Department of State issues May US Visa bulletin

The May 2016 US visa bulletin has been issued by the Department of State and shows little movement in regards to Final Action Dates for employment-based immigration visa applications. The result is that the new US visa bulletin has given little benefit to prospective immigrants wanting to complete the immigration process to gain lawful permanent residence in the US.

In March this year, the demand for EB-1 US visas for immigrants nearly doubled in comparison to just the month before, meaning that fewer visas are available for reallocation to the EB-2 US visa categories. There was no movement at all for second and third preference categories for employment visas for applications born in the Chinese mainland, although Indian second and third category preferences did move up by a few weeks.

The May bulletin showed a complete lack of movement for all changeability areas, other than those already listed, in the third preference. Mexico also witnessed no movement though the third preference category for the Philippines did move up by several months, as did the other workers category. In a number of instances, immigrants elected to change from EB-3 US visas to EB-2 US visas owing to the processing times for the latter being considerably faster once approval is given to the I-140 employment-based petition.

A cutoff date has been put in place for nationals of El Salvador, Honduras and Guatemala in the EB-4 US visa category because of the high demand, while it is expected that the processing time for Chinese nationals’ EB-5 US visas will now be much quicker.