The Department of State (DOS) has released its Visa Bulletin outlining the availability of immigrant visa numbers for January 2010. For employment-based immigrant visa petitions, visa numbers remain available for all nationalities in the first-preference category. The current priority dates for Indian nationals and Chinese nationals in the second-preference category are January 22, 2005 and May 1, 2005, respectively. Visa numbers remain current and available for all other nationalities in the second-preference category.

Visa numbers are available in the third-preference category. Click here to view.

Numbers are available for all nationalities in the fourth-preference, Certain Religious Workers, fifth-preference, Targeted Employment Areas/Regional Centers, and 5th Pilot Programs categories.

The January 2010 bulletin also provides detailed explanation of the numerical control system and priority date projections, including what causes the establishment of cut-off dates and how the per-country limit is calculated. In addition, the bulletin provides – based on current indications of demand – the following projections of the priority dates which will be reached by the end of fiscal year 2010 for employment-based immigrant visa petitions:

Second Preference Category

China: July through October 2005 India: February through early March 2005

Note that pursuant to INA Section 202(a)(5), if total demand is insufficient to use all available numbers in the second preference category, the State Department predicts that it will reach October through December 2005 priority dates for China and India.

Third Preference Category

Worldwide: April through August 2005 China: June through September 2003 India: January through February 2002 Mexico: January through June 2004 Philippines: April through August 2005

The State Department emphasizes in the bulletin that the above date ranges are estimates only and are subject to fluctuation based on demand.