On September 24, 2020, the Department of State released its Visa Bulletin for the month of October 2020. This is great news for many petitioners who are waiting for their priority dates to be current to proceed with their applications for green cards.
“Table B – Dates for Filing” Available for October 2020 Visa Bulletin
The October 2020 Visa Bulletin presents several opportunities for petitioners of employment-based preference categories. For example, for the month of October, USCIS allows all applicants filing under employment-based preference categories to use the “Table B – Dates for Filing” Chart in the Visa Bulletin to file their Adjustment of Status applications–even if their petitions are not yet current under “Table A – Final Action Dates” Chart.
Table B – Dates For Filing Of Employment-Based Visa Applications – Visa Bulletin October 2020
This window of opportunity for filing Adjustment of Status applications provides several benefits. One is that once the applications are properly filed, the applicants will be authorized to stay in the States without the pressure of maintaining their current underlying non-immigrant status (though we always recommend doing so where possible). This serves as a great back up option for non-immigrant visa holders such as temporary workers under several categories, F-1 students, etc. in case something happens to their underlying status during the difficult time of the pandemic. Additionally, those with pending Adjustment of Status applications are able to apply for work and travel authorization until a final decision is made on the application.
Another opportunity presented in October 2020 Visa Bulletin is that the significant progress of the cut-off date in the EB-3 category offers an option for many employment-based applicants to downgrade their status from EB-2 to EB-3, which might help in expediting the permanent resident process. Please read our blog article that discusses the downgrade of EB-2 green card category to EB-3 green card category.
However: Table B & CSPA
It is worth noting that the availability to use Table B does not eliminate potential age-out issues of petitioners who have children that are nearing 21 years of age. This is because according to the Child Status Protection Act (“CSPA”), age is determined based on the “Table A – Final Action Dates” Chart, instead of based on Table B. A handy formula to calculate CSPA age is as follows:
CSPA Age = Applicant’s Actual Age at the Time of Visa Availability* – Petition’s Pending Time
*The Time of Visa Ability is determined based on Table A – Final Action Dates Chart
Assuming the underlying petition has been approved, this formula allows Applicants and their attorneys to estimate when the case needs to be current under Table A in order for the child to qualify as an accompanying family member. Applicants and their attorneys should then continuously monitor the monthly Visa Bulletins to evaluate the Child’s eligibility.
Contact our office today to schedule a consult with one of our immigration attorneys.