The United States Citizenship and Immigration Services released the January 2016 Visa Bulletin for adjustment of status applicants.1
The Visa Bulletin shows when a person who is the beneficiary of an approved immigrant visa petition may file for an immigrant visa. It includes filing dates for family-sponsored and employment-based immigrant visa preference categories.
An alien may file for an immigrant visa once his or her priority date is before the filing date listed on the appropriate chart. The priority date is generally the date on which the alien's sponsor (either a family member or an employer, except in self-petitioning cases) filed the immigrant visa petition on his or her behalf. If labor certification required for an alien who was the beneficiary of an employment-based immigrant visa petition, the date that the labor certification was accepted for processing serves as the priority date.
Please note that “C” stands for “current,” and means that an alien in the given category with an approved immigrant visa petition is eligible to file for an immigrant visa in January of 2016 regardless of his or her priority date.
Dates for Filing Family-Sponsored Adjustment of Status Applications (January 2016)
Application Final Action Dates For Employment-Based Preference Cases (January 2016)
|Employment- Based||All Chargeability Areas Except Those Listed||CHINA — mainland born||INDIA||MEXICO||PHILIPPINES|
|Certain Religious Workers||C||C||C||C||C|
(C5 and T5)
(I5 and R5)
We have included the final action dates for “Certain Religions Workers” and “5th Regional Center (I5 and R5)” that will be effective once the congressional omnibus bill is signed into law. These two programs had been slated to expire before Congress agreed to fund them until September 30, 2016.
The USCIS news release contains a chart that provides a simple overview of the adjustment of status process. I have reproduced the chart below for your convenience:
- USCIS, “When to File Your Adjustment of Status Application for Family-Sponsored or Employment-Based Preference Visas: January 2016, USCIS, (Dec. 11, 2015), available at http://www.uscis.gov/visabulletin-jan-16 [link]