By: Reeves & Associates
The Department of State’s July 2010 Visa Bulletin is a significant step forward in allowing families to reunite. This is especially the case for Filipino beneficiaries.
Under the new visa allocation instructions, Lawful Permanent Residents who petitioned their spouses or unmarried minor children prior to the date of July 1, 2008 can apply to immigrate or adjust status. This is an increase of six months in this category since the June 2010 visa bulletin and a nineteen-month increase since the May 2010 bulletin.
Further, under the new visa bulletin, Lawful Permanent Residents who petitioned their adult, unmarried sons or daughters prior to March 1, 2000, are now able to apply to have their family members immigrate or adjust status. This new March 1, 2000 threshold is a progression of one full year in processing since the June 2010 visa bulletin, and a jump forward of sixteen months since the May 2010 visa bulletin.
Processing for the petitions of U.S. citizens on behalf of family members have also surged forward in recent months. Petitions filed by U.S. Citizens on behalf of unmarried adult sons and daughters prior to September 1, 1995 are now eligible for processing—a step forward of 10 months since the May 2010 visa bulletin. Meanwhile, petitions filed by U.S. Citizens on behalf of married adult sons and daughters prior to May 1, 1993 are now eligible for processing—an increase of one year since the processing dates indicated in the visa bulletin just two months ago.
Movement in the sibling category has been also been significant. In May of 2010, the visa bulletin indicated that U.S. Citizen Filipinos who filed their petitions prior to December 8, 1987 were able to have their brother or sister’s immigration proceed. According to the new July 2010 visa bulletin, such applicants are eligible to proceed if their petition was filed by prior to April 1, 1989.
Other country categories and employment-based categories have also seen positive movement in recent months. Those waiting in line for their visa numbers to become available for processing should bear in mind that a preference category’s cutoff does not always move in a linear progression (such as one month forward cutoff date for each month). Cutoff visa processing dates depend upon the available supply of visas within a category and demand within that category. As such, visa issuance may retrogress if the respective categories become oversubscribed. Beneficiaries holding priority dates ripe for processing should not hesitate in undergoing the immigration process.