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USCIS Transfers I-485s to NSC and TSC

VIA AILA

AILA’s Service Center Operations (SCOPS) Liaison Committee reports that
in anticipation of the next phase of Bi-Specialization, I-485
applications are being transferred from CSC to NSC, and from VSC to
TSC. This includes cases that are subject to visa retrogression and
security/background checks. Transfer notices will be sent and the USCIS
online system will be updated when a transfer occurs. SCOPS has
confirmed that transferred cases will go into the queue based on
original filing date and not the date of the transfer.

VISA BULLETIN FOR JANUARY 2007

Visa Bulletin

Number 101
Volume VIII
Washington, D.C.

VISA BULLETIN FOR JANUARY 2007

A. STATUTORY NUMBERS

1.
This bulletin summarizes the availability of immigrant numbers during
January. Consular officers are required to report to the Department of
State documentarily qualified applicants for numerically limited visas;
the Bureau of Citizenship and Immigration Services in the Department of
Homeland Security reports applicants for adjustment of status.
Allocations were made, to the extent possible under the numerical
limitations, for the demand received by December 7th 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”.

Schedule
A Workers: Employment First, Second, and Third preference Schedule A
applicants are entitled to up to 50,000 “recaptured” numbers.

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.)

Fam-ily All Charge- ability Areas Except Those Listed CHINA-mainland born INDIA MEXICO PHILIPP-INES
1st  22APR01 22APR01 22APR01 01JAN94 15DEC91
2A 15MAR02 15MAR02 15MAR02 15MAR00 15MAR02
2B 08APR97 08APR97 08APR97 01MAR92 08SEP96
3rd 01JAN99 01JAN99 01JAN99 01JAN95 08FEB91
4th 08JAN96 22JUN95 01OCT95 22JAN94 01JUL84

*NOTE:
For January, 2A numbers EXEMPT from per-country limit are available to
applicants from all countries with priority dates earlier than 15MAR00.
2A numbers SUBJECT to per-country limit are available to applicants
chargeable to all countries EXCEPT MEXICO with priority dates beginning
15MAR00 and earlier than 15MAR02. (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
Except
Those
Listed

CHINA-
mainland born
INDIA MEXICO PHILIP-PINES
Employ-ment
-Based

         
1st C C C C C
2nd C 22APR05 08JAN03 C C
3rd 01AUG02 01AUG02 08MAY01 15MAY01 01AUG02
Schedule
A
Workers
15JUN04 15JUN04 15JUN04 15JUN04 15JUN04
Other
Workers
01OCT01 01OCT01 01OCT01 01OCT01 01OCT01
4th C C C C C
Certain Religious Workers C C C C C
Iraqi & Afghani Translators 18SEP06 18SEP06 18SEP06 18SEP06 18SEP06
5th C C C C C
Targeted Employ-ment Areas/
Regional Centers
C C C C C

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

Employment
Third Preference Other Workers Category: Section 203(e) of the NACARA,
as amended by Section 1(e) of Pub. L. 105 – 139, provides that once the
Employment Third Preference Other Worker (EW) cut-off date has reached
the priority date of the latest EW petition approved prior to November
19, 1997, the 10,000 EW numbers available for a fiscal year are to be
reduced by up to 5,000 annually beginning in the following fiscal year.
This reduction is to be made for as long as necessary to offset
adjustments under the NACARA program. Since the EW cut-off date reached
November 19, 1997 during Fiscal Year 2001, the reduction in the EW
annual limit to 5,000 began in Fiscal Year 2002.

B. DIVERSITY IMMIGRANT (DV) CATEGORY

Section
203(c) of the Immigration and Nationality Act provides a maximum of up
to 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. The Nicaraguan and
Central American Relief Act (NACARA) passed by Congress in November
1997 stipulates that beginning with DV-99, and for as long as
necessary, up to 5,000 of the 55,000 annually-allocated diversity visas
will be made available for use under the NACARA program. This reduction has resulted in the DV-2007 annual limit being reduced to 50,000.
DV visas are divided among six geographic regions. No one country can
receive more than seven percent of the available diversity visas in any
one year.

For
January, immigrant numbers in the DV category are available to
qualified DV-2007 applicants chargeable to all regions/eligible
countries as follows. When an allocation cut-off number is shown, visas
are available only for applicants with DV regional lottery rank numbers
BELOW the specified allocation cut-off number:

Region All DV Chargeability Areas Except Those Listed Separately  
AFRICA 11,300

Except:
Egypt
10,900
Ethiopia
9,000
Nigeria
7,000

ASIA 3,800  
EUROPE 9,900  
NORTH AMERICA (BAHAMAS) 7  
OCEANIA 460  
SOUTH AMERICA, and the CARIBBEAN 700  

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-2007 program ends as of September 30, 2007. DV visas may not be
issued to DV-2007 applicants after that date. Similarly, spouses and
children accompanying or following to join DV-2007 principals are only
entitled to derivative DV status until September 30, 2007. DV visa
availability through the very end of FY-2007 cannot be taken for
granted. Numbers could be exhausted prior to September 30.

C. ADVANCE NOTIFICATION OF THE DIVERSITY (DV) IMMIGRANT CATEGORY RANK CUT-OFFS WHICH WILL APPLY IN FEBRUARY

For
February, immigrant numbers in the DV category are available to
qualified DV-2007 applicants chargeable to all regions/eligible
countries as follows. When an allocation cut-off number is shown, visas
are available only for applicants with DV regional lottery rank numbers
BELOW the specified allocation cut-off number:

Region All DV Chargeability Areas Except Those Listed Separately  
AFRICA 11,850

Except:
Ethiopia 10,800
Nigeria 7,600

ASIA 3,800  
EUROPE 10,400  
NORTH AMERICA (BAHAMAS) 7  
OCEANIA 550  
SOUTH AMERICA, and the CARIBBEAN 825  

 

D. SCHEDULE A WORKER VISA CATEGORY

A
small amount of Schedule A Worker numbers which had been provided to
consular offices for November use were returned unused after the end of
the month and thus became available for reallocation. All remaining
Schedule A Worker numbers have been made available to applicants whose
priority dates are within the January cut-off date (15JUN04). The
Schedule A Worker category will be removed from the listings beginning
with the February cut-off dates.

E. OTHER NOTES ON VISA AVAILABILITY

FAMILY:
Demand for numbers in the Mexico and Philippines Family Third
preference category has been very heavy during the first quarter. No
movement of those cut-off dates can be expected, and continued heavy
demand may require the retrogression of the dates at some point in the
future.

EMPLOYMENT:
Demand for numbers in the Employment Third “Other Workers” category, as
well as the China and India Employment Second preference categories,
has been escalating. No movement in those cut-off dates will be
possible until the current level of demand subsides.

F. OBTAINING THE MONTHLY VISA BULLETIN

The Department of State’s Bureau of Consular Affairs offers the monthly “Visa Bulletin” on the INTERNET’S WORLDWIDE 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.

To
be placed on the Department of State’s E-mail subscription list for the
“Visa Bulletin”, please send an E-mail to the following E-mail address:

listserv@calist.state.gov

and in the message body type:
Subscribe Visa-Bulletin First name/Last name
(example: Subscribe Visa-Bulletin Sally Doe)

To be removed from the Department of State’s E-mail subscription list for the “Visa Bulletin”, send an e-mail message to the
following E-mail address :

listserv@calist.state.gov

and in the message body type: Signoff Visa-Bulletin

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

Readers may submit questions regarding Visa Bulletin related items by E-mail at the following address:

VISABULLETIN@STATE.GOV

(This address cannot be used to subscribe to the Visa Bulletin.)

Department of State Publication 9514
CA/VOecember 7, 2006

Senator’s wife in hiding after deportation threat

Via CNN.com
12/05/2006

ATLANTA, Georgia (AP) — State Sen. Curt Thompson has been a
strong advocate of immigration rights, once speaking in Spanish from
the steps of the Georgia Capitol against the adoption of some of the
nation’s strictest immigration controls.

Now Thompson’s Colombian-born wife is in hiding as federal immigration officials try to deport her.

Sascha
Herrera, 28, has been in hiding since Immigration and Customs
Enforcement officers arrived at her home November 28 with an order to
remove her from the U.S. She was not home at the time.

Her
attorney, Charles Kuck, claims she was duped by a man handling her
immigration requests and that she never received the immigration
notices that triggered her deportation order. While Kuck says neither
he nor her husband know where Herrera is, he said that she will turn
herself in Tuesday.

“It’s the right thing to do. She needs to get the law to work for her,” Kuck said.

Kuck
filed a petition Monday to halt her deportation order and reopen her
case, arguing that a man filed an asylum petition on her behalf without
her knowledge and before her husband sponsored her green card
application based on their April marriage.

The deportation order
stems from Herrera’s repeated failure to appear before a judge on the
asylum application, which Kuck said she did not know had been filed.

The
case hinges on whether Herrera received a notice to appear in court,
and whether the asylum application could have been filed without her
knowledge, said Victor Cerda, former general counsel for Immigration
and Customs Enforcement.

According to Kuck, Herrera came to the
U.S. — where her parents have been living — on a visitor visa in
2003. She applied for an extension to the visa through a “notario” — a
man who claimed he was qualified to handle legal immigration matters —
but did not get it until 20 days before the extension was due to expire.

The
notario then suggested an asylum application, which Herrera signed, but
she got a “bad vibe” from the man and decided not to proceed, Kuck said.

Later
in 2004, she was accepted as a student at Kennesaw State University,
which earned her a student visa. She then told the notario she did not
want anything to do with him.

She met Thompson last year and they
got married in April, when he applied for her to become a permanent
resident. Kuck said Herrera’s husband, a Democrat and attorney, would
not comment on the case.

But in the meantime, the notario filed
the asylum application, listing his address as hers. A telephone number
listed for the notario, identified as Tomas Vilela, was being answered
Monday by a fax machine.

Cerda said the deportation order in the
asylum case would trump any pending green card application and trigger
mandatory detention.

Her decision to hide could hurt her request
for a judge’s stay on deportation, Cerda said. If she turns herself in,
she could remain in the U.S. while her petition is pending, either in
jail or released on bond.

U.S. Department of State – Priority Dates for Family Based Preferences, October 2006

U.S. Department of State – Priority Dates for Family Based Preferences, October 2006
NOTE: This information has been obtained
from the Department of State visa bulletin.

Family

All
Chargeability Areas

Except Those Listed

CHINA-mainland
born

INDIA

MEXICO

PHILIP-PINES

1st

01MAY00

01MAY00

01MAY00

01JAN93

01NOV91

2A

22APR01

22APR01

22APR01

15OCT99

22APR01

2B

01JAN97

01JAN97

01JAN97

15FEB92

22JUL96

3rd

22OCT98

22OCT98

22OCT98

01JAN94

01AUG90

4th

15SEP95

01FEB95

01AUG95

15SEP93

01APR84

 

1st:

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

2A:

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

2B:

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

3rd:

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

4th:

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

19 arrested in major marriage and immigration fraud scheme

Via ICE.gov
News Release
September 7, 2006

ALEXANDRIA, VA  –
Nineteen of 22 charged individuals involved in a marriage and
immigration fraud scheme operating in Northern Virginia, Maryland, and
the District of Columbia were arrested today as part of a three-year
law enforcement task force operation. 

Chuck Rosenberg, United States Attorney for the Eastern District of
Virginia; William Reid, Assistant Director of Investigations, U.S.
Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE); Chief M. Douglas Scott,
Arlington County Police Department; Richard Trodden, Arlington County
Commonwealth’s Attorney;  Colonel David Rohrer, Fairfax County Police
Department; Greg Sebben, Special Agent-in-Charge, Office of the
Inspector General, Department of Commerce; Charles Pine, Special
Agent-in-Charge, Internal Revenue Service; Stephen Brunette, Special
Agent-in-Charge, Diplomatic Security Service, Department of State; and,
Phyllis Howard, Washington District Director, Bureau of Citizenship and
Immigration Services, U.S. Department of Homeland Security, made the
announcement at a press conference at the Arlington County Courthouse
following the arrests. 

As described in the government’s affidavit, nine defendants are
alleged to have arranged marriages between aliens seeking immigration
benefits and United States citizens willing to enter into a sham
marriage for money.  The next ten defendants are aliens who are alleged
to have entered into a sham marriage to gain immigration benefits and
avoid potential removal from the United States.  The final three
defendants are United States citizens who married aliens and are
alleged to have signed false documents to assist the alien in obtaining
immigration benefits through fraud.  

Aliens who participated in the fraud generally paid large fees,
between $2,500 and $6,000, to the defendants who facilitated sham
marriages.  In exchange, the aliens were introduced to United States
citizens, generally on the day of the marriage.  The aliens also then
had assistance in filing materially false immigration paperwork.  The
United States citizens involved in the scheme generally were paid
approximately $500 on the day of the marriage, and an additional $300
per month from the alien for approximately one year. 
           
“U.S. Citizenship is precious, and, for those who come to our country
from abroad, must be earned and not purchased” said U.S. Attorney
Rosenberg.

Arlington County Police Chief Scott stated, “Alert employees in the
Arlington Clerk’s Office noticed a pattern of suspicious marriages. 
They brought it to our attention and we began a fraud investigation. 
Detectives in our Vice Control Section uncovered evidence of a
conspiracy and then worked closely with our federal partners to bring
the suspects involved to justice.”

As alleged in the affidavit, the defendants who facilitated the sham
marriages also coached the sham “couples” about how to answer questions
during interviews conducted by the Department of Homeland Security,
Citizenship and Immigration Services (DHS-CIS). 

For instance, couples were told to memorize the name of their sham
spouse, learn false stories about how they met, and prepare answers to
questions about on which side of the bed they sleep.  In addition, to
support the falsehood that a “couple” lived together, the “couple” was
instructed to obtain false documents showing a shared residence.  Some
couples thus obtained state identification documents, utility bills,
insurance documents, and bank records listing a false, shared address. 
Some couples were told to take photographs together so it would appear
they shared a life.  

“Immigration and benefit fraud is not simply a nuisance crime, it
poses a serious security vulnerability and contributes to a host of
other types of crimes, including identity theft and financial fraud,”
said William Reid Assistant Director of Investigations for ICE.  “The
goal of the task force is to identify, and dismantle the criminal
organizations behind these highly lucrative schemes, and to let the
perpetrators know that U.S. citizenship is not for sale.”

The investigation was conducted by a task force of federal and local
law enforcement agencies including: the U.S. Immigration and Customs
Enforcement (ICE); the Arlington County Police Department; the Fairfax
County Police Department; the Diplomatic Security Service, Department
of State; the Internal Revenue Service; and the Office of the Inspector
General, Department of Commerce. 

The task force received important assistance from several other
agencies including the Fraud Detection and National Security Unit
within DHS-CIS and the Federal Bureau of Investigation.  Assistant
United States Attorneys Beth Gibson and Jeanine Linehan are prosecuting
the case for the United States. 

Defendants are presumed to be innocent until and unless proven guilty. 

— ICE —


U.S.
Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) was established in March 2003
as the largest investigative arm of the Department of Homeland
Security. ICE is comprised of four integrated divisions that form a
21st century law enforcement agency with broad responsibilities for a
number of key homeland security priorities.

 


U.S. turning to DNA to prove family ties

Via The Seattle Times
08/24/2006

After waiting nearly 12 years to help his sister and her family
obtain green cards so they could move to the U.S., Nak Sieng faced one
final hurdle: proving he and his sister really are related.

An exercise that might have been simple for some was a monumental
challenge for the siblings who had lived through Cambodia’s
revolutionary war and, as a result, couldn’t obtain certain documents —
like birth certificates or school or medical records — to prove their
relationship.

Childhood photos the family was able to save from the war years were
too old, authorities told them. And photos from Sieng’s more recent
visits to Cambodia in 2000 were too new.

Then U.S. embassy officials in Thailand asked for a kind of evidence
that attorneys say is becoming increasingly common in immigration
cases: a DNA test.

The test proved unequivocally that the two are brother and sister.

Continue reading

VISA BULLETIN FOR AUGUST 2006

Visa Bulletin


Number 95
Volume VIII
Washington, D.C.


VISA BULLETIN FOR AUGUST 2006



IMMIGRANT NUMBERS FOR AUGUST 2006


A. STATUTORY NUMBERS


1. This bulletin summarizes the availability of immigrant numbers during August. Consular officers are required to report to the Department of State documentarily qualified applicants for numerically limited visas; the Bureau of Citizenship and Immigration Services in the Department of Homeland Security reports applicants for adjustment of status. Allocations were made, to the extent possible under the numerical limitations, for the demand received by July 10th 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. The fiscal year 2006 limit for Family-sponsored preference immigrants determined in accordance with Section 201 of the Immigration and Nationality Act (INA) is 226,000. The fiscal year 2006 limit for Employment-based preference immigrants calculated under INA 201 is 143,949. 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., 25,896 for
FY-2006. The dependent area limit is set at 2%, or 7,399.


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”.


Schedule A Workers: Employment First, Second, and Third preference Schedule A applicants are entitled to up to 50,000 “recaptured” numbers.


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.)













































 Family All
Charge- ability Areas Except Those Listed
CHINA-mainland
born
INDIA MEXICO  PHILIP-PINES
1st  01JAN97 01JAN97 01JAN97 01JUN92 01OCT92
2A 08SEP99 08SEP99 08SEP99 08SEP99 08SEP99
2B 22SEP96 22SEP96 22SEP96 01DEC91 01DEC92
3rd 08SEP98  08SEP98  08SEP98 01JAN81 01DEC85
4th 15JUN95 01JUL94  01JAN95 01JAN93  15JAN84

*NOTE: For August, 2A numbers EXEMPT from per-country limit are available to applicants from all countries with priority dates earlier than 08SEP99. 2A numbers SUBJECT to per-country limit are “Unavailable”.









































































Employ-
ment

Based 
All Charge-ability
Areas
Except
Those
Listed
CHINA INDIA MEXICO PHILIP-PINES
1st C C 01JAN06 C C
2nd C 01MAR05 U C C
3rd 01OCT01 01OCT01 01APR01 22APR01 01OCT01
Schedule A Workers C C C C C
Other
Workers
U U U U U
4th C C C C C
Certain Religious Workers C C C C C
5th C C C C C
Targeted Employment
Areas/
Regional
Centers
C C C C C

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


Employment Third Preference Other Workers Category: Section 203(e) of the NACARA, as amended by Section 1(e) of Pub. L. 105-139, provides that once the Employment Third Preference Other Worker (EW) cut-off date has reached the priority date of the latest EW petition approved prior to November 19, 1997, the 10,000 EW numbers available for a fiscal year are to be reduced by up to 5,000 annually beginning in the following fiscal year. This reduction is to be made for as long as necessary to offset adjustments under the NACARA program. Since the EW cut-off date reached November 19, 1997 during Fiscal Year 2001, the reduction in the EW annual limit to 5,000 began in Fiscal Year 2002.

B. DIVERSITY IMMIGRANT (DV) CATEGORY


Section 203(c) of the Immigration and Nationality Act provides a maximum of up to 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. The Nicaraguan and Central American Relief Act (NACARA) passed by Congress in November 1997 stipulates that beginning with DV-99, and for as long as necessary, up to 5,000 of the 55,000 annually-allocated diversity visas will be made available for use under the NACARA program. This reduction has resulted in the DV-2006 annual limit being reduced to 50,000. DV visas are divided among six geographic regions. No one country can receive more than seven percent of the available diversity visas in any one year.


For August, immigrant numbers in the DV category are available to qualified DV-2006 applicants chargeable to all regions/eligible countries as follows. When an allocation cut-off number is shown, visas are available only for applicants with DV regional lottery rank numbers BELOW the specified allocation cut-off number:































Region All DV Chargeability Areas Except Those
Listed Separately
 
AFRICA 33,900

Except:
Ethiopia 24,100
Nigeria 16,000

ASIA 7,700  
EUROPE 16,000  
NORTH AMERICA (BAHAMAS) 15  
OCEANIA 1,115  
SOUTH AMERICA, and the CARIBBEAN 1,900  

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-2006 program ends as of September 30, 2006. DV visas may not be issued to DV-2006 applicants after that date. Similarly, spouses and children accompanying or following to join DV-2006 principals are only entitled to derivative DV status until September 30, 2006. DV visa availability through the very end of FY-2006
cannot be taken for granted. Numbers could be exhausted prior to September 30.


C. ADVANCE NOTIFICATION OF THE DIVERSITY (DV) IMMIGRANT CATEGORY RANK CUT-OFFS WHICH WILL APPLY IN SEPTEMBER

For September, immigrant numbers in the DV category are available to qualified DV-2006 applicants chargeable to all regions/eligible countries as follows. When an allocation cut-off number is shown, visas are available only for applicants with DV regional lottery rank numbers BELOW the specified allocation cut-off number:































Region All DV Chargeability Areas Except Those
Listed Separately
 
AFRICA Current

Except:
Egypt 24,300
Ethiopia 25,300

ASIA Current  
EUROPE Current  
NORTH AMERICA (BAHAMAS) Current  
OCEANIA Current  
SOUTH AMERICA, and the CARIBBEAN Current  

D. RETROGRESSION OF FAMILY AND EMPLOYMENT CUT-OFF DATES

For August, it has been necessary to retrogress many of the cut-off dates in the Family-sponsored and Employment-based visa categories. This has been done in an effort to hold the issuance levels within the applicable annual numerical limits for the affected categories. Those retrogressions are listed below:


Worldwide: Family 1st (to 01JAN97)
China: Family 4th (to 01JUL94)
India: Employment 2nd has become “Unavailable”; Employment 3rd (to 01APR01)
Mexico: Family 3rd (to 01JAN81) and Family 4th (to 01JAN93)
Philippines: Family 2B (to 01DEC92) and Family 3rd (to 01DEC85)


E. IMMIGRANT VISA AVAILABILITY FOR SEPTEMBER

Immigrant visa number use is approaching the annual limits for the year in many categories, and the supply of numbers remaining for allocation is limited. Therefore, for September there is increased possibility of additional retrogressions of cut-off dates such as those experienced in August. Readers should not assume visa availability until the cut-off dates are announced. Categories which could experience retrogressions are:

Worldwide: Employment 4th
China: Employment 2nd and 3rd
India: Employment 1st
Mexico: Employment 3rd


F. SCHEDULE A VISA AVAILABILITY DURING FY-2007

A total of 50,000 numbers were provided for use in the Schedule A (EX) visa category which was established last May. Visa demand in this category is approaching that limit, and may require the establishment of a cut-off date as early as October. Once all 50,000 numbers have been made available under the current limitation, processing under this category will end.

G. DIVERSITY VISA LOTTERY 2007 (DV-2007) RESULTS


The Kentucky Consular Center in Williamsburg, Kentucky has registered and notified the winners of the DV-2007 diversity lottery. The diversity lottery was conducted under the terms of section 203(c) of the Immigration and Nationality Act and makes available *50,000 permanent resident visas annually to persons from countries with low rates of immigration to the United States. Approximately 82,000 applicants have been registered and notified and may now make an application for an immigrant visa. Since it is likely that some of the first *50,000 persons registered will not pursue their cases to visa issuance, this larger figure should insure that all DV-2007 numbers will be used during fiscal year 2007 (October 1, 2006 until September 30, 2007).


Applicants registered for the DV-2007program were selected at random from over 5.5 million qualified entries received during the 60-day application period that ran from 12:00 AM on October 5, 2005, until midnight, December 4, 2005. The visas have been apportioned among six geographic regions with a maximum of seven percent available to persons born in any single country. During the visa interview, principal applicants must provide proof of a high school education or its equivalent, or show two years of work experience in an occupation that requires at least two years of training or experience within the past five years. Those selected will need to act on their immigrant visa applications quickly. Applicants should follow the instructions in their notification letter and must fully complete the information requested.


Registrants living legally in the United States who wish to apply for adjustment of their status must contact the Bureau of Citizenship and Immigration Services for information on the requirements and procedures. Once the total *50,000 visa numbers have been used, the program for fiscal year 2007 will end. Selected applicants who do not receive visas by September 30, 2007 will derive no further benefit from their DV-2007 registration. Similarly, spouses and children accompanying or following to join DV-2007 principal applicants are only entitled to derivative diversity visa status until September 30, 2007.


Only participants in the DV-2007 program who were selected for further processing have been notified. Those who have not received notification were not selected. They may try for the upcoming DV-2008 lottery if they wish. The dates for the registration period for the DV-2008 lottery program will be widely publicized during August 2006.


* The Nicaraguan and Central American Relief Act (NACARA) passed by Congress in November 1997 stipulated that up to 5,000 of the 55,000 annually-allocated diversity visas be made available for use under the NACARA program. The reduction of the limit of available visas to 50,000 began with DV-2000.

The following is the statistical breakdown by foreign-state chargeability of those registered for the DV-2007 program:















































































AFRICA    
ALGERIA 912 ERITREA 582 NAMIBIA 8
ANGOLA 13 ETHIOPIA 6,871 NIGER 62
BENIN 218 GABON 42 NIGERIA 9,849
BOTSWANA 1 GAMBIA, THE 50 RWANDA 41
BURKINA FASO 95 GHANA 3,088 SAO TOME AND PRINCIPE 2
BURUNDI 16 GUINEA 146 SENEGAL 228
CAMEROON 1,461 GUINEA-BISSAU 5 SEYCHELLES 4
CAPE VERDE 3 KENYA 2,337 SIERRA LEONE 540
CENTRAL AFRICAN REP. 13 LESOTHO 0 SOMALIA 160
CHAD 28 LIBERIA 734 SOUTH AFRICA 287
COMOROS 7 LIBYA 37
SUDAN 569
CONGO 687 MADAGASCAR 21 SWAZILAND 5
CONGO, DEMOCRATIC REPUBLIC OF THE 42 MALAWI 18 TANZANIA 148
COTE D’IVOIRE 308 MALI 76 TOGO 1,592
DJIBOUTI 11 MAURITANIA 17 TUNISIA 122
EGYPT 7,229 MAURITIUS 8 UGANDA 213
EQUATORIAL GUINEA 1 MOROCCO 4,922 ZAMBIA 92
  MOZAMBIQUE 4 ZIMBABWE 73



















































ASIA    
AFGHANISTAN 80 IRAQ 8 NEPAL 1,529
BAHRAIN 1 ISRAEL 126 OMAN 1
BANGLADESH 5,901 JAPAN 333

QATAR 1

BHUTAN 2 JORDAN 63 SAUDI ARABIA 27
BRUNEI 0 NORTH KOREA 6 SINGAPORE 46
BURMA 651 KUWAIT 42 SRI LANKA 383
CAMBODIA 177 LAOS 9 SYRIA 40
HONG KONG SPECIAL ADMIN. REGION 81 LEBANON 86 THAILAND 81
INDONESIA 245 MALAYSIA 76 TAIWAN 398
IRAN 1,361 MALDIVES 0 UNITED ARAB EMIRATES 19
  MONGOLIA 113 YEMEN 43
















































































EUROPE    

ALBANIA 1,988

GERMANY 1,047

NORTHERN IRELAND 42


ANDORRA 0


GREECE 41


NORWAY 21

ARMENIA, 691

GREENLAND 3


PORTUGAL 29 Macau 8


ARUBA 5


HUNGARY 138


ROMANIA 1,255


AUSTRIA 74


ICELAND 13


SAN MARINO 0


AZERBAIJAN 125


IRELAND 160


SERBIA & MONTENEGRO 505


BELARUS 705


ITALY 214


SLOVAKIA 171


BELGIUM 57


KAZAKHSTAN 177


SLOVENIA 7


BOSNIA & HERZEGOVINA 90


KYRGYZSTAN 123


SPAIN 97
Western Sahara 1


BULGARIA 1,674


LATVIA 75


SWEDEN 121


CROATIA 40


LIECHTENSTEIN 0


SWITZERLAND 104


CYPRUS 7


LITHUANIA 298


TAJIKISTAN 84


CZECH REPUBLIC 85


LUXEMBOURG 6


TURKEY 1,418


DENMARK 50


MACEDONIA , FORMER YUGOSLAV REP.
OF 213


TURKMENISTAN 59


ESTONIA 40


MALTA 4


UKRAINE 7,205


FINLAND 33


MOLDOVA 273

TUNISIA 124

FRANCE 380
French Polynesia 10 French Southern and
Antarctic Lands 1 Guadeloupe 3 Martinique 2
New Caledonia 3 Reunion 8


MONACO, 1


UZBEKISTAN 1,536



GEORGIA 323

NETHERLANDS 88 Netherlands Antilles 8

VATICAN CITY 0













NORTH AMERICA    

BAHAMAS , THE 12
































OCEANIA

   

AUSTRALIA 532 Christmas Islands 0 Cocos Islands 1


NAURU 1


SOLOMON
ISLANDS 2

FIJI 514

NEW ZEALAND 205 Cook Islands 3
Niue 0


TONGA 109


KIRIBATI 0


PALAU 3


TUVALU 7


MARSHALL ISLANDS 1


PAPUA NEW GUINEA 6


VANUATU 0


MICRONESIA , FEDERATED STATES OF 4


SAMOA 10


 














































SOUTH AMERICA, CENTRAL AMERICA, AND THE CARIBBEAN

   

ANTIGUA AND BARBUDA 2


DOMINICA 12


PERU 1,274


ARGENTINA 86


ECUADOR 170


SAINT KITTS AND NEVIS 4


BARBADOS 9


GRENADA 6


SAINT LUCIA 4


BELIZE 5


GUATEMALA 43


SAINT VINCENT AND THE GRENADINES 3


BOLIVIA 88


GUYANA 17


SURINAME 3


BRAZIL 488


HONDURAS 28


TRINIDAD AND TOBAGO 85


CHILE 42


NICARAGUA 19


URUGUAY 4


COSTA RICA 18


PANAMA 14


VENEZUELA 226


CUBA 427


PARAGUAY 20

 


Natives of the following countries were not eligible to participate in DV-2007: Canada, China (mainland-born, excluding Hong Kong S.A.R., and Taiwan), Colombia, Dominican Republic, El Salvador, Haiti, India, Jamaica, Mexico, Pakistan, the Philippines, Poland, Russia, South Korea, United Kingdom (except Northern Ireland) and its dependent territories, and Vietnam.

H. DETERMINATION OF THE NUMERICAL LIMITS ON IMMIGRANT REQUIRED UNDER THE TERMS OF THE IMMIGRATION AND NATIONALITY ACT (INA)

The State Department is required to make a determination of the worldwide numerical limitations, as outlined in Section 201(c) and (d) of the INA, on an annual basis. These calculations are based in part on data provided by the Citizenship and Naturalization Service regarding the number of immediate relative adjustments in the preceding year and the number of aliens paroled into the United States under Section 212(d)(5) in the second preceding year. Without this information, it is impossible to make an official determination of the annual limits. To avoid delays in processing while waiting for the CIS data, the Visa Office (VO) bases allocation on the minimum annual limits outlined in Section 201 of the INA.

The Department of State has now determined the family and employment preference numerical limits for FY-2006 in accordance with the terms of Section 201 of the INA. These numerical limitations for FY-2006 are as follows:

    Worldwide Family-Sponsored preference limit: 226,000
    Worldwide Employment-Based preference limit: 143,949

Under INA Section 202(A), the per-country limit is fixed at 7% of the family and employment annual limits. For FY-2006 the per-country limit is 25,896. The dependent area annual limit is 2%, or 7,399.

I. OBTAINING THE MONTHLY VISA BULLETIN


The Department of State’s Bureau of Consular Affairs offers the monthly “Visa Bulletin” on the INTERNET’S WORLDWIDE 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.


To be placed on the Department of State’s E-mail subscription list for the “Visa Bulletin”, please send an E-mail to the following E-mail address:

listserv@calist.state.gov


and in the message body type:
Subscribe Visa-Bulletin First name/Last name
(example: Subscribe Visa-Bulletin Sally Doe)


To be removed from the Department of State’s E-mail subscription list for the “Visa Bulletin”, send an e-mail message to the following E-mail address :

listserv@calist.state.gov


and in the message body type: Signoff Visa-Bulletin


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


Readers may submit questions regarding Visa Bulletin related items by E-mail at the following address:


VISABULLETIN@STATE.GOV


(This address cannot be used to subscribe to the Visa Bulletin.)


Department of State Publication 9514
CA/VO: July 10, 2006.

Backlog holds up legal path into U.S.

Via The Charlotte Observer
07/15/2006

Millions forced to wait for thousands of visas



Members of the Morales family have been waiting almost two decades for green cards.


Family patriarch Miguel Morales Alcala gained legal permanent residence through a 1986 amnesty. He has since tried to get residency for his wife and six of his children.


But the wait became such an ordeal that he ended up paying a coyote $7,000 to smuggle his family into the U.S. from Mexico.


“It’s such a long time,” Morales, 66, said from his Charlotte home. “They told me I could bring my children, but we’re still waiting and wondering when we can get the papers.”


Often lost in the debate over illegal immigration is the massive list of applicants waiting to legally move to the United States.


The wait for a visa can take years, even decades, as several million people worldwide petition for limited spots.


Many immigration lawyers and advocates argue that immigration limits are too restrictive and it should be made easier for people to come here legally.


At the same time, advocates for more restrictive immigration rules acknowledge the process is cumbersome, but say limits benefit the country.


“There are way too many people than we can absorb,” said Ron Woodard, director of NC Listen, an immigration reform group. “Would-be immigrants need to understand that just because you’re a nice person willing to work hard doesn’t mean you can come to America.”

Continue reading

USCIS NOTIFIES PUBLIC OF NEW POLICY CONCERNING FIANCÉ(E) PETITIONS – ANNOUNCED 10,000 RFE’s (REQUESTS FOR EVIDENCE)

06/13/2006 USCIS Press Release

Washington, DC
– <a href="/files/4941-4844/publicnotice061306i_129F.pdf”>U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) announced today that in order to comply with provisions of the International Marriage Brokers Regulation Act of 2005 (IMBRA), it will need to issue “Requests for Evidence” for more than 10,000 Alien Fiancé(e) Petitions (Form I-129F) currently being held at USCIS Service Centers. USCIS will begin immediately to issue RFEs to affected petitioners using an RFE template that has been approved and cleared by the Office of Management and Budget ( OMB )

Visa Bulletin For July 2006

Number 95
Volume VIII
Washington, D.C.

VISA BULLETING FOR JULY 2006

A. STATUTORY NUMBERS

1.
This bulletin summarizes the availability of immigrant numbers during
July. Consular officers are required to report to the Department of
State documentarily qualified applicants for numerically limited visas;
the Bureau of Citizenship and Immigration Services in the Department of
Homeland Security reports applicants for adjustment of status.
Allocations were made, to the extent possible under the numerical
limitations, for the demand received by June 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”. Schedule
A Workers : Employment First, Second, and Third preference Schedule A
applicants are entitled to up to 50,000 “recaptured” numbers.

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.)

Family All Charge- ability Areas Except Those Listed CHINA-mainland born INDIA MEXICO  PHILIPPINES
1st  01JAN00 01JAN00 01JAN00 15MAY92 22SEP91
2A 01SEP99 01SEP99 01SEP99 01SEP99 01SEP99
2B 22AUG96 22AUG96 22AUG96 01DEC91 08JUL96
3rd 22AUG98  22AUG98  22AUG98 15OCT93 01JUL88
4th 01MAY95 01MAY95  01OCT94 15AUG93  15DEC83

Employment-
  Based
All Charge- ability Areas Except Those Listed CHINA-mainland born INDIA MEXICO PHILIPPINES
1st  C C 01JAN06 C C
2nd C 01MAR05 01JAN03  C C
3rd  01OCT01  01OCT01  15APR01 22APR01 01OCT01
Schedule A Workers C C C C C
Other Workers U U U U U
4th  C C C C C
Certain Religious Workers C C C C C
5th C C C C C
Targeted Employment Areas/ Regional Centers C C C C C

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

Employment
Third Preference Other Workers Category: Section 203(e) of the NACARA,
as amended by Section 1(e) of Pub. L. 105 – 139, provides that once the
Employment Third Preference Other Worker (EW) cut-off date has reached
the priority date of the latest EW petition approved prior to November
19, 1997, the 10,000 EW numbers available for a fiscal year are to be
reduced by up to 5,000 annually beginning in the following fiscal year.
This reduction is to be made for as long as necessary to offset
adjustments under the NACARA program. Since the EW cut-off date reached
November 19, 1997 during Fiscal Year 2001, the reduction in the EW
annual limit to 5,000 began in Fiscal Year 2002.

B. DIVERSITY IMMIGRANT (DV) CATEGORY

Section
203(c) of the Immigration and Nationality Act provides a maximum of up
to 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. The Nicaraguan and
Central American Relief Act (NACARA) passed by Congress in November
1997 stipulates that beginning with DV-99, and for as long as
necessary, up to 5,000 of the 55,000 annually-allocated diversity visas
will be made available for use under the NACARA program. This reduction has resulted in the DV-2006 annual limit being reduced to 50,000.
DV visas are divided among six geographic regions. No one country can
receive more than seven percent of the available diversity visas in any
one year.

For
July, immigrant numbers in the DV category are available to qualified
DV-2006 applicants chargeable to all regions/eligible countries as
follows. When an allocation cut-off number is shown, visas are
available only for applicants with DV regional lottery rank numbers
BELOW the specified allocation cut-off number:

Region All DV Chargeability Areas Except Those Listed Separately  
AFRICA  AF   27,850 Except Ethiopia: 22,800
Nigeria: 14,675
ASIA   AS    7,225  
EUROPE EU   15,250    
NORTH AMERICA (BAHAMAS)   NA       13   
OCEANIA OC      930  
SOUTH AMERICA, and the CARIBBEAN SA    1,610  

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-2006 program ends as of September 30, 2006. DV visas may not be
issued to DV-2006 applicants after that date. Similarly, spouses and
children accompanying or following to join DV-2006 principals are only
entitled to derivative DV status until September 30, 2006. DV visa
availability through the very end of FY-2006 cannot be taken for
granted. Numbers could be exhausted prior to September 30.

ITEM C is being worked on and will be posted on this site on Thursday.

D. RETROGRESSION OF FAMILY F2A CUT-OFF DATE FOR JUNE

For July, it has been necessary to retrogress the F1 and F2A cut-off dates. This has been done in an effort to hold the issuance
levels within the applicable annual numerical limits for the affected categories.

F. IMMIGRANT VISA AVAILABILITY DURING THE REMAINDER OF FY-2006

Readers
are reminded that during the summer months, with immigrant visa number
use approaching the annual limits for the year, the supply of numbers
remaining for use is limited. Thus, cut-off date advances could slow or
stop, and monthly allocations decrease. Additional retrogression of
cut-off dates such as those experienced for July are possible. Readers
should not assume visa availability until the cut-off dates are
announced.

G. OBTAINING THE MONTHLY VISA BULLETIN

The Department of State’s Bureau of Consular Affairs offers the monthly “Visa Bulletin” on the INTERNET’S WORLDWIDE 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.

To
be placed on the Department of State’s E-mail subscription list for the
“Visa Bulletin”, please send an E-mail to the following E-mail address:

listserv@calist.state.gov

and in the message body type:
Subscribe Visa-Bulletin First name/Last name
(example: Subscribe Visa-Bulletin Sally Doe)

To be removed from the Department of State’s E-mail subscription list for the “Visa Bulletin”, send an
e-mail message to the following E-mail address:

listserv@calist.state.gov

and in the message body type: Signoff Visa-Bulletin

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

Readers may submit questions regarding Visa Bulletin related items by
E-mail at the following address:

VISABULLETIN@STATE.GOV

(This address cannot be used to subscribe to the Visa Bulletin.)

Department of State Publication 9514

CA/VO:June 9, 2006

Gay couple may be forced apart by US immigration laws

via pinknews.uk.co

A
Swansea woman and her American partner may have to give up their home
and life in the States, as US immigration laws fail to take gay
partnerships into account.

Belinda
Ryan, a helicopter pilot, has been living with her partner Wendy Daw,
an acupuncturist, in San Francisco. But she will be forced to return to
the UK unless there is a change in immigration laws for gay couples.

Currently
US law defines marriage as a union between a man and a woman, and
excludes same-sex couples from having the same rights. Though the
debate is raging in Washington, the couple fear that any change to the
law will come to late if it comes at all.

Continue reading

Legal immigrants face citizenship hurdles

Via SunHerald.com
05/12/2006

Kshitij
Bedi recently marked his fourth wedding anniversary, but it wasn’t much
of a celebration, just a long-distance phone conversation.

The Long Island resident has barely seen his wife, Shweta, in the
past four years. She is in India, waiting and waiting – and waiting –
for the visa that would allow her to join her husband, a legal
permanent resident, in the United States.

Bedi applied for the visa in April 2002, less than three weeks after
the couple’s wedding. He tries to visit India as much as possible, but
essentially, “I’ve been a bachelor since then.”

“There’s nothing we can do,” he said. “We’re so helpless.”

In all the recent talk about immigration reform, most of the focus
has been on the millions of people in the United States illegally. But
part of the problem, legal experts and immigrant advocates say, is a
complicated legal immigration system in which the demand for visas far
outstrips the supply.

“People aren’t choosing to walk through the desert; they’re doing
that because the front door is closed,” said Benjamin Johnson, director
of the Immigration Policy Center at the American Immigration Law
Foundation. “The only way to get in is the back door.”

Some foreigners are left waiting for a visa for more than a decade.
And those are just the ones who fit into one of the complex categories
of people eligible to apply for a visa. The ones who don’t? Forget it,
experts say.

“For the vast majority of people who would like to move to the
United States, there is no line to get on,” said Julie Dinerstein,
deputy director of immigration advocacy for the New York Immigration
Coalition.

In general, there are four ways foreigners can get permission to
move to the United States: They can be sponsored by an American citizen
relative, or in some cases, a legal resident relative; they can be
sponsored by an employer; they can claim refugee or asylum status; or
they can win a visa lottery.

But each one of the categories has limitations. For American
citizens, their spouses, parents, and unmarried children under 18 can
get immediate visas, with no wait. But any married children or adult
siblings have to get in line, and other relations, such as cousins,
cannot be sponsored. Legal permanent residents, like Bedi, can sponsor
only spouses or unmarried children, not other relatives.

There are about 226,000 family-preference visas available in a year
for the entire world, divided equally among countries. (Immediate
family members of American citizens are not counted in this category.)
For companies looking to sponsor an employee, there are about 140,000
visas.

To win refugee status, foreigners must prove they face persecution
in their homeland. As for the visa lottery, it is only for residents of
countries that aren’t already sending large numbers of people here.
About 50,000 diversity visas are given out each year.

But those totals don’t even come near to accommodating the millions of people who want to come here.

According to the latest government bulletin:

_ The waiting list for unmarried adult children of legal permanent
residents is nearly 10 years long. For those coming from Mexico, it is
almost 15 years.

_ For adult siblings of American citizens, the wait is more than 10
years; for those coming from the Philippines, almost 23 years.

The numbers of visas given out is set by Congress; the last
adjustment was more than a decade ago. The basic framework, that all
countries get the same number of visas, was put into place in 1965.

Some say it is time to change the law.

“Many people feel if we would liberalize our legal immigration
rules, that that in itself would reduce the scale of illegal
immigration,” said Stephen Legomsky, professor of international law at
Washington University in St. Louis.

Dinerstein said it is clear that the American economy can absorb
more people than are coming legally, as evidenced by the number of
illegal immigrants seeking jobs.

And no one feels the pain more than those who are separated from their families.

People like Dorota Szewczyk, who left her toddler daughter behind in
Poland to join her husband here. That marriage fell apart, and now she
is waiting for her legal residency status – a process that could take
years. She cannot leave the country, meaning the daughter could be well
into her teens before seeing her mother again.

Or Sam Assatov, a software engineer from Uzbekistan who works in New
York City. He is waiting to be reunited with his wife and 7-month-old
son, who are still back in their homeland.

“You basically end up spending your life in the United States
looking forward to going back,” he said. “You count the days until you
live together and the days you can’t live together, you hope they end.”