The October Visa Bulletin published this week shows that the family based 2nd preference category "F2A" (children under 21 and spouses of lawful permanent residents) will no longer be current for October 2013.
For an explanation of how the family based preference system works, please visit our post from July 10, 2013.
The fact that F2A will no longer be current in October means that if you are present in the United States AND eligible to adjust your status to lawful permanent resident (meaning either your last entry into the United States was a lawful entry or you had a visa petition on file for you on or before April 30, 2001 ("245(i)"), you should file immediately during the month of September while the category is still current.
As illustrated in a reporduction of the October 2013 visa bulletin below, from October 1, 2013 through at least October 31, 2013, Mexican nationals in category "F2A" may immediately apply for lawful permanent residence only if their priority date is September 1, 2013 or earlier. Other foreign nationals in category "F2A" may immediately apply for lawful permanent residence only if their priority date is September 8, 2013 or earlier.
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Therefore, if you are the spouse or child under 21 of a permanent resident and are eligible to adjust status but have not yet filed, you should submit your application immediately during the month of September 2013 in order to take advantage of the current priority date for F2A.
Even though the F2A category will no longer be current in October, by filing now you will be eligible to receive work authorization while your application remains pending. This will allow you to work legally in the United States until your priority date becomes current again and your application for adjustment of status is adjudicated.
As a final note, please remember that even if you are eligible to apply for an immigration benefit, it is not always advisable to do so, depending on the details of your personal and immigration history. It is always a good idea to speak to a reputable immigration attorney before filing to make sure it is the best option for you.
**This blog is written for the purpose of providing general information only, and is not legal advice. If you have specific questions about your case, we suggest you call our office to set up a consultation to speak to an attorney.
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