April 2021 Visa Bulletin: EB-1 India & China Join ROW To Become Current

The Department of Homeland Security released the April 2021’s visa bulletin.  EB-1 India and China have finally caught up to the rest of the world and become current. This means every green card applicant who has their priority date can work on the next steps in getting it.

While everyone’s attention was focused on President Biden successfully rescinding or reversing many of the stringent policies initiated by the previous administration, the monthly visa bulletin has brought in further good news with strong advancements in all employment based categories. EB-1, EB-2 and EB-3 have all moved forward by either a minimum of five weeks or becoming current.

EB-1 India and China becoming current could mean a slight chance of a spillover in the coming months. Can other EB categories be hopeful to benefit from this? Wait and watch…

Below is a range of advancements in the employment based categories for both India and China:

Employment-Based CategoriesIndiaIndiaChinaChina
  Mar 2021 April 2021Mar 2021 April 2021
EB-1 Aug 1, 2020 Final Action Dates – CurrentAug 1, 2020 Final Action Dates – Current
EB-2Jan 15, 2010 May 1, 2010July 15, 2016 Sept 1, 2016
EB-3July 1, 2010Sept 1, 2010 Feb 8, 2018March 15, 2018

Family-based Categories

There is some backlog in the family-based categories. The date ranges below will reflect current Final Action dates wherein USCIS has received your Form I-130 petitions.

Family-Based CategoryIndiaChina
1-AOct 8, 2014Oct 8, 2014
2BAug 8, 2015Aug 8, 2015
3rdAug 8, 2008Aug 8, 2008
4thApr 8, 2005Nov 1, 2006

Adjustment Of Status Filings

This year, USCIS has been honoring the Final Action dates for adjustment of status filings. This was unlike 2020 where USCIS had opted for the Dates for Filing chart to honor the adjustment of status petitions.

This time however, USCIS is yet to announce if it will be using the final action dates or not. We have the final action dates outlined above. The April Dates for Filing isn’t much different from March, though the EB-2 and EB-3 China dates have advanced slightly.

To be eligible to file an employment-based adjustment of status next month, the visa holder should have a priority date earlier than the date listed above. Cut-off dates for India and China, the majority countries with employment based visas is listed above.

Consular Processing Delays

When the Trump administration put a travel ban on new green card holders from entering the U.S., there was a tremendous spillover of unused green cards into the employment based categories. Now that the Biden administration has reversed that ban, Consular processing will resume and overall processing will increase demand. The consulates abroad are juggling between finishing up their backlogs created over the pandemic shutdown and the new petitions coming in since the ban was lifted. This bound to create an overall delay in consular processing.

The one plus point, as mentioned above is that since EB-1 is current, we can expect some spillover. It’s worth watching how this pans out since the majority countries India and China EB-1 have become current, freeing up some green cards.

Is May 2021 going to show similar results in its visa bulletin? Stay tuned to this space to know the cut-off dates as soon as the State Department releases it visa bulletin for May 2021.