Some Chinese employment-based immigrants may be eligible for a visa sooner than they thought. The latest Visa Bulletin shows the EB-3 category is several years more current than EB-2, creating an opportunity for certain immigrants.
The Visa Bulletin is a monthly schedule that summarizes the availability of immigrant numbers. It is used for both family and employment-based immigration and its release signals which individuals will be permitted to pursue the final step of their immigration process.
The Visa Bulletin breaks down visa availability by country and classification. Under normal circumstances, someone who filed an immigrant petition (I-140) in the second preference (EB-2) category would be able to complete their immigration process and file to receive their green card before someone with the same priority date who filed in the third preference (EB-3).
However, currently the EB-3 preference category for China has a more recent priority date than the EB-2 China. The Department of State has informally confirmed that the advantage for EB-3 China over EB-2 China is expected to continue. In recent history, classification in the second preference category had been highly sought after due to the extensive backlog in the EB-3 employment-based category. The consistent focus on filing in the EB-2 category and resulting lack of interest in filing under EB-3 may have triggered this rare situation.
While it is impossible to say how long this opportunity will last, individuals who are currently waiting for their priority dates to become current under the EB-2 China backlog should consider “downgrading” their petitions to EB-3.
Please contact one of our attorneys at (312) 341-9730 to discuss the opportunity to re-file your I-140 in the EB-3 China category.