News & Analysis as of

Delays at US Consulates Globally

The Department of State (DOS) Bureau of Consular Affairs nonimmigrant visa system suffered an outage last week. Working over the weekend, DOS has made progress restoring the database and is now able to print visas. As such,...more

What’s Going On With Consular Delays? (Part 1)

The U.S. Department of State Bureau of Consular Affairs is currently experiencing technical problems with its passport and visa system. Consular services are operational, but currently issuing documents at a reduced capacity....more

Global Visa Delays Follow Technical Difficulties with State Department System

Last week, the U.S. Department of State’s visa processing database, which controls the issuance of visas and passports at the U.S. consulates abroad, experienced system performance issues (including outages) leading to...more

Department of State Releases August 2014 Visa Bulletin

The bulletin shows minor advancement in the EB-2 category for applicants chargeable to India and China as well as significant advancement in the EB-3 category for applicants chargeable to China and the Philippines, minor...more

Additional Movement for EB-2 India Released in Department of State's August 2014 Visa Bulletin

The August 2014 Visa Bulletin was recently released by the U.S. Department of State (DOS). As outlined in our June 10, 2014, legal update on this issue, the EB-2 category for foreign nationals from India pursuing the...more

Availability of Non-Immigrant Visa Appointments in Canada Extremely Limited During Summer Months

The U.S. Department of State recently announced that due to increasingly heavy demand by Canada-based visa applicants, the seven U.S. visa processing posts in Canada are extremely limited in their ability to accept Third...more

July 2014 Visa Bulletin Shows Significant Movement for India EB-2 Visas

The Department of State has released its July 2014 Visa Bulletin. Each monthly visa bulletin provides the priority cutoff dates for specific countries in order to regulate the flow of visa applications. Foreign nationals are...more

Department of State Releases July 2014 Visa Bulletin

Bulletin shows nearly four years of advancement in the EB-2 category for applicants chargeable to India and minor advancement for applicants chargeable to China as well as significant advancement in the EB-3 category for...more

Significant Movement for EB-2 India in Department of State's July Visa Bulletin

The July 2014 Visa Bulletin has been released by the U.S. Department of State (DOS), and as reported by Charles Oppenheim of the State Department's Visa Office, the EB-2 category for foreign nationals from India pursuing the...more

Significant EB-3 Retrogression in June 2014 Visa Bulletin

The Department of State has released its June 2014 Visa Bulletin. Each monthly visa bulletin provides the priority cutoff dates for specific countries in order to regulate the flow of visa applications. Foreign nationals are...more

Visa Unavailability in EB-3 China Category Implemented by State Department

The new EB-3 China cut-off date for AOS applications that was set to take effect June 1 was implemented early as of May 9. Responding to a query by the American Immigration Lawyers Association regarding the effect of...more

May Visa Bulletin Released

The Department of State has released its May 2014 Visa Bulletin. Each monthly visa bulletin provides the priority cutoff dates for specific countries in order to regulate the flow of visa applications. Foreign nationals are...more

Department of State Releases May 2014 Visa Bulletin

Bulletin shows minor forward movement in the EB-2 China category and the EB-3 India category, with no movement in the EB-2 India category or the EB-3 China category. The U.S. Department of State (DOS) has released its...more

April Visa Bulletin Released

The Department of State has released its April 2014 Visa Bulletin. Each monthly visa bulletin provides the priority cutoff dates for specific countries in order to regulate the flow of visa applications. Foreign nationals are...more

DOS To Begin Conducting Site Visits For J-1 Hosts And Participants

The U.S. Department of State (DOS) has advised designated sponsors within the intern and trainee categories that, beginning in March, representatives from the Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs (ECA) will conduct site...more

U.S. Department of State to Begin Conducting Random J-1 Site Visits

J-1 hosts should review their policies and procedures in anticipation of unannounced site visits. The U.S. Department of State, Office of Private Sector Exchange, will begin conducting random J-1 host site visits...more

March 2014 Visa Bulletin Issued

The State Department released the Visa Bulletin for March 2014 with little movement in employment-based second and third categories....more

Department of State Releases March 2014 Visa Bulletin

Bulletin shows minor to moderate advancement of cutoff dates in all EB-2 and EB-3 categories, with the exception of EB-2 India, which will remain unchanged. The U.S. Department of State (DOS) has released its March...more

Immigration Alert: January 2014

I. H-1B Nonimmigrant Season Opens on April 1, 2014, for Fiscal Year 2015 - As most H-1B employers know, there is an annual quota on the number of new H-1B petitions that can be approved each federal fiscal year. The...more

In-Person Visa Interviews May Now Be Waived By Consular Officers For Visa Renewals Of Certain Foreign National Applicants

In January 2012, the U.S. Department of State introduced a two-year visa interview waiver pilot program, which was the cornerstone of President Obama’s initiative to improve and speed up the visa process for certain...more

Heavy Demand Results In Untimely Retrogression For EB-2 India

Employers and their attorneys monitor the U.S. Department of State (DOS) Visa Bulletin to determine when sponsored employees may file adjustment of status applications on Form I-485 (the last step in the permanent residence...more

New Countries Eligible to Participate in the H-2A and H-2B Visa Programs

The Department of Homeland Security and the Department of State have added four countries to the list of countries whose nationals are eligible to participate in the H-2A and H-2B Visa programs for the coming year. The...more

Non-Immigrant Visa Interview Waiver Program Now Permanent

In January 2012, the U.S. Department of State (DOS) introduced a pilot program waiving visa interviews for certain types of visa applicants. The DOS has announced that the visa interview waiver program is now permanent. ...more

Department of State Releases January 2014 Visa Bulletin

Bulletin shows no movement of cutoff dates for individuals born in India in the EB-2 and EB-3 preference categories; the cutoff date for individuals born in China in the EB-3 category continues to move ahead of the EB-2...more

Update: Employment-Based Immigrant Visa Numbers and Priority Date Cutoffs

Department of State’s Visa Office comments on demand in the employment-based immigrant visa categories, indicating an early retrogression of the cutoff date for EB-2 India. Charles Oppenheim, Chief of the Visa Control...more

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