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Visa Bulletin for April 1998

Cite as "AILA InfoNet Doc. No. 98030959 (posted Mar. 9, 1998)"

United States Department of State
Bureau of Consular Affairs

VISA BULLETIN
Number 85
Volume VII
Washington, D.C.

IMMIGRANT NUMBERS FOR APRIL 1998

A. STATUTORY NUMBERS

1. This bulletin summarizes the availability of immigrant numbers during April. Consular officers are required to report to the Department of State documentarily qualified applicants for numerically limited visas; the Immigration and Naturalization Service reports applicants for adjustment of status. Allocations were made, to the extent possible under the numerical limitations, for the demand received by March 9th in the chronological order of the reported priority dates.

If the demand could not be satisfied within the statutory or regulatory limits, the category or foreign state in which demand was excessive was deemed oversubscribed. The cut-off date for an oversubscribed category is the priority date of the first applicant who could not be reached within the numerical limits. Only applicants who have a priority date earlier than the cut-off date may be allotted a number. Immediately that it becomes necessary during the monthly allocation process to retrogress a cut-off date, supplemental requests for numbers will be honored only if the priority date falls within the new cut-off date.

2. Section 201 of the Immigration and Nationality Act (INA) sets an annual minimum family-sponsored preference limit of 226,000. The worldwide level for annual employment-based preference immigrants is at least 140,000. Section 202 prescribes that the per-country limit for preference immigrants is set at 7% of the total annual family-sponsored and employment-based preference limits, i.e., 25,620. The dependent area limit is set at 2%, or 7,320.

3. Section 203 of the INA prescribes preference classes for allotment of immigrant visas as follows:

FAMILY-SPONSORED PREFERENCES

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

Second: 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:

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

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

EMPLOYMENT-BASED PREFERENCES

First: Priority Workers: 28.6% of the worldwide employment-based preference level, plus any numbers not required for fourth and fifth preferences.

Second: Members of the Professions Holding Advanced Degrees or Persons of Exceptional Ability: 28.6% of the worldwide employment-based preference level, plus any numbers not required by first preference.

Third: 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."

Fourth: Certain Special Immigrants: 7.1% of the worldwide level.

Fifth: Employment Creation: 7.1% of the worldwide level, not less than 3,000 of which reserved for investors in a targeted rural or high-unemployment area, and 3,000 set aside for investors in regional centers by Sec. 610 of P.L. 102-395.

4. INA Section 203(e) provides that family-sponsored and employment-based 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.

5. On the chart below, the listing of a date for any class indicates that the class is oversubscribed (see paragraph 1); "C" means current, i.e., numbers are available for all qualified applicants; and "U" means unavailable, i.e., no numbers are available. (NOTE: Numbers are available only for applicants whose priority date is earlier than the cut-off date listed below.)

PREFERENCES

	    All Charge-

	    ability Areas   CHINA-   

	    Except Those    mainland    

	    Listed	    born	 INDIA	MEXICO	PHILIPPINES

Family



1st          08SEP96	   08SEP96	08SEP96	15JUL93	  29DEC86



2A*          22NOV93	   22NOV93	22NOV93	15JAN93	  22NOV93



2B           15SEP91	   15SEP91	15SEP91	15JUN91   15SEP91



3rd          01NOV94	   01NOV94	01NOV94	15JUN89	  15NOV86



4th          22NOV87	   22NOV87	22JAN86	15FEB87	  22APR78

*NOTE: For April, 2A numbers EXEMPT from per-country limit are available to applicants from all countries with priority dates earlier than 15JAN93. 2A numbers SUBJECT to per-country limit are available to applicants chargeable to all countries EXCEPT MEXICO with priority dates beginning 15JAN93 and earlier than 22NOV93. (All 2A numbers provided for MEXICO are exempt from the per-country limit; there are no 2A numbers for MEXICO subject to per-country limit.)

	       All Charge-

	       ability Areas   CHINA-   

	       Except Those    mainland    

	       Listed	       born	INDIA	MEXICO	PHILIPPINES

Employment-

  Based



1st               C	      01JUN97	  C	  C	    C   



2nd               C	      22APR96  08AUG96     C	    C 



3rd               C	      08FEB94  08MAY95	   C	    C   



  Other        08MAR91	      08MAR91  08MAR91	08MAR91	 08MAR91

    Workers



4th               C	         C	  C	   C	    C



  Certain      01AUG97	      01AUG97  01AUG97	01AUG97	 01AUG97   

    Religious				  

    Workers



5th               C               C        C        C	    C 



  Targeted        C               C        C        C	    C 

    Employment Areas/

    Regional Centers

The Department of State has available a recorded message with visa availability information which can be heard at (202) 663-1541. This recording will be updated in the middle of each month with information on cut-off dates for the following month.

B. DIVERSITY IMMIGRANT (DV) CATEGORY

Section 203(c) of the Immigration and Nationality Act provides 55,000 immigrant visas each fiscal year to permit immigration opportunities for persons from countries other than the principal sources of current immigration to the United States. DV visas are divided among six geographic regions. Not more than 3,850 visas (7% of the 55,000 visa limit) may be provided to immigrants from any one country.

For April, immigrant numbers in the DV category are available to qualified DV-98 applicants chargeable to all regions/eligible countries on a "CURRENT" basis, except as listed below.

		 All DV Charge-

                 ability Areas

                 Except Those

  Region         Listed Separately

 

  AFRICA              AF 30,610        



  ASIA                AS 11,006	     EXCEPT:	BANGLADESH  AS 6,205

 

  EUROPE              EU 17,711      EXCEPT:	ALBANIA   EU 11,902

						BULGARIA  EU 16,180  

                                                 

  NORTH AMERICA       CURRENT

   (BAHAMAS)

 

  OCEANIA             OC    584  

 

  SOUTH AMERICA,      CURRENT

    CENTRAL AMERICA,

    and the CARIBBEAN

(NOTE: It remains to be seen if applicant demand will increase sufficiently to require oversubscription of any other region/country in a subsequent month.)

Entitlement to immigrant status in the DV category lasts only through the end of the fiscal (visa) year for which the applicant is selected in the lottery. The year of entitlement for all applicants registered for the DV-98 program ends as of September 30, 1998. DV visas may not be issued to DV-98 applicants after that date. Similarly, spouses and children accompanying or following to join DV-98 principals are only entitled to derivative DV status until September 30, 1998. DV visa availability through the very end of FY-1998 cannot be taken for granted. Numbers could be exhausted prior to September 30. Once all numbers provided by law for the DV-98 program have been used, no further issuances will be possible.

C. RECENT AMENDMENT TO THE VISA PORTION OF THE FOREIGN AFFAIRS MANUAL (FAM)

The following Transmittal Letter (TL), which updates the visa portion (Vol. 9) of the FAM, is now available:

VISA-176, dated February 6, 1998, Part IV, Appendix C for: Armenia; Azerbaijani, Cyprus; El Salvador; France; Georgia; Guyana; Hong Kong; Japan; Liechtenstein; New Zealand; Serbia and Montenegro; South Africa; Switzerland; Taiwan; Togo; Tunisia; United Kingdom; Ukraine; and Vietnam. Cost $24.25.

A check payable to the Department of State must accompany the order. This TL may be obtained from:

Distribution Services (OIS/PS/PR)
Room B847 A
Department of State
Washington, D.C. 20520

OBTAINING THE MONTHLY VISA BULLETIN: The Department of State's Bureau of Consular Affairs offers the monthly Visa Bulletin on the Internet's World Wide Web. The Internet Web address to access the Bulletin is:

http://travel.state.gov

From the home page, select the Visa section which contains the Visa Bulletin.

In addition to the Internet, the Visa Bulletin can be accessed and downloaded from the Consular Affairs electronic bulletin board. Those with a computer and modem should dial (301) 946-4400. The login is travel; the password is info. No special software is required.

Individuals may also obtain the Visa Bulletin by fax. From a fax phone, dial (202) 647-3000. Follow the prompts and enter in the code 1038 to have each Bulletin faxed.

(The Department of State also has available a recorded message with visa cut-off dates which can be heard at (202) 663-1541. The recording is updated in the middle of each month with information on cut-off dates for the following month.)

To be placed on the Department of State's Visa Bulletin mailing list or to change an address, please write to:

Visa Bulletin
Visa Office
Department of State
Washington, D.C. 20522-0106

Only addresses within the U.S. postal system may be placed on the mailing list. Please include a recent mailing label when reporting changes or corrections of address; the Postal Service does NOT automatically notify the Visa Office of address changes. (Obtaining the Visa Bulletin by mail is a much slower option than any of the alternatives mentioned above.)

The Visa Bulletin can also be contacted by E-mail at the following address:

VISABULLET@SA1WPOA.US-STATE.GOV

(The Visa Bulletin is not distributed by E-mail, however.)

Department of State Publication 9514
CA/VO:March 9, 1998

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