IMMIGRANT NUMBERS FOR JANUARY 2005
A. STATUTORY NUMBERS
1. This bulletin summarizes the availability of immigrant numbers during
January. Consular officers are required to report to the Department of State
documentarily qualified applicants for numerically limited visas; the Bureau
of Citizenship and Immigration Services in the Department of Homeland
Security reports applicants for adjustment of status. Allocations were made,
to the extent possible under the numerical limitations, for the demand
received by December 8th in the chronological order of the reported priority
dates. If the demand could not be satisfied within the statutory or
regulatory limits, the category or foreign state in which demand was
excessive was deemed oversubscribed. The cut-off date for an oversubscribed
category is the priority date of the first applicant who could not be
reached within the numerical limits. Only applicants who have a priority
date earlier than the cut-off date may be allotted a number. Immediately
that it becomes necessary during the monthly allocation process to
retrogress a cut-off date, supplemental requests for numbers will be honored
only if the priority date falls within the new cut-off date.
2. Section 201 of the
Immigration and Nationality Act (INA) sets an annual minimum
family-sponsored preference limit of 226,000. The worldwide level for annual
employment-based preference immigrants is at least 140,000. Section 202
prescribes that the per-country limit for preference immigrants is set at 7%
of the total annual family-sponsored and employment-based preference limits,
i.e., 25,620. The dependent area limit is set at 2%, or 7,320
Section 203 of the INA prescribes preference classes for allotment of
immigrant visas as follows:
First: Unmarried Sons and Daughters of Citizens: 23,400 plus any numbers
not required for fourth preference.
Second: Spouses and Children, and Unmarried Sons and Daughters of
Residents: 114,200, plus the number (if any) by which the worldwide
family preference level exceeds 226,000, and any unused first preference
A. Spouses and Children: 77% of the overall second preference limitation,
of which 75% are exempt from the per-country limit;
B. Unmarried Sons and Daughters (21 years of age or older): 23% of the
overall second preference limitation.
Third: Married Sons and Daughters of Citizens: 23,400, plus any numbers
not required by first and second preferences.
Fourth: Brothers and Sisters of Adult Citizens: 65,000, plus any numbers
not required by first three preferences.
First: Priority Workers: 28.6% of the worldwide employment-based
preference level, plus any numbers not required for fourth and fifth
Second: Members of the Professions Holding Advanced Degrees or Persons of
Exceptional Ability: 28.6% of the worldwide employment-based preference
level, plus any numbers not required by first preference.
Third: Skilled Workers, Professionals, and Other Workers: 28.6% of the
worldwide level, plus any numbers not required by first and second
preferences, not more than 10,000 of which to "Other Workers".
Fourth: Certain Special Immigrants: 7.1% of the worldwide level.
Fifth: Employment Creation: 7.1% of the worldwide level, not less than
3,000 of which reserved for investors in a targeted rural or
high-unemployment area, and 3,000 set aside for investors in regional
centers by Sec. 610 of P.L. 102-395.
Section 203(e) provides that family-sponsored and employment-based
preference visas be issued to eligible immigrants in the order in which a
petition in behalf of each has been filed.
Section 203(d) provides that spouses and children of preference
immigrants are entitled to the same status, and the same order of
consideration, if accompanying or following to join the principal. The visa
prorating provisions of Section 202(e) apply to allocations for a foreign
state or dependent area when visa demand exceeds the per-country limit.
These provisions apply at present to the following oversubscribed
chargeability areas: CHINA-mainland born, INDIA, MEXICO, and PHILIPPINES.
5. On the chart below, the listing of a date for any class indicates that
the class is oversubscribed (see paragraph 1); "C" means current, i.e.,
numbers are available for all qualified applicants; and "U" means
unavailable, i.e., no numbers are available. (NOTE: Numbers are available
only for applicants whose priority date is earlier than the cut-off date