Long Processing Times for Fiance Visa Petitions

October 21st, 2011

The fiance visa petition processing should be relatively quick. In the golden days (if there is such a thing in the world of immigration law), I could get a fiance visa petition approval within several months. Now it has slowed down to approximately six months, and this is just for the first stage when USCIS must adjudicate the petition. Then there’s no saying how long the National Visa Center could take to start the visa processing and send the case to the US Consulate. For most cases it can be be three to six months on average depending on the luck the beneficiary has with his or her background check. If there is a problem with the background check, and your client happens to share the same name as some unsavory character whom the US government has found to be a threat to our nation’s security, then all bets are off and the US Department of State becomes like “big brother.” There is absolutely no way to expedite the matter or get more definitive information on the delay.

So what is the silver lining to all this? Maybe it’s a true test of the relationship – for anyone who could maintain a long distance relationship with no guarantee of success must be pretty committed. Although the real challenge is maintaining a long relationship with little space from one’s partner!

USCIS Updates Fiscal Year 2012 H-1B Cap as of October 14, 2011

October 21st, 2011

As of October 14, 2011, USCIS has received approximately 43,300 H-1B petitions subject to the FY 2012 bachelor’s degree cap, of which there are 65,000 visas each fiscal year. Also, USCIS has received 19,600 H-1B petitions subject to the FY 2012 US master’s degree cap, of which there are 20,000 visas each fiscal year. If the master’s cap is reached, USCIS has stated that any petitions filed on behalf of aliens with an advanced US degree will be counted toward the general 65,000 H-1B cap. These numbers are still moving very slowly and it appears that the cap may not be reached until the end of this year or even later, since the numbers moved by only 1,000 for the bachelor’s cap in one week.

Once these numbers are exhausted, then new petitions subject to the cap can be filed as early as April 1, 2012, requesting a start date of October 1, 2012.