Announced in the State Department’s August Visa Bulletin, Employment-Based Immigration: First Preference (EB-1) visa have retrogressed for all countries worldwide, except for Mainland China and India, to May 1, 2016. Mainland China and India’s cutoff dates have remained at January 1, 2012. Before this update, all EB-1 countries except for Mainland China and India were current.
Every year, Congress sets limits on the number of immigrant visas that can be issued each year. In order to adjust status to that of a legal permanent resident, also known as a Green Card holder, an immigrant visa must be available to the applicant both at the time of filing and at the time of adjudication. Visa retrogression happens when a country’s visa allowance is not “current”, but rather a cutoff date is imposed on its applicants. The Department of State publishes a monthly Visa Bulletin which lists the cutoff dates that govern visa availability. It determines which applicants are eligible to file for adjustment of status, as well as which applicants are eligible for permanent resident status. Applicants who have a priority date earlier than the cutoff date published in the most current Visa Bulletin are eligible to apply for permanent residence.
EB-1 visas are employment-based immigration visas that are eligible for individuals with an extraordinary ability, are an outstanding professor or researcher, or are a multinational executive or manager:
- To meet the extraordinary ability category, you have to able to demonstrate extraordinary ability in the sciences, arts, education, business, or athletics through sustained national or international acclaim. To learn more about extraordinary ability and whether or not you qualify, please click here.
- For Outstanding professors and researchers, you must demonstrate international recognition for your outstanding achievements in a particular academic field, have worked in the field for more than 3 years, and are entering the U.S. to purse tenure or comparable research positions at a university or other higher education institution.
- For multinational manager or executives, you must have been employed outside the United States in the 3 years preceding the petition for at least 1 year by a firm or corporation and you must be seeking to enter the United States to continue service to that firm or organization.
To learn more about EB-1 visas, please click here.
This mid-month imposition of an EB-1 cutoff date is unexpected, especially a 2-year delay on a visa that had no indication of becoming retrogressed before this newest update. An announcement from USCIS about this issue is anticipated, and the EB-1worldwide category is expected to become current in October 2018. To view the latest visa bulletin for August 2018, please click here.
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