Monday, May 10, 2010

How long is a piece of string?

How long is a piece of string? That may be easier to answer than how long will we be here for. Currently we are here on H1B/H4 visas. They are due to expire Sept 2012. If they get renewed that will take us to around Sept 2015 most likely. (By then I will be 39(!), Z will be 12 and K will be 10) If Bens employers decided then they were willing to go down the GC route for us then that process could take anywhere from a year if went EB2 route or 7-8 years if went EB3 route. Going by the EB3 route that would take us to around 2022! (By then I would be 46(!!), Z would be 19 and K would be 17) They would be very close to 'aging out' and requiring their own visas to stay, if that is what they wanted. If I am ever to work here and have us become a 2 income family again, we would need to go down the GC route and I am not skilled enough to get my own visa. I know this is an expensive process to go down but part of me wants to know what is going to happen down the road. It is not  my place to question it though. I am not the one currently doing the job. I am not the only one who is affected by this. However, those of you that know me well, know that I am not a very patient person.

If you don't understand Employment Based Green Card then take a gander at this. This is taken from the Visa Bulletin for May 2010 as supplied by the US Department of State.

First:    Priority Workers:  28.6% of the worldwide employment-based
preference level, plus any numbers not required for fourth and fifth preferences.
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.
4.  INA 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 isearlier than the cut-off date listed below.)
mainland born
Certain Religious WorkersCCCCC
Targeted Employment Areas/
Regional Centers
5th Pilot ProgramsCCCCC
The Department of State has available a recorded message with visa availability information which can be heard at:  (area code 202) 663-1541.  This recording will be updated in the middle of each month with information on cut-off dates for the following month.
Employment Third Preference Other Workers Category:  Section 203(e) of the NACARA, as amended by Section 1(e) of Pub. L. 105-139, provides that once the Employment Third Preference Other Worker (EW) cut-off date has reached the priority date of the latest EW petition approved prior to November 19, 1997, the 10,000 EW numbers available for a fiscal year are to be reduced by up to 5,000 annually beginning in the following fiscal year.  This reduction is to be made for as long as necessary to offset adjustments under the NACARA program.  Since the EW cut-off date reached November 19, 1997 during Fiscal Year 2001, the reduction in the EW annual limit to 5,000 began in Fiscal Year 2002.


  1. Oh dear, I'm afraid I had to skim over that - it's worse than looking at double-entry book keeping for me.
    I would advise getting a lawyer if you really need one, although that's not cheap either.

  2. It is not up to us I'm afraid. Employers have to be willing to file for GC for us. We can't do it ourselves. If we could then it would be a different story as we would know what was going to be happening. Just now, we don't know if they will or if they won't. Heck we don't even know if they will apply to renew the visa in 2012!

  3. Don't get too worked up over it, just say to yourself, we'll cross that bridge when we come to it and enjoy today.
    Don't ever say that you aren't skilled enough to get a visa. Right now jobs may be scarce but that's not always going to be the case. You never know what can happen.

  4. Is there any chance they will start the green card process before the visa is due to be renewed in 2012? My employer started the process for me after I'd been working for them for 12 months. Actually slightly sooner I think as I asked them to do it when they offered me a contract for a 2nd year of employment, i.e before the first was finished. I did have to pay the lawyer's fees myself, but it was well worth it! I filed under the second category as I had a Master's degree - but the joke is, for my employment-based green card application we had to 'prove' that there weren't any Americans available who could do my job and I teach English to new Americans!!

  5. I honestly have no idea when (or indeed if) they will start the GC process for us. It would be great if they did it before the renewal is due in 2012 but it is not my place to ask them.


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