March 2018 Visa Bulletin Analysis

***Updated February 20, 2018***

For Family-Sponsored Filings:
You must use the Dates for Filing chart (Chart B) in the Department of State Visa Bulletin for March 2018.

February 13, 2018-  Similar to February and consistent with predictions, priority dates continue moving forward in the March visa bulletin. No retrogression occurred in any employment category that we analyze.  EB-1 has been the bright spot for those who qualify; it is current across the board and expected to remain so for the next several months.  Family-Based dates also saw a steady forward progression and the availability of filing under Chart B is expected to continue again this month.

Employment-Based Movement

For February, all dates remained current or advanced.

EB-1 is current across the board for all countries.

EB-2 Worldwide remains current.

EB-2 India moved forward one week, landing at 15DEC08.

EB-2 China advanced slightly more than two months to 08DEC13.  Notice that the priority date for EB-3 China is more advanced than EB-2? It's possible to convert from EB-2 to EB-3 in order to shorten the application process.  Speak with us to determine whether "downgrading" is an option for you.

EB-3 Stays current Worldwide. China advanced two months to 15NOV14. India advanced at the same pace as last month, moving forward one month to 01JAN07.

Family-Based Movement

Chart B, also called "Dates for Filing," has been available to Family-Based applicants for the past few months and will likely be so for March, too.  This chart allows submission of the I-485 in advance of a priority date becoming current.  Advance filing is particularly beneficial because employment authorization and advance parole can be obtained as a benefit of a pending adjustment (I-485) case. Chart B availability is typically posted within a week of the visa bulletin, so here we examine the use of Chart A.  We post updates on chart availability as that information is released to the public.

F1 (Unmarried Sons and Daughters of US Citizens) saw some slight forward movement, an improvement over February.  Worldwide, China, and India all moved forward one week to 22MAR11.  Mexico moved forward three weeks but is still hopelessly backlogged at 22JUL96.  The Philippines again was the big mover, advancing more than two months to 15OCT05.

F2A (Spouses and Children of Permanent Residents) moved forward at least three weeks in all columns and are backlogged approximately one year at present.  F2B (Unmarried Sons and Daughters of Permanent Residents) for Worldwide, China, and India all advanced six weeks to 01MAR11.  

F3 (Married Sons and Daughters of US Citizens) continued advancing steadily a month each for Worldwide, China, and India, landing at 15DEC05.  This category has seen good advancement in recent months and the trend is expected to continue.

The F4 category (Brothers and Sisters of Adult US Citizens) for Worldwide and China moved ahead one month and are are both at 22AUG04.  India moved forward three weeks to 01FEB04.