Are you waiting for your priority date to become current on the visa bulletin? Then you won’t want to miss this blog post covering the release of the August 2024 visa bulletin.

In this video, attorney Jacob Sapochnick explains what you can expect to see in terms of the movement of the family-sponsored and employment-based visa categories in the month of August.


USCIS Adjustment of Status


For employment-based preference categories, the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) has confirmed that in August it will continue to use the Final Action Dates chart to determine filing eligibility for adjustment of status to permanent residence.

For family-sponsored preference categories, USCIS will continue to use the Dates for Filing chart to determine filing eligibility for adjustment of status to permanent residence.


Highlights of the August 2024 Visa Bulletin


Employment-Based Categories

Final Action and Dates for Filing EB-2 and EB-3 India Advancement 

  • The Final Action date for EB-2 India will advance to July 15, 2012 and the Date for Filing to July 22, 2012
  • The Final Action date for EB-3 India will advance to October 22, 2012 and the Date for Filing to November 1, 2012

Other Categories

  • The Final Action dates and Dates for Filing for the remaining employment-based categories remain the same as the July Visa Bulletin

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Are you seeking to financially sponsor someone who wants to immigrate to the United States?

If so, you will be interested to know that all immediate relatives of U.S. Citizens and individuals falling in the family-based preference categories, are required to submit the Form I-864 Affidavit of Support to obtain permanent residency in the United States.

The form is signed by the U.S. Citizen or legal permanent resident petitioning for the intending immigrant to show they will have the adequate means of financial support while in the U.S. and will not seek financial benefits from the U.S. government.

By signing the affidavit of support, you are accepting financial responsibility for the applicant seeking to immigrate to the United States.

In this video, we share with you everything you need to know regarding your responsibilities and obligations as a financial sponsor of the affidavit of support.

Overview


Who Signs the I-864 Affidavit of Support


The I-864 Affidavit of Support must be completed and signed by the U.S. Citizen or lawful permanent resident who is petitioning for the intending immigrant (also known as the primary sponsor).

The affidavit is essentially a contract between the petitioner and U.S. government, which establishes that the petitioner has enough income or assets to financially support the intending immigrant. Its main purpose is to ensure the alien does not become a public charge on the U.S. government.

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In this video and blog post, we discuss a recent Supreme Court decision finding that U.S. Citizens do not have a fundamental right in having their noncitizen spouses admitted to the United States.

What is this ruling all about?


Department of State v. Muñoz

On June 21, 2024, the Supreme Court ruled in a 6-3 decision in Department of State v. Muñoz that U.S. citizens petitioning for their foreign spouses do not have a constitutional liberty interest in their spouses being admitted to the country.

What’s worse, the court upheld the doctrine of consular nonreviewability, which says that there can be no judicial review of a consular officer’s decision finding a visa applicant inadmissible, except in a very limited class of constitutional cases.

About the Case


The plaintiff in the case, Sandra Muñoz, married her husband, a Salvadoran citizen in 2010, and shared a U.S. Citizen child with him. Thereafter, her husband applied for an immigrant visa at the U.S. Consulate in El Salvador so that they could live together in the United States and sought a waiver of inadmissibility. He denied having any gang affiliations despite being heavily tattooed.

After undergoing several interviews, the consular officer denied his application, citing §1182(a)(3)(A)(ii), a provision that renders inadmissible a noncitizen whom the officer “knows, or has reasonable ground to believe, seeks to enter the United States to engage solely, principally, or incidentally in” certain specified offenses or “any other unlawful activity.”

The plaintiff’s husband assumed that he had been denied a visa based upon the erroneous finding that he was a member of the gang MS-13. He denied being a member and requested the Consulate to reconsider its findings.

After the consulate refused, they appealed to the Department of State, which ultimately agreed with the consulate’s determination.

The couple then sought Congressional intervention and sued the State Department, claiming that they violated the plaintiff’s constitutional liberty interest in her husband’s visa application by failing to give a sufficient reason why he was inadmissible under the “unlawful activity” bar.

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In this video, we share some big news recently announced by the Biden administration.

The President has issued a new executive action on immigration that will soon allow undocumented spouses of U.S. Citizens to apply for permanent residence without having to depart the United States, if they have resided in the United States for at least ten years as of June 17, 2024.

Who does this apply to?

This order applies to undocumented spouses of U.S. Citizens who entered the country without inspection and have continuously resided in the United States since their entry.

Later this summer, the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) and U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) will implement Biden’s new program called “parole in place” which will allow such undocumented spouses to apply for their green cards.

Those who are approved for “parole in place” will be given a three-year period to apply for permanent residency. During this period, spouses can remain with their families in the United States and be eligible for work authorization.

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Do you want to know all about the July 2024 Visa Bulletin? Then you won’t want to miss these new updates.

In this video, attorney Jacob Sapochnick explains visa availability in the month of July and what you can expect to see in the coming months with respect to the movement of the family-sponsored and employment-based visa categories.


Adjustment of Status Filing Chart July 2024


For the month of July, the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) has confirmed that it will continue to use the Final Action Dates chart to determine filing eligibility for adjustment of status to permanent residence for the employment-based preference categories.

For family-sponsored preference categories, USCIS will continue to use the Dates for Filing chart to determine filing eligibility for adjustment of status to permanent residence.


Highlights of the July 2024 Visa Bulletin


Family-Sponsored Categories

Final Action Dates

F-1 Unmarried Sons and Daughters of U.S. Citizens

  • F1 Mexico will advance by more than four months to May 8, 2002
  • F1 Philippines will remain at March 1, 2012
  • F1 All other countries will advance by three and a half months to October 22, 2015

F-2A Spouses and Children of Permanent Residents

  • F2A Mexico will remain at February 1, 2021
  • F2A All other countries will remain at November 16, 2021

F-2B Unmarried Sons and Daughters (21 years of age or older) of Permanent Residents

  • F2B Mexico will remain at July 8, 2004
  • F2B Philippines will remain at October 22, 2011
  • F2B All other countries will advance by one month to May 1, 2016

F3 Married Sons and Daughters of U.S. Citizens

  • F3 Mexico will advance by three months to March 1, 2000
  • F3 Philippines will advance by more than two weeks to September 8, 2002
  • F3 All other countries will advance by one month to April 1, 2010

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Are you interested in self-petitioning for a green card (permanent residence) in 2024? If so, you won’t want to miss this important video.


Overview


Did you know that it is possible to apply for a green card on your own through a self-petition and avoid the process of getting a U.S. job offer? In this video, we discuss the top three ways you can apply for permanent residence without a U.S. company sponsoring you and without a U.S. job offer.


Option #1: Employment-Based First Preference Category, EB-1A Aliens of Extraordinary Ability


The first immigrant visa classification we will discuss is the EB-1A visa. This immigrant visa is suitable for individuals who have attained “extraordinary ability” in the sciences, arts, education, business, or athletics through sustained national or international acclaim in their field.

Those who qualify for the EB-1A category can self-petition for their visa on their own. They do not need a U.S. job offer nor employment sponsorship to apply for permanent residence.

EB-1A is Current on the Visa Bulletin 

Additionally, as of June 2024 the EB-1A category remains current on the Visa Bulletin for all countries except India and China, which means that most applicants will not need to wait to apply for adjustment of status to permanent residence so long as the category remains current. For nationals of India and China please see the EB-1A wait times on the June 2024 Visa Bulletin.

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Did you know that you can apply for a green card without a job offer or even sponsorship from a U.S. employer?

In this video attorney Jacob Sapochnick tells you all you need to know about the EB-2 National Interest Waiver, an employment-based green card option for professionals who are working in an area of national importance to the United States government.

This video focuses specifically on how engineering professionals can qualify for the National Interest Waiver, which is one of the most popular ways to obtain permanent residence in the U.S.

For more information, please keep on watching.


Overview


If you are an engineer that has earned an advanced degree (baccalaureate or higher) or have exceptional ability in your field of engineering, then you may be eligible to self-petition for a green card by applying for the EB-2 National Interest Waiver.

Unlike the EB-3 employment-based green card which requires employment sponsorship, the EB-2 National interest Waiver allows an individual to self-petition for their green card.

This provides applicants with the freedom and flexibility to apply for permanent residence on their own without having to undergo the lengthy labor certification process with a U.S. employer.

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Did you register for the Diversity Visa Lottery in fiscal year 2025? If so, then you won’t want to miss this important video where attorney Jacob Sapochnick shares how you can check the status of your entry online to know whether you have been chosen to apply for a Diversity Visa (DV). Checking the status of your entry is an important step in the application process because the State Department does not notify lottery winners directly.

Learn more about how to check your status in this video.


Overview


Earlier this month, the State Department selected the winners of the fiscal year 2025 Diversity Visa lottery. Registrants can now check whether they have been chosen by navigating to the 2025 Entrant Status Check webpage.

To check your status, you will need to have your confirmation number, enter your last/family name, and year of birth.

Once you have confirmed that you have been selected in the DV lottery, the State Department webpage will include detailed information on how and when you must apply for permanent residence in the United States.

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In this video attorney Jacob Sapochnick discusses the State Department’s release of the June 2024 Visa Bulletin. Learn all about the changes we are seeing in the family-sponsored and employment-based categories for the month of June in this video.


Adjustment of Status Filing Chart June 2024


For the month of June 2024, the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) will continue to use the Dates for Filing Chart for all family-sponsored preference categories, and the Final Action Dates Chart for all employment-based preference categories, when applying for adjustment of status to permanent residence in the United States.


Top Highlights of the June Visa Bulletin


Employment-Based Categories

Unfortunately, for the employment-based categories, the June Visa Bulletin shows no movement.

  • The Dates for Filing chart in June remains unchanged from the previous months.
  • The Final Action Dates for EB-1, EB-2, and EB-5 remain unchanged.
  • Only EB-3 India will advance by one week.

Family-Sponsored Categories

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New H-1B rules are changing the immigration landscape for U.S. employers and foreign workers in the United States.

In this video, attorney Jacob Sapochnick shares all you need to know about these important changes.

Did you Know? In February of this year, the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) published a final rule in the Federal Register that changed the H-1B registration process and enhanced the H-1B program’s integrity to safeguard against fraud. These changes resulted in a significant drop in the number of eligible H-1B registrations for fiscal year 2025 by 40%.


Overview


The H-1B visa is one of the most popular work visas used by professionals with U.S. job offers to work in specialty occupations. To be eligible for this visa category, applicants must have at least a bachelor’s degree or higher, or the equivalent work experience in the specialty occupation.

Current laws limit the annual number of qualifying foreign workers who may be issued the H-1B visa to 65,000 with an additional 20,000 reserved for the H-1B advanced degree exemption for those with U.S. master’s degrees (or higher). Unfortunately, the high demand for the H-1B visa, makes the lottery process extremely competitive considering that thousands upon thousands of employers compete for the very limited number of visas available every year.

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