The October Visa Bulletin introduced many changes to the cutoff date charts and procedures used by the Department of State (DOS). In the newly released November 2015 Visa Bulletin we do not see any change or movement in the dates for the filing chart (DF) however, there are some advancements in the final action chart (FA). If you missed the October 2015 Visa Bulletin it’s best to read that post prior to reading this one, since many of the updates are based on these new changes.

In this post we’ll analyze the November 2015 Visa Bulletin and offer  predictions for the future.

Determination of I-485 Applications

Moving forward, each month USCIS will make a decision whether the cutoff dates for the DF chart can be used as a basis for filing an I-485 (adjustment of status). If not, the Final Action chart, which typically has less favorable dates will be used. To learn USCIS’s decision each month, refer to their official page approx. one week following the release of the visa bulletin.

Employment-Based Category

Many cutoff dates remain current for both the date of filing (DF) chart as well as the Final Action (FA) chart. Below is the chart for the Final Action (FA) dates within the employment based preference category. Continue reading for in-depth descriptions of these changes.

November 2015 visa bulletin

 EB2 Category – Employment Based Second Preference

Apart from China and India the second preference employment based category remains current for both the FA and DF charts. The cutoff dates for the DF chart remain the same from the revised October Bulletin so refer to that chart.

India Cutoff Date: India’s cutoff date for the DF chart is July 1, 2009 and August 1, 2006 for the FA chart.

China Cutoff Date: China’s cutoff date for the DF chart is January 1, 2013 and the FA date moves forward by a month to February 1, 2012.

EB3 Category – Employment Based Third Preference

Good news for those in the employment based third preference category–it remains quite favorable in relation to other categories. The EB3 date worldwide is August 15, 2015 and the DF date also remains at Sept. 1, 2015. These cutoff dates also apply to Mexico.

China Cutoff Date: The cutoff date for China in the FA chart moves forward to January 1, 2012 while the DF date does not change at Oct. 1, 2013.

Philippines Cutoff Date: The cutoff date for the Philippines moves ahead slightly to Jan. 15, 2007 while the DF date is Jan. 1, 2010.

India Cutoff Date: India’s cutoff date advances by a few weeks to April 1, 2004 while the DF date remains at July 1, 2005.

Other Workers Category: As we usually notice in the visa bulletins, the other workers category aligns with the cutoff dates in the overall employment third preference category (in both FA and DF cutoffs). There is an exception for China which has an FA cutoff date of April 1, 2006 and January 1, 2007 for the DF chart.

EB5 Category – Employment Based Fifth Preference

All countries in the employment based fifth preference category are current for the FA and DF charts except China. The FA date for China changes to Nov. 22, 2013 while the DF chart remains at May 1, 2015.

Summary of November 2015 Visa Bulletin

Is your priority date current based on this November 2015 Visa Bulletin analysis? If so, it’s time to contact one of our Fort Lauderdale immigration lawyers! We offer free consultations to help you determine the best course of action.

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Receiving the Official Monthly Visa Bulletin

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