The December Visa Bulletin issued by the Department of State (DOS) showed significant retrogression in the second preference employment-based (EB) categories for nationals of India and China, and slight forward movement in the third preference EB categories for most foreign nationals.

EB-1

All countries: Current

EB-2

India:                    January 1, 2002 (retrogression of more than 2 years)

China:                  January 1, 2003 (retrogression of 3 years)

All other countries: Current

EB-3 

India:                      May 1, 2001 (forward movement of 1 week)

Mexico:                   April 22, 2001 (no forward movement)

China:                     October 15, 2001 (forward movement of 6 weeks)

Philippines:           September 1, 2002 (forward movement of 1 month)

All other countries: September 1, 2002 (forward movement of 1 month)

For a link to the current Visa Bulletin and listing of all categories, including family-based immigrant visa categories, please visit the DOS website at:  http://www.travel.state.gov/visa/frvi/bulletin/bulletin_1360.html The new cut-off dates are effective on December 1, 2007. At that time, foreign nationals may either file their application for adjustment of status to permanent residence or may apply for an approval of their immigrant visa at a U.S. consular post abroad, if their immigrant visa priority date is before the cut-off date in their category outlined above.

DOS has advised that the retrogression on the second preference category for India and China is a direct result of extraordinarily heavy applicant demand for numbers, primarily by Citizenship and Immigration Services offices for adjustment of status cases. DOS has also advised that additional retrogressions in that category cannot be ruled out during the second quarter of the fiscal year, and that the third preference category is expected to move forward slowly as demand is evaluated.