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It is the Priority Date that determines when the foreign national is able to file the final stage of the application for the Green Card. This final stage of the Green Card process is known as the Adjustment of Status (if the person is in the United States) or Visa Processing (if person is outside the United States). Final Processing means that the INS will accept an Adjustment Packet at the local Immigration office or will begin the final process at a consular post.

Understand that the priority date system is only used for Preference Petitions (1st: over 21 years of age child of U.S. parent; 2nd A: spouse and child-under 21 years of age- of Lawful Permanent Residents; 2nd B: over 21 year old child of Lawful Permanent Resident; 3rd: married child of US parent; 4th: Brothers and Sisters of U.S. Citizens. Immediate Relatives (Spouse and children under 21 of U.S. Citizens and Parents of U.S. Citizens who are over 21) do not have to concern themselves with this system, as there are basically unlimited visas for this group. Priority Date is used in employment-based cases that requires Labor Certification (these are 3rd preference for skilled workers and Other Workers such as Domestics, Babysitters, and Home Attendants. The Priority Date is the officially acknowledged date that the case was filed either at the state level Department of Labor office referred to as the SESA for Labor Certification cases (Green Card through your job) or in special employment cases where the category that does not require labor certification, then the priority date assigned by the INS is the date the I-140 (Immigrant Visa Petition) is received by the INS Service Center or in family cases, when the I-130 form is filed with the Service.

You can determine when your Priority Date is current in order to complete your application by checking the dates each month on the Visa Bulletin chart. Every month the U.S. Department of State publishes the Visa Bulletin, which indicate whether a priority date, is current or whether there is a backlog in order to file for the Adjustment of Status.

The Priority Date Tracker© a service of  simplifies this procedure by placing your email address in their database and comparing your Priority Date to the current Priority Date for your category. A report is generated and forward to you each month. 60 days before you Priority Date becomes current, you will receive a notice and instructions for the next step required to complete you application for Permanent Residency.

The Priority Date Tracker©  is a FREE SERVICE of VisaBulletin.US. Click below:

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