Visa Bulletin for February 2021


The latest green card waiting lists as of February 2021

Jan 24, 2021


The U.S. Department of State released its Visa Bulletin for February 2021. 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 February, all family-based applicants — except those in the F-2A category — must use the “Dates for Filing” (available on the State Department’s website), whereas F-2A must use the “Final Action Dates.” Employment-based visa applicants must use the “Final Action Dates, as must applicants filing from outside the United States.

Family-Based Green Card Backlogs

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

CountryNew
Cut-off Date
Old
Cut-off Date
Change in Wait Time
General Category8-Aug-1522-Jul-15-2 weeks, 3 days
China8-Aug-1522-Jul-15-2 weeks, 3 days
India8-Aug-1522-Jul-15-2 weeks, 3 days
Mexico1-Mar-0022-Feb-00-1 week, 1 day
Philippines22-Oct-128-Oct-12-2 weeks
  • This category sees movement for all countries:
    • Two week advances for all countries except Mexico, which sees a one-month advance.

    F-2A: spouses and unmarried children (under age 21) of U.S. green card holders

    CountryNew
    Cut-off Date
    Old
    Cut-off Date
    Change in Wait Time
    General CategoryNo waitNo waitNo Change
    ChinaNo waitNo waitNo Change
    IndiaNo waitNo waitNo Change
    MexicoNo waitNo waitNo Change
    PhilippinesNo waitNo waitNo Change
    • No countries advance this month, therefore all countries retain the same priority date.

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

    CountryNew
    Cut-off Date
    Old
    Cut-off Date
    Change in Wait Time
    General Category22-May-161-May-16-3 weeks
    China22-May-161-May-16-3 weeks
    India22-May-161-May-16-3 weeks
    Mexico22-Dec-991-Dec-99-3 weeks
    Philippines15-Apr-121-Apr-12-2 weeks

This category sees movement for all countries:

  • All countries advance this month by three weeks, except for the Philippines, which advances two weeks.

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

CountryNew
Cut-off Date
Old
Cut-off Date
Change in Wait Time
General Category22-Jun-091-Jun-09-3 weeks
China22-Jun-091-Jun-09-3 weeks
India22-Jun-091-Jun-09-3 weeks
Mexico8-Sep-0015-Aug-00-3 weeks, 1 day
Philippines8-Jan-0322-Dec-02-2 weeks, 3 days
  • All countries advance this month:
    • Most countries see three-week advances, except the Philippines, which sees a two-week advance.

F-4: siblings of U.S. citizens

CountryNew
Cut-off Date
Old
Cut-off Date
Change in Wait Time
General Category1-Oct-0715-Sep-07-2 weeks, 2 days
China1-Oct-0715-Sep-07-2 weeks, 2 days
India1-Dec-0522-Nov-05-1 week, 2 days
Mexico8-May-9922-Apr-99-2 weeks, 2 days
Philippines1-Oct-021-Sep-02-1 month
  • This category sees movement for all countries:
    • The Philippines advances by one month, and all other countries advance by two weeks.

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

CountryNew
Cut-off Date
Old
Cut-off Date
Change in Wait Time
General CategoryNo waitNo waitNo Change
China1-Jan-201-Sep-19-4 months
Central AmericaNo waitNo waitNo Change
India01Jan2001Sep19-4 months
MexicoNo waitNo waitNo Change
PhilippinesNo waitNo waitNo Change
VietnamNo waitNo waitNo Change

Most countries remain current (meaning there is no wait) and two see movement in this category:

  • No wait for the General Category, Central America, Mexico, Vietnam and the Philippines.
  • Four-month advance for India and China.

EB-2: exceptional people and advanced degree holders

CountryNew
Cut-off Date
Old
Cut-off Date
Change in Wait Time
General CategoryNo waitNo waitNo Change
China15-Jun-161-Jun-16-2 weeks
Central AmericaNo waitNo waitNo Change
India12-Oct-098-Oct-09-4 days
MexicoNo waitNo waitNo Change
PhilippinesNo waitNo waitNo Change
VietnamNo waitNo waitNo Change

Most countries remain current (meaning there is no wait) and two see movement in this category:

  • No wait for the General Category, Central America, Mexico, Vietnam and the Philippines.
  • Four-day advance for India and two-week advance for China.

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

CountryNew
Cut-off Date
Old
Cut-off Date
Change in Wait Time
General CategoryNo wait01Apr19No Change
China1-Jan-1815-Dec-17-2 weeks, 3 days
Central AmericaNo wait01Apr19No Change
India1-Apr-1022-Mar-10-1 week, 3 days
MexicoNo wait01Apr19No Change
PhilippinesNo wait01Apr19No Change
VietnamNo wait01Apr19No Change

Most countries remain current (meaning there is no wait) and two see movement in this category:

  • No wait for the General Category, Central America, Mexico, Vietnam and the Philippines.
  • Two-week advance for China and one-week advance for India.

In the EB-4 “special immigrants” category, most countries remain current, and Central America and Mexico advance.

In the EB-5 category almost all countries remain current, except for Vietnam, which sees a one-month advance, while China remains static.

CategoryCountryNew
Cut-off Date
Old
Cut-off Date
Change in Wait Time
EB-4: Special ImmigrantsGeneral CategoryNo waitNo waitNo Change
ChinaNo waitNo waitNo Change
Central America15Apr1801Mar18-1 month, 2 weeks
IndiaNo waitNo waitNo Change
Mexico15-Dec-181-Dec-18-2 weeks
PhilippinesNo waitNo waitNo Change
VietnamNo waitNo waitNo Change
EB-5: InvestorsGeneral CategoryNo waitNo waitNo Change
China15-Aug-1515-Aug-15No Change
Central AmericaNo waitNo waitNo Change
IndiaNo waitNo waitNo Change
MexicoNo waitNo waitNo Change
PhilippinesNo waitNo waitNo Change
Vietnam1-Oct-1715-Sep-17-2 weeks, 2 days

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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