Visa Bulletin for December 1997


A. STATUTORY NUMBERS (This communication provides priority dates and other transitional information as taken from the State Department's Visa Bulletin released November 12, 1997.) On the following chart, the listing of a date for any class indicates that the class is oversubscribed; "C" means current, i.e., numbers are available for all qualified applicants; and "U" means unavailable, i.e., no numbers are available.

     All Charge-
     ability Areas  CHINA
     Except Those   Mainland
     Listed         born      INDIA     MEXICO    PHILIPPINES 

1st  01SEP95        01SEP95   01SEP95   01MAY93   23OCT86

2A*  15JUL93        15JUL93   15JUL93   010CT92   15JUL93

2B   15JUN91        15JUN91   15JUN91   08MAY91   15JUN91

3rd  01JUN94        01JUN94   01JUN94   01JAN89   01JUL86

4th  22APR87        22APR87   08AUG85   01OCT86   10MAR78

*NOTE:  For DECEMBER, 2A numbers EXEMPT from per-country limit are 
available to applicants from all countries with priority dates
earlier than 01OCT92.  2A numbers SUBJECT to per-country limit are
available to applicants chargeable to all countries EXCEPT MEXICO
with priority dates beginning 01OCT92 and earlier than 15JUL93. 
(2A numbers subject to per-country limit are "unavailable" for
applicants chargeable to MEXICO.)


     All Charge-
     ability Areas  CHINA-
     Except Those   mainland
     Listed         born      INDIA     MEXICO    PHILIPPINES 

1st       C         01JAN97   C         C         C

2nd       C         08OCT95   01DEC95   C         C

3rd       C         01NOV93   15DEC94   C         C

Other     01JUN90   01JUN90   01JUN90   01JUN90   01JUN90

4th       C         C         C         C         C

Certain   15FEB97   15FEB97   15FEB97   15FEB97   15FEB97
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 provide 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 DECEMBER, immigrant numbers in the DV category are available to qualified applicants chargeable to all regions/eligible countries on a CURRENT basis.

(NOTE: For January, a rank cut-off will be establish for Africa and Asia (regional) as well as Albania (country) to hold issuances within the numerical limits. All other areas will remain "Current" for January. It remains to be seen if applicant demand will increase sufficiently to require oversubscription of any other region/country for 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.


Continued heavy use of China-mainland born visa numbers has oversubscribed this chargeability for December, and has required the established of cut-off dates for the Employment FIRST, SECOND, and THIRD preferences. (The October Visa Bulletin (number 79) contained an item (D) which alerted readers that oversubscription of these preferences was possible.) In the Employment First and Second preferences, the heavy demand for numbers has been primarily from adjustment of status cases at INS offices. CHINA-mainland born Employment Third preference demand comes not only from adjustment of status cases, but also from consular visa applications by following-to-join family members of persons who obtained status under the Chinese Student Protection Act; many of those cases have relatively early priority dates. Cut-off date movement in these Employment preferences categories during the coming months depends on the extent of future visa demand. No specific predictions are possible at this time.


There has been no movement in INDIA Employment SECOND and THIRD preference cut-off dates for the month of December. Applicant demand in these categories continues to be heavy. The rate at which a cut-off date advances depends on how many applicants in each category need visa numbers, and on their priority dates. A cut-off date is established when there are no more numbers available for a month. Since it is not possible to determine how many applicants with relatively early priority dates will use number each month, there is no way to predict the rate of cut-off date movement in the INDIA Employment Second and Third preferences during the coming months.

Cite as AILA Doc. No. 97111359.