While nearly all recent immigration news has pointed to extreme delays and unprecedented challenges with USCIS and the immigration system as a whole, one recent development may actually be good news for many individuals and families awaiting immigration benefits.
According to the most recent Visa Bulletin, spouses and children of Lawful Permanent Residents (LPRs) who may have been awaiting visa availability are now eligible to apply for Adjustment of Status in the United States. The F2A category on the August 2019 bulletin shows that both Date for Filing and Final Action Dates are “current,” which means that there is no additional waiting time for a visa to become available.
Spouses and children of LPRs who are in the country legally (i.e. entered on some type of visa) are now able to file for Adjustment of Status through their US citizen spouse, parent, or stepparent. This is an extremely rare occurrence, as LPR family categories are almost always given less priority than those for US citizens and family members of LPRs often have to wait 2-3 years (or longer) for visa availability.
Apparently, despite a large amount of applicants, fewer than usual are “actively pursuing” final action on their cases. The Department of State thus updated the Visa Bulletin to encourage applicants to proceed with filing their petitions and make use of the annual quota of available visas.
Individuals in this family preference category who are not otherwise ineligible for a green card can now apply for Adjustment of Status and work authorization with USCIS. Permanent resident status will be immediately available to them once the petition is approved.