August 2023 Visa Bulletin – Latest Updates

August 2023 Visa Bulletin – Latest Updates

The U.S. Department of State released its Visa Bulletin for August 2023. That’s a big deal if you’re waiting for your priority date to be current so that your green card application can move forward.

If you don’t know what a “visa bulletin” or a “priority date” is, we’ve got you covered. Start by checking out the Boundless guide on How to Read the Visa Bulletin.

If you’re already familiar with those terms, scroll down to our summary of key developments or to the filing category that’s most relevant to you:

Family-based categories

Employment-based categories


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Every month, USCIS announces whether applicants already living in the United States should file their “adjustment of status” applications based on the “Final Action Dates” or the “Dates for Filing.”

For August, family-based applicants must use the “Dates for Filing” (available on the State Department’s website), while employment-based applicants must use the “Final Action Dates” (also available on the State Department’s website).

IMPORTANT UPDATE July 2023: According to the August Visa Bulletin, the final adjudication dates for F2A applications (spouses and unmarried children under age 21 of U.S. green card holders) have continued to lengthen, meaning that even though a green card holder sponsor can file their application for a spouse or child to immigrate to the U.S., these applications won’t be processed for several years. Prior to August, a green card holder sponsor who filed in 2020 would just now be able to receive a decision on their case, but starting in August this same sponsor would have had to file in 2017 to receive a decision this month. This means that the total time many green card holder sponsors may wait to reunite with their families could exceed seven years or more.

Family-Based Green Card Backlogs

F-1: UNMARRIED CHILDREN (AGE 21 AND OLDER) OF U.S. CITIZENS

Country New
Cut-off Date
Old
Cut-off Date
Change in Wait Time
General Category 1-Sept-17 1-Sept-17 No Change
China 1-Sept-17 1-Sept-17 No Change
India 1-Sept-17 1-Sept-17 No Change
Mexico 1-Apr-05 1-Jan-03 -2 years, 3 months
Philippines 22-Apr-15 22-Apr-15 No Change

This category sees a 2-year, 3-month change for Mexico, and no change for all other countries.

F-2A: SPOUSES AND UNMARRIED CHILDREN (UNDER AGE 21) OF U.S. GREEN CARD HOLDERS

Country New
Cut-off Date
Old
Cut-off Date
Change in Wait Time
General Category No wait No wait No Change
China No wait No wait No Change
India No wait No wait No Change
Mexico No wait No wait No Change
Philippines No wait No wait No Change

This category sees no change, with all countries remaining current.

IMPORTANT: In April, the Visa Bulletin saw a significant change to the F-2A family-based category (Spouses and Unmarried Children (Under Age 21) of U.S. Green Card Holders).

Due to a growing backlog of cases in this category, the “Final Action Dates” for F-2A applications are no longer “current” for the first time in several years. *“Final Action Dates” refer to applications whose priority dates have reached the front of the line and can now be adjudicated.

Although the “Final Action Dates” are no longer current, the “Dates for Filing” have remained current for the F-2A category, meaning spouses and unmarried children of U.S. green card holders can still file their green card applications for now. Despite still being able to file, these cases will NOT be adjudicated until the priority date is current.

This change is likely to significantly increase wait times for green cards under the F-2A category. Boundless will continue to track this development closely — stay tuned here for future updates.

F-2B: unmarried children (age 21 or older) of U.S. green card holders

Country New
Cut-off Date
Old
Cut-off Date
Change in Wait Time
General Category 1-Jan-17 1-Jan-17 No Change
China  1-Jan-17 1-Jan-17 No Change
India  1-Jan-17 1-Jan-17 No Change
Mexico 1-Aug-04 1-Apr-02 -2 years
Philippines 1-Oct-13 1-Oct-13 No Change

This category sees no change for all countries except Mexico, which sees a 2-year change.

F-3: married children of U.S. citizens

Country New
Cut-off Date
Old
Cut-off Date
Change in Wait Time
General Category 1-Mar-10 1-Mar-10 No Change
China 1-Mar-10 1-Mar-10 No Change
India 1-Mar-10 1-Mar-10 No Change
Mexico 15-June-01  15-June-01 No Change
Philippines 8-Nov-03 8-Nov-03 No Change

This category sees no change for all countries.

F-4: siblings of U.S. citizens

Country New
Cut-off Date
Old
Cut-off Date
Change in Wait Time
General Category 1-Mar-08 1-Mar-08 No Change
China 1-Mar-08 1-Mar-08 No Change
India 22-Feb-06 22-Feb-06 No Change
Mexico 15-April-01 01-April-01 No Change
Philippines 22-Apr-04 22-Apr-04 No Change

This category sees no change for all countries.

EB-1: extraordinary people, outstanding researchers and professors, and multinational executives and managers

Country New
Cut-off Date
Old
Cut-off Date
Change in Wait Time
General Category 1-Aug-23 No wait n/a
China 1-Feb-22 1-Feb-22 No Change
Central America 1-Aug-23 No wait n/a
India  1-Jan-12  1-Feb-22 -9 years, 11 months
Mexico 1-Aug-23 No wait n/a
Philippines 1-Aug-23 No wait n/a

This category sees a 9-year, 11-month regression for India, no change for China, and a change from “no wait” to August 1, 2023 for General Category, Central America, Mexico, and Philippines.

EB-2: exceptional people and advanced degree holders

Country New
Cut-off Date
Old
Cut-off Date
Change in Wait Time
General Category 1-Apr-22 15-Feb-22 -1 month, 2 weeks
China 8-Jul-19 8-June-19 -1 month
Central America 1-Apr-22 15-Feb-22 -1 month, 2 weeks
India 1-Jan-11 1-Jan-11 No Change
Mexico 1-Apr-22 15-Feb-22 -1 month, 2 weeks
Philippines 1-Apr-22 15-Feb-22 -1 month, 2 weeks

This category sees a 1-month, 2-week change for General Category, Central America, Mexico, and the Philippines, a 1-month change for China, and no change for India.

EB-3: bachelor’s degree holders, skilled workers, and unskilled workers

Country New
Cut-off Date
Old
Cut-off Date
Change in Wait Time
General Category 1-May-20 1-Feb-22 -1 year, 9 months
China 1-June-19 1-April-19 -2 months
Central America 1-May-20 1-Feb-22 -1 year, 9 months
India 1-Jan-09 1-Jan-09 No Change
Mexico 1-May-20 1-Feb-22 -1 year, 9 months
Philippines 1-May-20 1-Feb-22 -1 year, 9 months

This category sees a retrogression of -1 year, 9 months for General Category, Central America, Mexico, and Philippines, a 2-month change for China, and no change for India.


The EB-4 “special immigrants” category and the EB-5 “investors” category saw no changes this month.

Category Country New
Cut-off Date
Old
Cut-off Date
Change in Wait Time
EB-4: Special Immigrants General Category 1-Sept-18 1-Sept-18 No Change
China 1-Sept-18 1-Sept-18 No Change
Central America 1-Sept-18 1-Sept-18 No Change
India 1-Sept-18 1-Sept-18 No Change
Mexico 1-Sept-18 1-Sept-18 No Change
Philippines 1-Sept-18 1-Sept-18 No Change
Vietnam 1-Sept-18 1-Sept-18 No Change
EB-5: Investors General Category No wait No wait No Change
China 08-Sept-15 08-Sept-15 No Change
Central America No wait No wait No Change
India 1-April-17 1-April-17 No Change
Mexico No wait No wait No Change
Philippines No wait No wait No Change
Vietnam No wait No wait No Change

Why This Matters

If you’re in line for a green card, it’s important to keep track of actual changes (and likely future developments) in the Visa Bulletin. It’s always a good idea to prepare all the documents needed for your green card application ahead of time, so you can be ready to file as quickly as possible once the Visa Bulletin shows that a green card is available to you. By failing to file in a month when a green card is available, you risk facing a surprise backward movement (“retrogression”) in the next Visa Bulletin, which would close your window of opportunity for filing a green card application. Stay tuned for next month’s update! As always, we’ll highlight all the important changes for you.

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