How do I read the family based Visa Bulletin?

////How do I read the family based Visa Bulletin?
Please note that if you are an immediate relative you don’t need to wait for a visa and you don’t have to worry about this bulletin.

If you are not an immediate relative you must identify your Preference Category:

First category is called F1 who are Unmarried Sons and Daughters of U.S. Citizens approximately 23,400 issued annually.

Second category is split between Spouses and Children of Permanent Residents and Unmarried Sons and Daughters of Permanent Residents.  Approximately 114,200, issued annually.

  • F2A are Spouses and Children of Permanent Residents and this group comprises 77% of the overall second preference limitation; and
  • F2B are Unmarried Sons and Daughters (21 years of age or older) of Permanent Resident and this group comprises 23% of the overall second preference limitation.

Third category is F3 or Married Sons and Daughters of U.S. Citizens.  There are approximately 23,400 per year.

Fourth category is F4 Brothers and Sisters of Adult U.S. Citizens and approximately 65,000 are issued each year.

Next, identify your country of nationality (If you are claiming chargeability from a country other than China, India, Mexico or Philippines, then you should refer to the first column, labeled “All Chargeability Areas Except Those Listed.”) The cell that represents your Preference Category and Country of Nationality will contain either a date or a letter.  If a cell is marked “C” that means that the Priority Date is current in that Category and visa numbers are available. If a cell is marked “U” it means that no visas are available for the rest of the fiscal year (which ends on September 30). If a date appears in the cell, then that date signifies the visa “cut-off” date. Applicants must have a Priority Date that falls before the date listed in the cell in order to apply for a Green Card.