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. No one country in the category is allowed to exceed more than 7% of the visas allowed.  For applicants from countries that have exceeded the 7% allowance, a “visa retrogression” (or wait-list) is applied to the country.

Due to increased demand in visa categories, the State Department has retrogressed EB-1 visa for Mainland China born applications and EB-3 visa for Mainland China and India born applicants. EB-1 China has retrogressed to January 1, 2014, while EB-1 for all countries other than China and India in retrogressed to October 1, 2017. EB-1 India is unavailable.

EB-3 for Mainland China born applicants has retrogressed for 2 and a half years to January 1, 2014 while EB-3 for Indian born applicants has retrogressed by 6 months to July 2005. The visa for all other countries has remained at July 1, 2016.

Another big movement on this month’s visa bulletin is EB-5 visa for India born applicants. The visa has advanced almost three years to September 1, 2017. China and Vietnam have advanced 1 week to October 22, 2014. The visa remains current for all other countries.

It should be noted that right now this visa retrogression will be applied to applicants who were born in India, Vietnam, and Mainland China. Applicants who hold dual nationality or are naturalized citizens of another country but were born in these countries will still be affected.

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