Employment-Based Visa Availability Before October 1, 2009

The State Department has advised AILA liaison that due to the large number of approvals issued in the past few weeks, employment-based visa numbers are no longer available for this fiscal year that concludes on September 30, 2009. This affects all categories of employment based immigrant visas. Numbers will become available again on October 1, 2009, as stated in the October 2009 Department of State Visa (DOS) Bulletin.

USCIS will continue to accept I-485 applications in categories showing visa availability based on the September Visa Bulletin, USCIS will not able to approve pending I-485 applications unless a visa number was previously captured. Where a USCIS officer adjudicated or pre-adjudicated a case and it was in the DOS “pending” queue and DOS has sent the electronic notification allocating a number to the Service Center, USCIS should issue the approval.

For those consular processing, because visa numbers for scheduled cases have already been allocated as part of the scheduling process, scheduled immigrant visa appointments at consulates for September will continue and immigrant visas may be issued.

We will keep you posted with more information of course.