US Immigrant Visas Based on Occupation

Until the proposed Comprehensive Immigration Reform Bill in the US Congress becomes law, foreign professionals and skilled workers must compete with the 40,000 immigrant visas worldwide under the EB3 category (Skilled workers, professionals and Other Workers).

Those who have Masters or PhDs may apply for immigrant visas on their own (EB2, without a sponsoring employer). They must, however, prove that granting them green cards will be to the national interest of the United States.

The other categories such as Religious workers (EB4) ; those who are on the top of their field e.g., science, arts, education, business, athletics (EB1), and especially immigrant investors (EB5), are not required to prove that there are no US citizens or residents willing and able to take the job.

So how many visas are currently available for Filipino applicants in the EB categories – and how many are waiting (meaning they have approved petitions but they must wait until their priority dates become current)?

  The State Departments report on (1) the number of visas available and (2) the immigrant visa waiting list shows how supply (visa applicants) exceeds the supply (visa allocation).  Please note that the worldwide limit or visas available means this total number is further divided among all other countries.

Hence, while the visas available in the EB3 is 48,400 and the Philippines has 36,978, the EB3 visa available to the Philippines (based on the 25,620 per country limit for all categories) is only 3,550. Since there are 36,978 Filipino EB3 applicants and only 3,550 available for the rest of the year, the remaining 33,428 must wait until their priority dates become current and they are considered as “documentarily qualified.”

Category             Visas                     On Waiting        

                                Available             List       

 

EB1                       45,188                  0

EB2                       45,188                  377

EB3                       48,400                  36,978

Other Workers                                 1,278

EB4                       11,128                  27

EB5                       11,128                  0            

 

The most viable alternative (for those in the EB3 classification) is to look for visa options within the EB categories, such as moving up to EB2 or EB1; or explore working visas in the US. The next logical step is to look for visa and migration options just across the border (Canada) under the Federal Skilled Worker, Provincial Nominee Program or Canadian Experience Class as well as exploring the Student to Resident pathways in the four countries with permanent migration programs – Australia, Canada, New Zealand and the UK.

To find out which visa or migration option is for you, complete the online form above (Personal Intake Sheet Online) for a free assessment. You can also call the Immigrant Visa Center at 02-634-8717.

Got a question? Let us know - we're here to help.

About the Author

Crispin Aranda

Crispin Aranda

Crispin R. Aranda is an established International Visa Conselor and Immigrant Advocate. He is the president of IVC and is in several migration radio programs.


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