The U.S. State Department has just posted the Visa Bulletin for October 2019. As was expected, as the new fiscal year begins in October, and the entire new supply of immigrant visas is issued, the cutoff dates in the October 2019 Visa Bulletin have advanced for many categories that were retrogressed over the previous few months.
For example, the second and third preference employment-based categories for “all other” nationalities have returned to “current,” meaning that individuals in these categories may immediately file I-485 applications. Although the first preference category for “all other” nationalities remains backlogged, USCIS has indicated that the employment-based categories may rely on the “filing date chart” in establishing eligibility to file I-485 Applications for Adjustment of Status. Since the filing date chart lists a cutoff date of 1 Jul 2019, many with pending and approved I-140 petitions in the first preference employment category will be allowed to file I-485 applications in October.
The October 2019 visa bulletin filing chart significantly advances the cutoff dates for filing I-485 applications for employment-based first preference Chinese and Indian chargeable applicants.
The cutoff date difference between the filing date chart and the final action chart is significant for a number of categories, and as a result, many I-485 applications filed in October may be pending for lengthy periods of time. Nevertheless, the opportunity to file an I-485 application has a significant benefit, including the ability to file for an employment authorization document, and this is an opportunity that may not occur again for some time. In November, USCIS may revert to the final action chart, limiting I-485 filing only to those whose priority dates are current under the more restricted chart.
Source: The National Law Review