All Countries – February 2021 Visa Bulletin

Analysis of the February 2021 Visa Bulletin issued by the U.S. State Department for Family Green Card Applicants who are chargeable to 🌐All Countries.

Latest Visa Bulletin

Preference
Final Action
Movement
Remark

🌐All Countries Visa Bulletin for February 2021

F1Sep 15, 2014NoneIn spite of the Green Card suspension, Fiscal Year 2020 (from Oct '19 to Sep '20) was the best of the last 20 years, which did not make much sense. We would welcome stability in the early months of 2021, as opposed to the substantial retrogression we had been fearing. To be noted, the Feb 2020 Visa Bulletin indicates that potential monthly movement in the near future might be 'up to two weeks'.F1 Predictions
F2AFeb 1, 2021+4 weeksAs long as the Green Card Suspension, which stopped processing of Consular F2A, is in effect, F2A should remain 'current'. How quickly will the Biden Administration remove the suspension, and how quickly will that impact the Visa Bulletin is however an open question. This is important: when F2A Consular Processing resumes however, we are talking about trying to fit ~18 months of demand into at most a 9-month window (which is then likely to lead to a cut-off date being re-established at some point in 2021). As for the near future however, the Feb 2020 Visa Bulletin indicates that F2A should remain 'current' in the coming months.F2A Predictions
F2BJul 15, 2015+1 weeksF2B progressed more after the pandemic (from Apr '20 to Sep '20) than before (from Oct '19 to Mar '20), which was very surprising. Especially after a Fiscal Year 2019 which was by far the best of the last 20 years. This seems to indicate that there is difficulty generating enough documentarily qualified candidates in this category. Which might in turn limit risks of retrogressions if any. In any instance, we are seeing here advancement again, and the Feb 2020 Visa Bulletin indicates that potential monthly movement in the near future might be 'up to two weeks'.F2B Predictions
F3Jul 15, 2008+1 weeksF3 shares the same pattern as F2B. It progressed more after the pandemic (from Apr '20 to Sep '20) than before (from Oct '19 to Mar '20), in spite of the Visa Office indicating that the pace of advancement would slow down (it never did). Bottom line is that F3 is trending materially above its long-term averages and risks of retrogression in 2021 are significant. That being said, the resumption of F3 moving forward which took place in Jan 2020 is confirmed in Feb. Plus, the Feb 2020 Visa Bulletin indicates that potential monthly movement might be 'up to three weeks'. So no reason to worry in the near future.F3 Predictions
F4Oct 15, 2006+1 weeksIn Feb '20, F4 suffered a retrogression. The Visa Office said at the time that it was due to a 'dramatic increase' in the number of Documentarily Qualified (DQ) applications, and that they felt they had enough application for the entire Fiscal Year (so until September 2020). Considering that very few of these DQ applications ended up having an Interview, that backlog is still there. As a result, if there is any movement in Fiscal Year 2021, it should be very limited. That being said, F4 started moving forward in Jan 2020, and we have advancement in Feb 2020 as well. Also, the Feb 2020 Visa Bulletin indicates that potential monthly movement might be 'up to two weeks'.F4 Predictions

For other areas see Mexico and the Philippines.


What about F1? (Children of U.S. Citizens who are adults, but not married)

Preference
Final Action
Movement
Remark

🌐All Countries, F1 - February 2021

F1Sep 15, 2014NoneIn spite of the Green Card suspension, Fiscal Year 2020 (from Oct '19 to Sep '20) was the best of the last 20 years, which did not make much sense. We would welcome stability in the early months of 2021, as opposed to the substantial retrogression we had been fearing. To be noted, the Feb 2020 Visa Bulletin indicates that potential monthly movement in the near future might be 'up to two weeks'.F1 Predictions

This is an overview of our F1 predictions (see our 3-year prediction):


What about F2A? (Spouses of Green Card holders, or young Children of Green Card holders who are not married)

Preference
Final Action
Movement
Remark

🌐All Countries, F2A - February 2021

F2AFeb 1, 2021+4 weeksAs long as the Green Card Suspension, which stopped processing of Consular F2A, is in effect, F2A should remain 'current'. How quickly will the Biden Administration remove the suspension, and how quickly will that impact the Visa Bulletin is however an open question. This is important: when F2A Consular Processing resumes however, we are talking about trying to fit ~18 months of demand into at most a 9-month window (which is then likely to lead to a cut-off date being re-established at some point in 2021). As for the near future however, the Feb 2020 Visa Bulletin indicates that F2A should remain 'current' in the coming months.F2A Predictions

This is an overview of our F2A predictions (see our 3-year prediction):


What about F2B? (Children of Green Card holders who are adults, but not married)

Preference
Final Action
Movement
Remark

🌐All Countries, F2B - February 2021

F2BJul 15, 2015+1 weeksF2B progressed more after the pandemic (from Apr '20 to Sep '20) than before (from Oct '19 to Mar '20), which was very surprising. Especially after a Fiscal Year 2019 which was by far the best of the last 20 years. This seems to indicate that there is difficulty generating enough documentarily qualified candidates in this category. Which might in turn limit risks of retrogressions if any. In any instance, we are seeing here advancement again, and the Feb 2020 Visa Bulletin indicates that potential monthly movement in the near future might be 'up to two weeks'.F2B Predictions

This is an overview of our F2B predictions (see our 3-year prediction):


What about F3? (Children of U.S. Citizens who are adults and married)

Preference
Final Action
Movement
Remark

🌐All Countries, F3 - February 2021

F3Jul 15, 2008+1 weeksF3 shares the same pattern as F2B. It progressed more after the pandemic (from Apr '20 to Sep '20) than before (from Oct '19 to Mar '20), in spite of the Visa Office indicating that the pace of advancement would slow down (it never did). Bottom line is that F3 is trending materially above its long-term averages and risks of retrogression in 2021 are significant. That being said, the resumption of F3 moving forward which took place in Jan 2020 is confirmed in Feb. Plus, the Feb 2020 Visa Bulletin indicates that potential monthly movement might be 'up to three weeks'. So no reason to worry in the near future.F3 Predictions

This is an overview of our F3 predictions (see our 3-year prediction):


What about F4? (Brothers and Sisters of U.S. Citizens)

Preference
Final Action
Movement
Remark

🌐All Countries, F4 - February 2021

F4Oct 15, 2006+1 weeksIn Feb '20, F4 suffered a retrogression. The Visa Office said at the time that it was due to a 'dramatic increase' in the number of Documentarily Qualified (DQ) applications, and that they felt they had enough application for the entire Fiscal Year (so until September 2020). Considering that very few of these DQ applications ended up having an Interview, that backlog is still there. As a result, if there is any movement in Fiscal Year 2021, it should be very limited. That being said, F4 started moving forward in Jan 2020, and we have advancement in Feb 2020 as well. Also, the Feb 2020 Visa Bulletin indicates that potential monthly movement might be 'up to two weeks'.F4 Predictions

This is an overview of our F4 predictions (see our 3-year prediction):


If I am going through Adjustment of Status, can I use the Filing Date?

Applicants going through Adjustment of Status are often allowed to use the ‘Filing Date’ of the Visa Bulletin to determine when they are allowed to file Form I-485. Here is the latest:

Preference
Filing Date
Movement
Status
F1Aug 8, 2015+2 weeksYes, the Filing Date can be used
F2AJan 1, 2021+21 weeksYes, the Filing Date can be used
F2BMay 22, 2016+3 weeksYes, the Filing Date can be used
F3Jun 22, 2009+3 weeksYes, the Filing Date can be used
F4October 1, 2007+2 weeksYes, the Filing Date can be used

When will the Interview be scheduled?

The process of scheduling the interview is initiated by U.S. immigration agencies when the following two requirements are met:

  • The applicant’s Priority Date is ‘current’ when compared to the relevant ‘Final Action Date’
  • The applicant’s Green Card Case is ‘interview-ready’ (also called ‘case complete’ or ‘documentarily qualified’, meaning that all the proper Forms, Evidence, and Fees necessary to make a decision on the Green Card Application have been received by U.S. Immigration Agencies).

Being ‘current’ means that the applicant’s Priority Date (which is when Form I-130 was filed) is ‘earlier’ than the relevant Final Action Date. If the relevant Final Action Date is January 1st 2018, then applicants with a Priority Date ‘earlier’ (that is up to December 31st 2016) are said to be current.
The relevant Final Action Date refers to the Final Action Date that applies to applicants based on their preference classification (F1, F2A, F2B, F3, F4) and countries of birth (Mexico, All Countries, …).

The month when the applicant’s Priority Date is current, U.S. Immigration agencies look for an available Interview slot in the month after next (if the applicant’s priority date becomes current in January, then they will start looking for slots in March). How long applicants wait depend on how busy the U.S. Consulate or USCIS Field office is.

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