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Spring Forward, but Fall Behind: The September 2015 Visa Bulletin brings unwelcome news for Indian and Chinese “green card” applicants in the employment-based second preference category.

Today, the Department of State (DOS) released the last visa bulletin for the 2015 fiscal year. Notably, major retrogressions are seen in the employment-based second preference category (EB-2) for both India and China. The EB-2 India category has retrogressed from October 1, 2008 to January 1, 2006. The EB-2 China category has retrogressed almost eight years, from December 15, 2013 to January 1, 2006.

The employment-based third preference category (EB-3) for Mexico and Worldwide advances by one month. EB-3 China advances by six months and EB-3 India also saw an almost six- month advancement as well.

September is the last month of the government’s fiscal year and DOS has evaluated how many visa numbers are left to be issued. After performing this calculation, DOS adjusts the cutoff dates accordingly. Over the past six months, we have seen significant forward movement in the EB-2 category for India and China, and as such more petitions were filed and numbers were used. The retrogression stops this forward momentum for September, however once the new fiscal year begins October 1st more visa numbers should become available.

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