October 2018 Visa Bulletin Released

The Department of State (DOS) has released its October 2018 Visa Bulletin.  October 1 marks the start of the new fiscal year so all the visa categories benefit from new visa numbers.  As a result, all categories will experience significant advancements, some as many as four to six years.

Specifically, the Employment-Based (“EB”)-1 category for all nationals (except for China and India) will move forward ten months to April 1, 2017, while EB-1 for nationals of China and India advances by over four years to June 1, 2016.  

The EB-2 category for all nationals (except China and India) will become current again while EB-2 for Chinese and Indian nationals will advance by over two years.  

The EB-3 category for all nationals (except for China, India, and the Philippines) also will become current. EB-3 for Chinese and Philippine nationals advances by seven months while EB-3 for Indian nationals jumps forward by six years to January 1, 2009.

Here’s a chart for easier reference:

EB-1-Worldwide:            April 1, 2017, except:

                                           Ten-month advancement from last month’s VB

  China:       June 1, 2016

Four-year and five-month advancement from last month’s VB

                        India:         June 1, 2016

                                           Four-year and five-month advancement from last month’s VB


EB-2-Worldwide:            Current, except:   

China:            April 1, 2015               

                        Two-year and three-month advancement from last month’s VB

India:              March 26, 2009

                        Two-year and two-month advancement from last month’s VB


EB-3-Worldwide:              Current, except:

                        China:          June 1, 2015

                                              Seven-month advancement from last month’s VB

                        India:            January 1, 2009

                                              Six-year advancement  from last month’s VB

Philippines:  June 1, 2017

Seven-month advancement from last month’s VB


If USCIS determines that there are more immigrant visas available for a fiscal year than there are known applicants for such visas, then USCIS will state on www.uscis.gov/visabulletininfo that you may use the Dates for Filing Visa Applications chart in the Department of State Visa Bulletin, which usually has dates earlier than the Final Action Dates noted above. Otherwise, USCIS will indicate on its web site that you must use the Application Final Action Dates chart (which is above) to determine when you may file your adjustment of status application in the United States.  For October 2018, USCIS has announced that the Dates of Filing chart may be used for employment-based filings.  These dates are below:

EB-1-Worldwide:                June 1, 2018, except:

                        China:           October 1, 2017

                        India:             October 1, 2017


EB-2-Worldwide:               Current, except:   

China:             June 15, 2015             

India:             May 22, 2009


EB-3-Worldwide:                Current, except:

                        China:            August 8, 2015

                        India:              October 1, 2009

Philippines:  July 1, 2017

If the priority date for your employment-based category is before the date listed above and you are in the United States, you may file your application to adjust status along with the applications for employment authorization and travel permission (assuming you have no bars to admissibility) with USCIS in October.

This alert is for informational purposes.  If you would like to discuss these developments further, please do not hesitate to contact us.