November Visa Bulletin 2014: What To Do Now

The November visa bulletin was recently published, and it brings a mixture of good and bad news. Here’s what you need to know:

  1. If you fall into the EB-2 India category and your priority date is current for the month of October, make sure to file the I-485 this month (in October). Your window of opportunity will close (for now) as of November 1, when the priority date retrogresses all the way back to Nov. 15, 2005. If you still need to file the I-485, remember to make sure that the package is prepared very carefully – a box marked incorrectly or check made out incorrectly can cause the package to be returned, meaning you miss your chance for now.
  2. If you fall in the EB-3 Philippines category, check your priority date to see if you can file in November. The date for this category advanced all the way to June 1, 2012! Start preparing your I-485 package now, but keep in mind that it cannot be delivered until Nov 1 if your priority date is not current until then.
    • It is anticipated that the EB-3 Philippines date will remain the same as the worldwide date for the foreseeable future. However, the date may retrogress in the future depending on usage. Therefore, as always, plan to file as early as you can to ensure that the priority date does not retrogress before you can file.
  3. If you were selected for the diversity visa lottery, check the visa bulletin to see if you can proceed with the filing now. Keep in mind that you must complete the process within this fiscal year, so you will want to start the process as soon as your number is up.

What if my priority date retrogresses while my I-485 application for permanent residence is pending?

It often happens that while a person’s I-485 application for permanent residence is pending, the priority date retrogresses again, meaning the date is no longer current. If that happens, your I-485 will remain pending with USCIS. You will be able to use your employment authorization document (EAD) and advance parole (AP) while it is pending, and you will be able to renew both of those as well, if needed. USCIS may pre-adjudicate the I-485. This means they will conduct the background check, confirm that you meet all requirements for eligibility, and confirm that all necessary documents are in the file, so that the file is ready for approval when the priority date becomes current. However, USCIS cannot approve the I-485 until the priority date is current again.

Do you need assistance preparing and filing the I-485? Do you need to start the green card process? Contact us today to find out how we can help you make the process seamless and successful! Call 804-396-3412 or email us at