Processing Times FAQs

Unless the context shows otherwise, all answers here were provided by Rajiv and were compiled and reported by our editorial team from comments and blog on

Tuesday, December 1, 2020 - 23:08

Green Card holder stuck outside the US for more than a year


I am a US citizen who Sponsored my fathers green card in 2010. His green card is expiring oct 2020. He had to stay in India since Jan 2019 due to health conditions. With the Covid pandemic situation and his age (81) and health conditions, he is not able to travel back to the united States before the green card expiry. My father does not have any family in India to take care of him and will have to come here so that my brother and I can take care of him. What are our options for avoiding the expiry of the green card? Secondly, is there a 60 day extension on the expiry date due to Covid 19?


Monday, December 14, 2015 - 03:21

How to Calculate Dates from Visa Bulletin


How can I calculate my sister's possible visa interview? I am confused with these changes on final action date etc.


See clip from Attorney Rajiv S. Khanna's conference call video that addresses this question. 

FAQ Transcript:

Priority Date (PD) is the date when your green card visa numbers are available. It means that you are entitled to get your green card. It doesn’t mean you can get it right away. But it means you are in a stage were you are about to get your green card. So Priority Date is usually the date on which your application was started. In case of family based petitions Priority Date is when I-130 was filed. In the case of Employment based cases it is based upon when PERM was filed. Employment based cases were PERM is not involved, direct I-140 is involved such as National Interest Waivers, EB-1s - Priority Date is the date you file the I-140. Your Priority Date depends upon the date your case was started. That’s one thing you got to worry about.

 When you go to Visas Bulletin which is a monthly publication of the US Department of State it tells you what visa dates are expected to be curbed or in other words where the queue is for the next month. So in December they will issue predictions for January, in January they will issue predictions for February, then on top of that you have to worry about processing times. Sometimes for e.g.: in US Citizen’s cases there is no Priority Date back up, dates are immediately current for e.g.: spouse of a US Citizen, parent of a US Citizen, minor unmarried child of a US Citizen, there are no Priority Date   issues here. In these cases, you have to worry only about the processing times. So when you file the form the form takes set amount of time to process. Now a new concept has been started a couple of months ago, if you go to the USCIS website it tells you if you are in the United States this is the date when you can file your last step of the green card process. If you are outside USA this is the date, you can expect to receive further paper work from the consulate. It doesn’t mean you are going to get your green card right away but you are eligible or close to getting it.

Here is another variable. How much time is it taking at that consulate to schedule interviews. Some consulates are heavily overworked. Some consulates are relatively less worked. So that’s the fourth variable. First variable was Priority Date, second variable is processing times, third variable is final action dates which is also the part of Visa Bulletin a slightly different table, and the fourth is the local processing times.

Question: How can I calculate my sister's possible visa interview? I am confused with these changes on final action date etc. Her PD is 1 Feb, 2011 visa category F2B. She has already submitted dox to NVC. When she was waiting for the visa date she turned 21 and moved to f2b cat.1. When do you think it will be? Which table to consider? At the Visa bulletin one, I mean. 

First of all, if her Priority Date is current normally within a few months, probably less than six months. At the Visa Bulletin the final action table tells you approximately when she can expect her final documents.

Question: Once the other parent becomes citizen in USA would it be helpful to submit another petition for her? Would you advise it to be in the safe side? 

You can. You can file multiple cases for the same individual. That is not a problem. As long as you see some gain in it depending upon the country she was born in, in filing through two separate categories you can certainly do that.

Wednesday, December 5, 2012 - 01:42

Premium Processing for EB-1-3


Has USCIS provided an update on premium processing for EB-1-3 multinational managers and executives. At the AILA conference in Nashville, it was reported that it would be available by the end of the fiscal year.


USCIS does not anticipate expanding Premium Processing Service to include EB-1-3 multinational executives and managers for the foreseeable future.

Wednesday, November 14, 2012 - 00:02

I-140 Petition Through Premium Processing


Should I file my I-140 petition through regular processing or premium processing?


Currently USCIS is accepting premium processing for certain I-140 categories. In addition to the regular filing fee, there is an additional $1,225.00 filing fee to upgrade to premium processing. If an I-140 is filed with premium processing, USCIS will issue a determination or an RFE within 15 calendar days.

Typically, these are some of the reasons when an I-140 should be filed through premium processing:
1) When an I-140 approval is needed to extend H-1 beyond the 6 years. Please see Rajiv’s blog entry for more information:…

2) If you would like to know the outcome of the I-140 as soon as possible.

3) When the priority date is current and the I-485 could be approved quickly.

4) When requesting priority date carry-over from a previously approved case and would have a current priority date when the new I-140 is approved. This would allow the I-485 to be filed faster.

Typically, these are some of the reasons when an I-140 can be filed through regular processing. To find out the current USCIS processing times, please visit:

1) If the priority date is not current, and therefore I-140 approval doesn’t benefit the applicant in any way.

2) If any evidence is not available at the time the I-140 is filed, and would be available in the next few months. Examples include:
a. Financial information from the employer – if the latest tax returns are required to show ability to pay and the company has not yet filed. By the time the I-140 is reviewed and an RFE issued, the company would have had time to prepare and file the tax returns.
b. Experience letters – if there is a delay in getting the letters from previous employers. The employee would have several more months to acquire the letters by the time the USCIS issues an RFE.

Additional points to keep in mind when deciding to file regular processing or premium processing:
1) It is commonly believed that an I-140 filed under premium processing will receive additional scrutiny by USCIS. In our experience, this is not true - all I-140’s are reviewed the same way and issued an RFE if USCIS requires additional information or evidence.
2) An I-140 filed under regular processing can be upgraded to premium processing even after regular filing. The 15-day processing time starts when the request for upgrade is received.