Understanding the Impact of F2A, EB-1 and EB-3 Retrogression on Employment and Family-Based Immigration

Posted on Aug 4, 2023 by Chris Prescott

For anyone who follows and reads the visa bulletin you are probably used to receiving bad news. Visa retrogression is part and parcel of the visa bulletin and the later it gets in the year the worse the new usually becomes. The August, 2023 visa bulletin is no exception.

The visa bulletin is a monthly publication by the U.S. Department of State that provides information on the availability of immigrant visa numbers for various family-sponsored and employment-based categories, indicating when foreign nationals can apply for their green cards.

The main areas of concern for August include the F-2A category for family-based, and both the EB-1 India and EB-3 rest of the world.

F2A category

The F2A category is a family-sponsored immigrant visa category in the United States that is designated for spouses and unmarried children (under 21 years old) of lawful permanent residents (Green Card holders).

In the July visa bulletin, the cutoff date for F2A (except for Mexico) was September 8, 2020. The August Visa Bulletin retrogresses this date to October 8, 2017. Mexico retrogresses from November 1, 2018, to September 1, 2016.

EB-1 India

The EB-1 category includes those with extraordinary abilities, outstanding researchers and professors and multinational managers and executives. EB-1 has always been a great option for Indian nationals and can result in a green card significantly faster than its counterparts EB-2 and EB-3. However, the August visa bulletin retrogresses EB-1 from February 1, 2022, to January 1, 2012. After getting over the initial shock of 10-year retrogression readers of the visa bulletin should read the DOS’ comments towards the bottom of the page. In October of this year DOS expects to advance EB-1 India to at least the final action date listed in the July 2023 visa bulletin, i.e., February 1, 2022.


The cutoff date for all other countries, Mexico and Philippines retrogresses from February 1, 2022, to May 1, 2020. Although DOS does not comment on what the future holds, they do state they will continually monitor this and make any necessary adjustments. Even if September sees no movement with the start of the fiscal year in October, we will surely see some advancements in these dates.

PLG will continue to monitor the visa bulletin and provides updates as necessary. If you have any questions regarding the above please reach out to PLG Partner, Chris Prescott at cprescott@patellegal.com.