination whether to allow the filing of AOS applications under the “Dates for Filing” chart or the “Application Final Action Dates” chart in the visa bulletin. USCIS has not yet determined which chart may be used for adjustment of status filings in December 2017. The agency will post that information on its website.
You can view the visa bulletin in its entirety below. Please contact us with any questions.
News and Updates
Immigration law news and updates from the attorneys at Steel, Doebley & Glassman