November 2023 Visa Bulletin: Not Much Change

The Visa Bulletin is like a monthly newsletter for immigrant visas. It tells us whether family and employment-based categories are current or backlogged. The Department of State (DOS) and USCIS team up to publish it every month. It's has two charts: the Final Action Chart (shows priority dates that are current and available) and the Dates for Filing Chart (shows priority dates expected to become current during the fiscal year).

For October and November 2023, USCIS said to use the Dates for Filing Chart to figure out if family and employment-based adjustment of status applications can be filed. The November 2023 Visa Bulletin is mostly a copy-paste of the October 2023 Visa Bulletin, with a few exceptions we'll get into.

II. Family-Based Case dates are stagnate; No More F2A Concurrent Filing

From September to November 2023, the family-based categories haven't budged, except for F2A (spouses and children of permanent residents). Until recently, F2A was current on the Dates for Filing Chart, but that's changed in FY2023. Now, the F2A category (for most countries) has a cutoff date of September 1, 2023, the same as last month, which means there can be no concurrent filing of the I-130 and I-485 applications in this category. The Final Action Date in this date is even farther behind at February 8, 2019.

III. Employment-Based Applications: Still Retrogressed

The October and November 2023 Visa Bulletins continued the retrogression that started with the May 2023 bulletin. Despite the belief that both categories would recover and become current in October, 2023, the EB-2 and EB-3 worldwide had and continue to have cutoff dates since the start of the new fiscal year on October 1, 2023, which is a first. The EB-3 worldwide Final Action Date moved a bit from May 2021 to December 1, 2021, but EB-2 worldwide is still stuck in July 2022. In the November 2023 Visa Bulletin, EB-2 worldwide Final Action Date moved forward by a week, from July 8, 2022, to July 15, 2022. The EB-2 worldwide Dates for Filing however stayed at January 1, 2023. EB-1 worldwide Final Action Date is current, but China and India are still experiencing retrogression.

Remember, this is just a high-level overview. For the full details, you'll want to check out the actual Visa Bulletins or consult with a legal professional.

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