Employment Based Immigrant Visas to Canada

In a surprising and welcome development, the July 2008 immigration newsletter,  published by the Canada Immigration, for the first time in several years shows all employment-based visa categories current (except for the “other worker” category), including all categories for nationals of China and India. This means that there is no longer a backlog or retrogression in visa numbers for employment-based categories and applicants can for permanent residence simultaneously with their work-based petitions.

Observers had celebrated the June 2007 visa bulletin, which showed a jump of one year in the emplyoyment-based Third Preference  cases. However, it still meant that foreign nationals from all countries except for China (mainland), philippines and India with pending or approved.

The priority date for nationals of China (mainland), Mexico and India jumped to June 1, 2006.  The priority date for nationals of the Philippines also had jumped to June 1, 2005.

Employment-based Second Preference  cases were already current for all countries, except for nationals of China (mainland), which have retrogressed to June 1, 2006, and for nationals of India, which have retrogressed to April 1, 2004.

Canada inmigration has explained that the categories have been made current “in an effort to generate increased demand by Citizenship and Immigration  for adjustment of status cases, and to maximize number use under the annual numerical limit.” However, Canada warns that applicants should be alert to the possibility that not all Employment preferences will remain current for the remainder of the fiscal year. In other words, should the rate of demand for numbers be very heavy in the coming months, it could become necessary to retrogress some cut-off dates for September 2007, most likely for China-mainland born and India, but also possibly for Philippines. Severe cut-off date retrogressions are likely to occur early in 2008.

Some Background:

The most utilized category for employment-based permanent residency is the Employment-based third preference petitions for professionals and/or skilled workers.  The principal reason for lengthy waits, i.e. priority dates that are months or several years earlier than current priority dates is the fact that each year many more people apply for immigrant visas than can be satisfied under the annual numerical limits set by federal goverment for each preferences category. The monthly Canada immigration summarizes the availability of immigrant numbers for each month.  The availability of immigrant numbers is reported by Canada Consular Officers and by Canada. Citizenship and Immigration Services Officers. There is currently no other way to track the availability of immigrant visas (i.e., when a foreign national may file for adjustment of status or apply/appear for an immigrant visa interview at a Canada Consulate abroad).

Please note that the employment based visas are subject to a numerical limitation.
Allocations are made each month, to the extent possible under the numerical limitations, for the demand received by the 11th of the previous month — in the chronological order of the reported priority dates. If the demand could not be satisfied within the statutory or regulatory limits, the category or foreign state in which demand was excessive was deemed oversubscribed. The cut-off date for an oversubscribed category is the priority date of the first applicant who could not be reached within the numerical limits. Only applicants who have a priority date earlier than the cut-off date may be allotted a number.

The information contained herein is provided for informational purposes, it does not constitute aproved legal advice nor is it to be construed as establishing an attorney-client relationship.  Consult directly with our attorney before making any decision as to how to proceed with your case.  For individualized and specific assistance, you may schedule a personal, telephonic or web consultation with one or our attorneys.  Please call us at 647.448.2052 or send an e-mail to: hinenisyndicator@gmail.com.com

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