Reuben S. Seguritan

Philippine EB-3 Visa Preference Rolls Back Another Two Years

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The June 2015 Visa Bulletin shows that the cut-off date of the Philippine employment-based third preference (EB-3) for skilled workers, professionals and other workers will roll back another two years and six months from July 1, 2007 to January 1, 2005. The retrogression started this month of May when the Philippine EB-3 cut-off date rolled back seven years and three months to July 1, 2007.

 

The EB-3 cut-off date for all other countries except China and India will move forward by one month and fourteen days, to February 15, 2015.

The cut-off date for China’s employment-based third preference for skilled workers and professionals will move by four months to September 1, 2011 and other workers by one month and seventeen days to January 1, 2006. Meanwhile, EB-3 cut-off date for India will move by seven days to January 22, 2004.

The employment-based second preference (EB-2) will remain current for all countries except China and India. China’s second preference cut-off date will move by one year to June 1, 2013 while India’s cut-off date will advance by more than six months, to October 1, 2008.

Also, the employment-based fifth preference (EB-5) will remain current for all countries except China. The EB-5 cut-off date for China will remain at May 1, 2013. All the other employment preferences will remain current for all countries.

The family-based preferences (F-1 to F-4) will move slowly. The worldwide preference cut-off dates are as follows: F-1 (unmarried sons and daughters of U.S. citizens) September 1, 2007; F-2A(spouses and children of permanent residents) October 1, 2013; F-2B (adult unmarried sons and daughters of permanent residents) September 15, 2008; F-3 (married son and daughters of U.S citizens) February 22, 2004 and F-4 (brothers and sisters of U.S. citizens) September 8, 2002.

The cut-off date for the first preference (F-1) category for the Philippines will retrogress four years and 11 months. The Philippine cut-off dates are: F-1 March 1, 2000; F-2A October 1, 2013; F-2B May 1, 2004; F-3 August 15, 1993 and F-4 November 8, 1991.

Beneficiaries of employment-based and family-based preferences who have priority dates earlier than the aforementioned cut-off dates and are currently in the U.S., must file their adjustment application in order to get certain interim immigration benefits such as employment authorization and travel permit. Those with pending adjustment applications will be allowed to remain in the U.S. and work here until the adjudication of their adjustment applications.

 

Eligible to file for adjustment of status are those lawfully present in the United States or those who are beneficiaries under Section 245(i) of the Immigration and Nationality Act. To be covered under Section 245(i), an alien must be the beneficiary of an immigrant visa petition or labor certification filed on or before April 30, 2001. If the visa petition or labor certification was filed between January 14, 1998 and April 30, 2001, the alien must prove that he/she was in the U.S. on December 21, 2000.

Among the documents required to file for adjustment of status, in addition to Form I-485 and related forms, are the applicant’s photographs, medical examination report, affidavit of support, copy of passport and I-94, copy of birth certificate, and if applicable, copy of the applicant’s marriage certificate and official proof of termination of any prior marriage.

 

 

(Editor’s Note: REUBEN S. SEGURITAN has been practicing law for over 30 years. For more information, you may log on to his website at www.seguritan.com or call (212) 695-5281.)

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