Waiting List for Legal Immigrant Visas Keeps Growing

Thứ Năm, 14 Tháng Năm 201512:52(Xem: 18039)
Waiting List for Legal Immigrant Visas Keeps Growing
More than 4.4 million people are on the legal immigrant visa waiting list according to the State Department.  Compared to last year, that is an increase of 100,085 more people. Ninety-eight percent of those waiting have been sponsored by a family member in the United States.

 

The people on this waiting list have shown that they have a qualifying family relationship.   The list does not include those who are already in the United States waiting to adjust from a legal temporary status to a green card. The waiting lists are needed because of annual limits on the number of immigrants that can be admitted in certain family and employment categories, and because of limits on the number who can come from each country.

Vietnam is in the top four, following Mexico, the Philippines and India.  There are 259,030 people in Vietnam waiting to be interviewed for their immigrant visas.

The waiting list should not be confused with the processing backlogs, which represent the length of time it takes for USCIS to adjudicate each application or petition. The waiting lists occur because the demand for green cards exceeds the limits enacted by Congress to regulate the level of immigration.  The processing delays occur because USCIS has not effectively managed the huge volume of applications from people seeking immigration benefits.  For example, it can take  more than 16 months to process the application for the wife and children of U.S. citizens because USCIS has diverted staff to processing DACA and EAD applications.

The law allows for an unlimited number of immigrants who are the spouse, child, or parent of an adult U.S. citizen, so there is no waiting list in that category, although there is a processing time of five months for the initial petition plus additional months for the application itself to be reviewed by NVC.

The waiting times in the family categories (F1,F2,F3,F4) range from 19 months to more than 10 years for Vietnamese applicants.     

More than half of the worldwide waiting list is comprised of about 2.5 million people who are in the F4 category, sponsored by a sibling who is a U.S. citizen. These applicants must wait at least 13 years for their visa interview.   The largest number (30 percent) are citizens of Mexico, and the wait for them is at least 18 years.

 

Worldwide, another 806,000 applicants are adult married sons and daughters of U.S. citizens. The wait for most applicants in this category is just over 11 years. However, F3 applicants from Mexico and the Philippines have a wait of more than 20 years.

In every Family category (F1,F2,F3,F4), the size of the waiting list grew over the last year, with the list growing most in the category for unmarried adult sons and daughters of U.S. citizens. The existence of this massive waiting list of eligible applicants for family immigrant visas and green cards raises important questions about immigration reform.

Eligible immigrants being sponsored by family members are waiting many years for their opportunity to be admitted to the US legally.   When Mr. Obama grants benefits such as work permits, DACA and DAPA, this looks very unfair to those who are waiting in line for their immigrant visas.  It seems to them that illegal aliens are getting preferential treatment over those applying through the legal process established by Congress.

For example, the new Central American Minors program allows illegal aliens from El Salvador and two other countries to bring in family members without fees and regardless of prior deportations or felony convictions.  Meanwhile, 77,000 legal applicants from El Salvador have to pay the regular application fees, meet higher eligibility standards, and keep waiting for their turn.

Also, the waiting list shows that 75% of pending applicants are in the F3 and F4 categories with waiting times that are measured in decades.  Congress should decide if it makes any sense to have these categories.   The F3’s and F4’s cannot be admitted to the US within a reasonable time, and they often have children who are not eligible to accompany the parents.    This seems more like a cruel joke than a responsible immigration policy.

----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Now, let’s look at the numbers for Vietnamese immigration.  In Fiscal Year 2014, the Consulate in Saigon issued a total of 24,500 immigrant visas.   Immediate Relatives of US citizens received 6,240 visas and 18,000 immigrant visas were issued in the Preference categories:  1,640 F-1 Visas,  

                       3,400 F2A visas,  

                       381    F2B visas,  

                       5,452 F3’s  and  

                       7,149 F4’s.

----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

 Q.1.  Is Congress still considering immigration reform that would eliminate F3 and F4 visas?

 A.1.  No, the F3’s and F4’s will be safe for some time to come.   Congress is now focusing all their attention on how to control our borders and on what can be done about the millions of illegal immigrants already in the US.

----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Q.2. Isn’t there any way to reduce the wait times for F3 and F4 cases?

 A.2. There is an easy way to speed up processing of F3’s and F4’s:  just issue one visa per family instead of a separate visa for each family member.  This would free up tens of thousands of visas worldwide and drastically reduce wait times.

------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Q.3.  What about the Visa Lottery?  Any chance that Vietnam could be included in that in future?

 A.3.  The Visa Lottery is only for countries with a small number of immigrants each year.  Vietnam is not eligible because so many immigrant visas are issued each year to Vietnamese applicants.

ROBERT  MULLINS  INTERNATIONAL  www.rmiodp.com   www.facebook.com/rmiodp
Immigration Support Services - Tham Van Di Tru      

9070 Bolsa Ave.,  Westminster CA  92683                 (714) 890-9933
779 Story Road, Ste. 70, San Jose, CA 95122           (408) 294-3888
6930 65th St. Ste. #105, Sacramento CA 95823         (916) 393-3388
Rang Mi - 47 Phung Khac Khoan, Q1, HCMC            (848) 3914-7638
Thứ Tư, 02 Tháng Ba 2016(Xem: 4164)
Vietnamese women who come to the US to join their US citizen/resident husbands face a number of challenges. They must learn to get by without the comfort and support of their family in Vietnam, as well as without Vietnamese society as they knew it in Vietnam.
Thứ Tư, 24 Tháng Hai 2016(Xem: 4793)
The Department of State has just released their annual report of the Immigrant Visa Waiting lists for applicants who are subject to a quota. These quota categories are called Preference visas.
Thứ Ba, 16 Tháng Hai 2016(Xem: 4698)
What is an L1 visa? The L-1 visa is a non-immigrant visa.
Thứ Ba, 09 Tháng Hai 2016(Xem: 4286)
I cannot speak English well. Can I take my interview in Vietnamese?
Thứ Hai, 01 Tháng Hai 2016(Xem: 3192)
Since most EB5 visas are given to people who invest in Regional Centers, we will look at some of the frequently asked questions about these centers.
Thứ Tư, 27 Tháng Giêng 2016(Xem: 4311)
Fiancee Visas are actually non-immigrant visas because a Green Card is not issued until after the marriage in the US and application for Adjustment of Status in the US.
Thứ Tư, 06 Tháng Giêng 2016(Xem: 10575)
K visas: Vietnam is among the top five countries for K visas. K-1 visas are issued to a US citizen’s fiancée so that she can come to the US to be married. There are also K-3 visas.
Thứ Sáu, 01 Tháng Giêng 2016(Xem: 3163)
On December 18, Congress passed the 2016 Federal Omnibus. Overall, there were not many surprises in the bill, except for the EB5 Investors program.
Thứ Hai, 21 Tháng Mười Hai 2015(Xem: 2649)
Two hundred and twenty five years ago, in 1790, the US Congress passed its first naturalization law, limiting citizenship to free whites of “good moral character” who had lived in the U.S. for at least two years.
Thứ Tư, 16 Tháng Mười Hai 2015(Xem: 3393)
The current EB5 Immigrant Investor Program was extended until today, 16 December and new legislation is expected by the end of this week. It is expected that the EB5 program will be extended until September 2019.