The Department of State (DOS)
Visa Bulletin for July 2008 indicates that employment-based
third preference (EB-3) will be "unavailable" in July, and will
remain unavailable for the remainder of Fiscal Year 2008 (i.e.
until October 2008). All other EB categories are unchanged from
the June Visa Bulletin.
EB-3 becoming "unavailable" means that no EB-3 adjustment of
status applications will be accepted by USCIS after June 30,
2008, regardless of priority date. Persons who presently have
an EB-3 adjustment of status application (Form I-485) pending at
USCIS will see these applications held until their priority
dates become current and available.
In discussing the July Visa Bulletin, DOS
advises that making EB-3 unavailable was necessary due to high
demand for numbers in this category, principally by USCIS for
adjudication of I-485 applications. DOS states that the annual
numerical limit for EB-3 will be exhausted by the end of June.
However, EB-3 "will return to the cut-off
dates established for June in
October, the first month of the new fiscal year." This means
that we anticipate any person who was current under EB-3 in June
will be current again in October.
Again, beginning July 1, 2008, the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration
Services will not accept any new EB-3 category I-485 adjustment
of status applications, regardless of the priority date or
the nationality of the applicant. Jackson & Hertogs
encourages all individuals in the EB-3 category who are eligible
to file an I-485 application to do so before June 30, 2008.
Such an application must be received by USCIS no later than
June 30, 2008, which means that applications must be filed by
June 27, 2008. If the I-485 application is received by USCIS
on or before June 30, 2008, the applicant is eligible to apply
for both the Employment Authorization Document (EAD) and Advance
Parole (AP) while the I-485 remains pending. USCIS will also not
be able to adjudicate any pending I-485 in the EB-3 category
until the underlying priority date becomes current. For persons
with pending EB-3 AOS applications that are current under the
June 2008 Visa Bulletin, they will be current again in October
2008, based on the DOS guidance.
There were no changes in any other employment-based category on the July
Visa Bulletin. However, DOS advises that EB-2 for India and
China (currently cut off at April 1, 2004) may require
adjustment, if it appears that EB-2 applicants from "all other
countries" would utilize all available EB-2 numbers for the
For general information on visa retrogression, please see our
FAQ on this subject. For more information on the Visa
Bulletin and country quota movements, including information
about movement in the Family-Based Quotas, please see our
DOS Visa Bulletin and Quota Movement page, which includes
detailed nationality-specific charts of quota movement for the