Family Based Immigrant Visas

Chart 1: Application Final Action Dates For Family-Sponsored Preference Cases

When the below chart states that the immigrant’s category is Current (C), no backlog exists in this category for that month. If a category is listed as Unavailable (U), then immigrant visas will not be issued in that category for that month. A foreign national with a birth country other than India, China, Mexico or the Philippines must use the “world-wide” dates to determine whether their priority date is current.

To receive an immigrant visa or an adjustment of status, you must have a priority date prior to the listed date for your category and country, as shown in this chart.

Family-SponsoredWorld-wideChina-mainland bornIndiaMexicoPhilippines
F101 MAR 1301 MAR 1301 MAR 1308 AUG 9715 SEP 08
F2ACCCCC
F2B08 JUL 1408 JUL 1408 JUL 1422 AUG 9801 OCT 08
F315 OCT 0715 OCT 0715 OCT 0722 FEB 9601 JUN 98
F401 JAN 0701 JAN 0715 OCT 0415 DEC 9701 SEP 98

“C” means current and “U” means unavailable.


Chart 2: Dates For Filing Family-Sponsored Visa Applications

When the below chart states that the immigrant’s category is Current (C), an applicant in that category may file immigrant visa application regardless of the priority date. If the foreign national’s country of chargeability (country of birth) is other than India, China, Mexico or Philippines, use the “World-wide” dates to determine the cut-off date.

In order to file an application for immigrant visa or adjustment of status, you must have a priority date prior to the listed date for your category and country, as shown in this chart.

Family-SponsoredWorld-wideChina-mainland bornIndiaMexicoPhilippines
F101 SEP 1301 SEP 1301 SEP 1315 NOV 9915 MAR 09
F2A01 SEP 1901 SEP 1901 SEP 1901 SEP 1901 SEP 19
F2B08 JAN 1508 JAN 1508 JAN 1522 APR 9901 APR 09
F315 APR 0815 APR 0815 APR 0815 JUL 0001 DEC 98
F401 JUL 0701 JUL 0715 JUN 0501 JAN 9901 MAR 99

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Each month, the Department of State (DOS) releases a Visa Bulletin that advises on the availability of immigrant visas. The United States regulates immigration by capping the number of foreign nationals welcomed into the country each year. Each person must have his/her own personal immigrant visa number in order to live permanently in the United States. A foreign national can seek an Immigrant Visa at a U.S. Consulate outside the U.S., or file for an Adjustment of Status with USCIS inside the U.S.

Only a limited number of immigrant visas are available in each category. Immigrant Visas are also limited by the country of chargeability, which is normally the country where the immigrant is born. Those who are eligible for a family based immigrant visa petition (I-130) fall into “preference” category and must wait in line for their category and country of chargeability to accept new applicants.

*NOTE: December, F2A numbers EXEMPT from per-country limit are available to applicants from all countries with priority dates earlier than 15 FEB 15. F2A numbers SUBJECT to per-country limit are available to applicants chargeable to all countries EXCEPT MEXICO with priority dates beginning 15 FEB 15 and earlier than 22 FEB 15. (All F2A numbers provided for MEXICO are exempt from the per-country limit; there are no F2A numbers for MEXICO subject to per-country limit.)

First Preference:

Unmarried Sons and Daughters of Citizens: 23,400 plus any numbers not required for fourth preference.

Second Preference:

Spouses and Children, and Unmarried Sons and Daughters of Permanent Residents: 114,200, plus the number (if any) by which the worldwide family preference level exceeds 226,000, and any unused first preference numbers:

Third Preference:

Skilled Workers, Professionals, and Other Workers: 28.6% of the worldwide level, plus any numbers not required by first and second preferences, not more than 10,000 of which to “Other Workers”.

A. Spouses and Children: 77% of the overall second preference limitation, of which 75% are exempt from the per-country limit.

B. Unmarried Sons and Daughters (21 years of age or older): 23% of the overall second preference limitation.

Third Preference Other Workers Category:

Married Sons and Daughters of Citizens: 23,400, plus any numbers not required by first and second preferences.

Fourth Preference:

Brothers and Sisters of Adult Citizens: 65,000, plus any numbers not required by first three preferences

INA Section 203(e) provides that family-sponsored preference visas be issued to eligible immigrants in the order in which a petition in behalf of each has been filed. Section 203(d) provides that spouses and children of preference immigrants are entitled to the same status, and the same order of consideration, if accompanying or following to join the principal. The visa prorating provisions of Section 202(e) apply to allocations for a foreign state or dependent area when visa demand exceeds the per-country limit. These provisions apply at present to the following oversubscribed chargeability areas: CHINA-mainland born, INDIA, MEXICO, and PHILIPPINES.


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Chart 1: Application Final Action Dates For Family-Sponsored Preference Cases

When the below chart states that the immigrant’s category is Current (C), no backlog exists in this category for that month. If a category is listed as Unavailable (U), then immigrant visas will not be issued in that category for that month. A foreign national with a birth country other than India, China, Mexico or the Philippines must use the “world-wide” dates to determine whether their priority date is current.

To receive an immigrant visa or an adjustment of status, you must have a priority date prior to the listed date for your category and country, as shown in this chart.

Family-SponsoredWorld-wideChina-mainland bornIndiaMexicoPhilippines
F115 MAY 1315 MAY 1315 MAY 1308 AUG 9701 NOV 08
F2ACCCCC
F2B08 AUG 1408 AUG 1408 AUG 1422 AUG 9801 DEC 08
F308 NOV 0708 NOV 0708 NOV 0722 FEB 9601 SEP 98
F401 FEB 0701 FEB 0701 NOV 0415 DEC 9715 DEC 98

“C” means current and “U” means unavailable.


Chart 2: Dates For Filing Family-Sponsored Visa Applications

When the below chart states that the immigrant’s category is Current (C), an applicant in that category may file immigrant visa application regardless of the priority date. If the foreign national’s country of chargeability (country of birth) is other than India, China, Mexico or Philippines, use the “World-wide” dates to determine the cut-off date.

In order to file an application for immigrant visa or adjustment of status, you must have a priority date prior to the listed date for your category and country, as shown in this chart.

Family-SponsoredWorld-wideChina-mainland bornIndiaMexicoPhilippines
F115 NOV 1315 NOV 1315 NOV 1315 NOV 9901 MAY 09
F2A01 OCT 1901 OCT 1901 OCT 1901 OCT 1901 OCT 19
F2B08 FEB 1508 FEB 1508 FEB 1522 APR 9901 JUN 99
F315 MAY 0815 MAY 0815 MAY 0815 JUL 0001 MAR 99
F422 JUL 0722 JUL 0701 JUL 0501 JAN 9915 JUN 99

Are You Experiencing Immigration Issues?

Get answers to your immigration questions to work, invest, marry or live in the U.S.

Start My Phone Consultation

Each month, the Department of State (DOS) releases a Visa Bulletin that advises on the availability of immigrant visas. The United States regulates immigration by capping the number of foreign nationals welcomed into the country each year. Each person must have his/her own personal immigrant visa number in order to live permanently in the United States. A foreign national can seek an Immigrant Visa at a U.S. Consulate outside the U.S., or file for an Adjustment of Status with USCIS inside the U.S.

Only a limited number of immigrant visas are available in each category. Immigrant Visas are also limited by the country of chargeability, which is normally the country where the immigrant is born. Those who are eligible for a family based immigrant visa petition (I-130) fall into “preference” category and must wait in line for their category and country of chargeability to accept new applicants.

*NOTE: December, F2A numbers EXEMPT from per-country limit are available to applicants from all countries with priority dates earlier than 15 FEB 15. F2A numbers SUBJECT to per-country limit are available to applicants chargeable to all countries EXCEPT MEXICO with priority dates beginning 15 FEB 15 and earlier than 22 FEB 15. (All F2A numbers provided for MEXICO are exempt from the per-country limit; there are no F2A numbers for MEXICO subject to per-country limit.)

First Preference:

Unmarried Sons and Daughters of Citizens: 23,400 plus any numbers not required for fourth preference.

Second Preference:

Spouses and Children, and Unmarried Sons and Daughters of Permanent Residents: 114,200, plus the number (if any) by which the worldwide family preference level exceeds 226,000, and any unused first preference numbers:

Third Preference:

Skilled Workers, Professionals, and Other Workers: 28.6% of the worldwide level, plus any numbers not required by first and second preferences, not more than 10,000 of which to “Other Workers”.

A. Spouses and Children: 77% of the overall second preference limitation, of which 75% are exempt from the per-country limit.

B. Unmarried Sons and Daughters (21 years of age or older): 23% of the overall second preference limitation.

Third Preference Other Workers Category:

Married Sons and Daughters of Citizens: 23,400, plus any numbers not required by first and second preferences.

Fourth Preference:

Brothers and Sisters of Adult Citizens: 65,000, plus any numbers not required by first three preferences

INA Section 203(e) provides that family-sponsored preference visas be issued to eligible immigrants in the order in which a petition in behalf of each has been filed. Section 203(d) provides that spouses and children of preference immigrants are entitled to the same status, and the same order of consideration, if accompanying or following to join the principal. The visa prorating provisions of Section 202(e) apply to allocations for a foreign state or dependent area when visa demand exceeds the per-country limit. These provisions apply at present to the following oversubscribed chargeability areas: CHINA-mainland born, INDIA, MEXICO, and PHILIPPINES.


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