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15 March 2010

Director Mayorkas - Our Work Touches the Lives of Many

(in Spanish)

About twenty years ago I visited my great aunt and uncle in their apartment in Brooklyn where they had settled after emigrating from Cuba. They had prepared a sandwich for me wrapped in a neatly-cut square of wax paper. After lunch my great aunt took the wax-paper square, ironed the creases with her hand, and placed the flattened square on a stack of wax paper squares resting atop her refrigerator. My great aunt and uncle understood the value of each cent and the struggle it took to earn it.

As I have embarked upon my tenure as the Director of U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services I have carried my memory of the wax paper squares as a strong reminder that our Agency is funded mostly by the hard-earned fees that immigrants pay us. Our Agency is, as a result, ethically obligated to spend this money with extraordinary care and in the service of the immigrants and others whom we serve. This care and this service - together with our commitment to integrity, consistency, and transparency - are values that guide our Agency as we administer the largest immigration system in the world.

In giving life to our nation's immigration laws, we must look at our work and its impact through the eyes of the public we serve, including immigrants yearning to build a better life for their families, businesses in need of specialized skills that are unavailable here, individuals seeking refuge from home-country conditions that no person should have to endure, and the general public. Our work touches the lives of many and helps build a strong foundation for our nation, one that carries forward our tradition as a nation of immigrants while fulfilling our responsibility to protect the integrity of our system and the security of our homeland.

As we open our arms to those who rightfully see our nation as a beacon of hope and opportunity, so too must we as an agency open our doors and be transparent to those with an interest in our mission. We will not shrink from criticism but instead work hard not to deserve it; we will recognize our failures and use them as instructive steps to future success; and, we will build upon our achievements to become the agency of which our nation can be most proud. You deserve this, and so do my colleagues.

I came to this country in 1960, my family having fled Cuba so that my sister and I, and later my brothers, could realize the promise of democracy. I am forever mindful of the journey we made and the challenges it involved. The wax paper atop my great aunt's refrigerator is a lasting symbol, one that guides me as we at U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services make the journey possible for others and help define our nation in that spirit.

Alejandro Mayorkas
U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services
Department of Homeland Security

UPDATE: For more, check out this video of Director Alejandro Majorkas speaking before the Migration Policy Institute.



At March 15, 2010 at 5:19:00 PM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

You are correct and that is why we request you to accept application for India and China for Change of Status(I-485). Currently they are not accepted as a result we cannot file EAD and Advance payroll. This helps to get everyone on wait line at last stage and benefit something from the organization. I Agree That you will tend towards DOS and they will point fingers at others etc but at the end LEGAL immigrants like us feel the heat. We pay regular TAX and came to the country legally and staying legally. Still the country is not helping us. We want you to do something. Atleast Accept all the applications like in 2007 and provide EAD and Advance payroll for all Approved I-140.

At March 15, 2010 at 7:17:00 PM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Director Mayorkas:

You stated "[O]ur Agency is, as a result, ethically obligated to spend this money with extraordinary care and in the service of the immigrants and others whom we serve. This care and this service - together with our commitment to integrity, consistency, and transparency - are values that guide our Agency as we administer the largest immigration system in the world."

Words do not mean much unless followed by action. At present, your agency is viewed by many as arrogant, inept and dictatorial regime. I know it sounds harsh but the fact of the matter is this is the TRUTH!
An example, I recently petitioned USCIS for green card under one of the Visa categories which is current for all applicants. The Adjudicating officer sent me a Notice for Intent to Deny without even bothering to review a single evidence, as if I has sent a blank pages. I responded with reasoning as to why my petition should be approved. I was told I will hear from USCIS in 60 days. Guess what, 6 months passed and I heard nothing. On querying your Office, a hurriedly drafted denial notice was mailed, again as if I had mailed blank pages, with a request that I MUST file some 500 dollars to file a Notice of Appeal. In other words, just to get my I-140 adjudicated, I was being compelled to pay some $ 800/-.

Another example, I wrote directly to the Regional Director of Vermont, about two months ago, explaining to him that the Adjudicating Officer(s) had in a blatantly prejudicial manner denied my petition. The adjudicating officer had cited case laws that were most irrelevant, had waited for more than 6 months to deny EAD (contrary to the law) and failed to issue Fingerprint (FP) notice, i.e., consumed the FP fee (again contrary to the law). Guess what, the pride or the arrogance of the Regional Officer is so huge that he even failed to send a letter acknowledging that my petition was received or is being reviewed. I assure you that I have corresponded with people who are very high in the hierarchy of US administration, yet they have been humble enough to have the courtesy to send a response. Therefore, it makes me wonder if the power granted to the Director at Vermont has made him so arrogant, i.e., makes him feel I am untouchable!

I am sure you will hear many more examples, like these, from others.

On another note, agreed, applicants from India and China outnumber the number of visas currently available. However, that does not mean that they should be treated as lesser of human beings. An alternative, amicable solution MUST be found. For example, interim green card system should be introduced effective immediately. Also draconian laws, such as petitioners should remain in same profession for 5-10 years MUST be scrapped effective immediately. For those who cannot file I-485 b/c visa dates are not current, immediate alternative must be provided.
If not implemented, USCIS will be viewed as an agency which discriminates on the basis of race or nationality, prohibited by The United States Constitution (and Title VII).

Truth is bitter; I hope you will take it as a medicine to find a cure…
Respectfully submitted…

PS also recommend you to read postings at:

At March 16, 2010 at 4:25:00 PM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...


Please have mercy on us. Don;t make us wait in line for EB green cards for 10+years while being at the mercy of greedy employers all that time.

I personally had to pass up so many career opportunities where I could grow and develop myself just to keep the GC process alive.

At March 16, 2010 at 4:31:00 PM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...


Why EB applicants are regarded as unwanted in US immigration system. At the same time there are so MANY fake marriages and fake asylum cases out there. I am sorry I am in EB stream. I wanted to make things right..

At March 16, 2010 at 4:51:00 PM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

I have a suggestion. Can you make a new policy, charge $10,000 - premium process in 485 approval. I promise you will get at least 50K applications. This will resolve 2 problems.

1. It will get USCIS $500 mil that can be used for betterment of system and enforcement.

2. It will take 50,000 people out of torture room who are there for 8-10 years.

At March 16, 2010 at 7:37:00 PM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Dear Mr. Mayorkas
And for those of us who applied for AOS during July/2007, continue to pay hefty fees for EAD and AP renewals year after year.
This is the case particularly for employment based EB3 India applicants. With current priority dates way back in 2001, we anticipate no quick end to it than continue to pay for renewals year after year. This just seems unfair!

At March 17, 2010 at 9:31:00 AM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Dear Mr. Alejandro,

This is a great way to communicate and effectively convey to wider audience. As a legal immigration community we would like you to consider granting multiyear Advance parole and EAD for severely retrogressed countries. If the current immigration law is not changed, my priority dates would be current in another estimated 17 years. It would be greatly helpful to vast majority of people from retrogressed categories if your agency can issue a MULTI YEAR SINGLE Document EAD and Advance Parole.
I hope this comment will not go in vain.

Thank you.

At March 17, 2010 at 9:32:00 AM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

We appreciate your effort to streamline the functioning of the USCIS.There are somany families that are suffering because of the long wait in getting Green Card.There should be a way to stream line your process to file I-485 for all those whoes I-140 is approved.Please eliminate per country limit and introduce a common pool where FIFO(First IN First Out) method is introduced.I request you to accept application for India and China for Change of Status(I-485). Currently they are not accepted as a result we cannot file EAD and Advance payroll. This helps to get everyone on wait line at last stage and benefit something from the organization. Many legal immigrants frustrated with the way the whole process of getting a green Card in EB3 takes about not less than 100 years in the present scenario.It deosn't make any sense.Please think for a while how the families suffering with frustration on the green card process.We pay regular TAX and came to the country legally and staying legally. Still the country is not helping us. We want you to do something. Atleast Accept all the applications like in 2007 and provide EAD and Advance payroll for all Approved I-140.

At March 17, 2010 at 10:27:00 AM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

It's very true that your work touch the lives of so many. I'm looking forward to your understanding and necessary help for the possibility of I-485 pre-registration.

OK. I missed 2007 july I-485 filing by a month. I still can't file my I-485 even now in 2010. I'm PERM based. For that reason I can't change my job, can't get relocated, can't get promoted. can't buy a house because I don't know where my legal status is going, even after legally live in US 10 years and pay all of the taxes for 6 years.

3 years after my green card process got started. 6 years after working with the same employer. Please
help us in some way to get some freedom for my career developemnt.It's too long to put the career and my family on hold.They are tied up together.

At March 17, 2010 at 10:29:00 AM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

You stated "[O]ur Agency is, as a result, ethically obligated to spend this money with extraordinary care and in the service of the immigrants and others whom we serve. This care and this service - together with our commitment to integrity, consistency, and transparency - are values that guide our Agency as we administer the largest immigration system in the world."
It would be nice to see equity in processing petitions that the USCIS receives. For example, I filed an I-129F petition for my K-1 fiancee visa well over 90 days ago and it's still in initial review. Other who have filed much more recently than I did already have been approved and have passed the NVC phase and are already at the Embassy awaiting interview dates.

Shouldn't petitions be processed in the order that they've been received? Besides those petitions that are eligible for expedited processing, shouldn't a petition that was filed on December 15 be approved before a petition that was filed mid-January????

At March 17, 2010 at 11:29:00 AM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

When you know things, what is stopping USCIS in granting permenant residency to fellows waiting for years..

We are still holding same job titles/ same pay because of filed LCA description -- this is a type of exploitation we are facing from employers.

Please release us from this pain and give us freedom atleast EAD's no need green cards and remove the restrictions to work for a particular employer ONLY.

At March 17, 2010 at 12:07:00 PM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Support the first comments!Please accept application for India and China for Change of Status(I-485). Currently they are not accepted as a result we cannot file EAD and Advance payroll.

At March 17, 2010 at 1:01:00 PM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

I think if USCIS could just answer this one question for EB Immigrants, none of us would have any complaints:

"What is the exact date on which I will get my green card?"

At March 17, 2010 at 1:43:00 PM EDT , Anonymous Ilya Kapovich said...

I came to this country in 1992 on an F-1 visa to pursue a PhD degree and, after a long immigration journey, I became a U.S. citizen in May 2009.

Of all the U.S. government agencies, my dealings with INS and then USCIS have been by far the most frustrating. I have encountered an astonishing degree of rudeness and incompetence as well as outright dishonesty among INS/USCIS employees and contractors.

I have a few specific suggestions in this regard:

1) Get rid of the National Customer Service Center and re-instate direct customer service toll-free numbers for all the individual regional Service Centers and the National Benefit Center. When the National Customer Service Center was introduced, it was presented as an efficiency measure that would allow to consolidate all customer service inquiries and save time and money for both USCIS and its customers. In fact, exactly the opposite occurred. The phone lines at the National Customer Service Center are staffed not with USCIS employees but with private contractors who do not have direct access to the applicants' files and are only allowed to talk from a limited script. In practice, they can offer no useful or meaningful information, are poorly trained and often give false or misleading answers. If a caller is sufficiently lucky and insistent, his/her inquiry may be forwarded to an actual regional/local service center dealing with a particular application; and that center would typically provide a formulaic and uninformative written response.
This system is both inefficient and frustrating for all people concerned and it costs USCIS a great deal of money that could be put to a better use. I urge you to restore the older arrangement where it was possible to call directly the service center dealing with a particular application and to talk to a USCIS employee who has access to the application in question.

2) As a matter of open government, I would like the USCIS website to provide names and office addresses of the Directors of all regional service centers and field offices. USCIS customers should be able to contact these officials in writing.

3) You need to provide more substantive and meaningful information in written responses to service inquiries regarding status of individual cases. At the moment these responses are very formulaic and uninformative and typically do not explain anything about the reason for a delay or about the expected time when the case may be adjudicated or at least moved to the next stage.

In my long experience in dealing with USCIS the ONLY times I was able to get substantive rather than pro forma responses from USCIS were in response to inquiries via members of Congress.

4) The online case status system is badly in need of modernization. One specific suggestion here is that the online cases status check provide cumulative data about ALL major USCIS actions in relation to a given case, and not just the last action (application received, fingerprint appointment letter issued, case transferred to a local office for an interview, interview scheduled, RFE issued, RFE response received, naturalization oath scheduled etc).

5) The last point is perhaps the most difficult one to implement, but I think you should still try. I find the situation where USCIS is almost entirely funded by user fees to be quite irrational. USCIS performs functions of direct benefit and importance to the U.S. economy, homeland security and thousands of specific U.S. citizens. As such, USCIS deserves to have a significant portion of its budget funded by direct congressional appropriations.


Ilya Kapovich,
Champaign, Illinois

At March 17, 2010 at 2:27:00 PM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Thank you for opening this blog.

Please fix INA 212(A)(3)(B). We came here to escape Insecurities and fear. We are here because we trust the American Justice system. Don't fail us. It is sad to be labelled as terrorists while we are a victim of torture and imprisonment.

Please sir, review and fix INA 212(A)(3)(B).

At March 17, 2010 at 2:34:00 PM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

USCIS Director Mayorkas -

Countries like Canada, UK, Australia keep updating their immigration almost every 2 to 3 years. But, in this country it keeps false hope and promise to immigrants and affecting us in long term plan for settling family.

I am from India, and It is interesting to read proposal provided to help immigrants like me, waiting legally for nearly a decade to get permanent resident status based on skilled employment category.

Below is the URL of proposal published to public people, can you please consider and help us?

At March 17, 2010 at 3:32:00 PM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Dear Mr. Mayorkas,
Thank you very much for all the initiatives that you have started to make your organization transparent, and efficient. There is no doubt that you are aware of the EB greencard situation especially for the countries with huge backlogs.
I bring to your notice the following article which is specifically addressed to you.

I would like to bring the following paragraph in this article to your notice.

"Third, the authors propose that we should count only the principal beneficiaries of I-140 or I-130 petitions and not family members under the employment or family-based quotas. There is nothing in INA § 203(d) that explicitly provides authority for family members to be counted under the preference quotas. While a derivative is “entitled to the same status, and the same order of consideration” as the principal, nothing requires that family members also be given numbers. This ambiguity in INA § 203(d) provides the Executive with an opportunity to exclude family members against the employment or family quotas, which could potentially resolve the priority date crisis significantly."

If you can get this done, it would be of great help to the EB based immigrant community.

Thank You.

At March 17, 2010 at 3:37:00 PM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Dear Mr. Mayorkas,

Number one change to do this year, that is all we ask for starters: Stop Counting Family members of EB applicants against each year's EB quota.

I guarantee you, this change only will solve all our problems. Simple as that!!!!

At March 17, 2010 at 3:52:00 PM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Dear Alejandro:

It is great that you have grown to be an honest and successful person inspite of harsh circumstances as there was hope. Lot of potential immigrants in queue had false hopes of getting a green card while some were hopeless. I am extremely glad USCIS released pending numbers which makes things transparent. Now there is NO hope of green card for anyone who is not foolish enough to wait 10+ years for GC to settle in life. I am making my preparations to move out once my H1B expires. But the only thing which bothers me even as I leave is the policy forcing H4 spouses to stay at home with work. This is so Taliban like and so unAmerican. Please cancel the concept of H4 or allow H4 holders to work to be fair to fairer sex who can be subjected to career loss and loss of dignity for being on H4. It is hard to imagine that a family can survive on single income in the early stages of career.

At March 17, 2010 at 3:52:00 PM EDT , Blogger Dino said...

Here are some of my facts:

1) I have been a legal resident of this country for 12 years.

2) I have been working for the same employee and have passed up many career opportunities.

3) I want to travel overseas for vacation but the thought of having to go through POEs scares me for i know that i can be denied entry.

4) I am unable to bring myself to purchase a new home or car as i fear of the uncertainty of my my future.

My question is when can i see my Greencard? In my lifetime?

At March 17, 2010 at 3:55:00 PM EDT , Blogger xlr82sas said...

I want to thank the USCIS and in particular Mr Neufeld for clarifying existing H1b regulations.

About a month ago I provided a reference for a friend and US citizen. I gave him a walk on water reference, however he did not get the job. The job went to a H1b immigrant working for a very large consulting firm located in another low wage state.

I am not a racist, if fact I find H1b immigrants from China and India are very competitive with US workers. In fact when China and India combined have about ten times the population of the US, it is not supprising that best Indian and Chinese IT workers are equivalent or better than the best US workers. It is a statistical fact and has to do with the number of workers in the tail of a normal distribution.

I do think, in these economic times, giving US citizens a far shot at jobs makes sense.

At March 17, 2010 at 4:06:00 PM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Does democracy include the right to work ? In the modern world shouldn't everyone be allowed to work ? There is a class of immigrants on H4B status who are barred from working. A similar class of L2 immigrants are allowed to work. This has created a situation that has forced many spouses to become dependent on their H1b Spouse. I would urge the rule to be amended to allow H4b immigrants to work. Nobody is incapable of earning but many are forced to live like this. This does lead to rifts in marriage.

Glad to read your journey of the american dream was realized and hope future immigrants are granted the fundamental right to work.

At March 17, 2010 at 4:09:00 PM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Honorable Director Mayorkas,

The first paragraph of your blog is very touching and conveys a lot. I have come to this country 10 years ago in a non-immigrant knowledge worker's visa from India. The country has given me lot of things and I did my best to give back to the community I live in. There are quite a few people like me from different countries who came here for better life like you and your family, hardworking, law abiding honest folk who made United States of America their home. Many immigrants like me love the country, I had been to many countries and have not experienced as good treatment as United States of America treated me. Of the disappointments, immigration tops my small list of disappointments. Historically immigrants made significant contributions to innovation and improvement to quality of life in this country making it a super power a cornerstone of democracy, equality and justice. Unfortunately same immigrant community of knowledge workers today are restricted by law in making similar contributions. As you must be very aware of the fact that we employment based visa holders aspiring to become immigrants cannot move to different career path or start an enterprise of our own till we get the Green Card (for which we have been waiting for nearly a decade). This limits our contribution to our own and collective growth of the community we live in. Talking about economic stimulus, I know most of the immigrants will buy a house and a new car and all the related things which go with them once we know we are settled (read get the green card). Taking a very conservative estimate of 50 % of people waiting for green card think the same way, you have the numbers and you can see the amount of money that will be infused into the economy, potential jobs created. Most of the EB category people make a decent living and like you said know the value of a cent (not to talk about dollars) and we have savings that can go a long way. Instead if the current trend of retrogression continues, more and more people lose faith and the available funds will move to their respective home countries to build a future for themselves in a place they know they have stability. With other countries opening their doors to immigrants like EU Blue card program, there are options but human beings are creatures of habit, they would not like to move unless prodded to move.

This is an appeal to you to convert a lose-lose situation to a win-win situation. You have the power. All it takes is a little step from your side which will be a giant leap to all the community of people living under retrogression. Please empower us to make a change and contribute to the country.

At March 17, 2010 at 4:37:00 PM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Here are my facts:

1. Legal resident of US since 2001.

2. I know who is governor, senator etc of US, hardly know the same for India - that's because of time I spent in this country.

3. My kids are US citizen.

4. In 2002, employed filed green card for me. At that time, based on job description, job was filed in EB3. USCIS expects me to hold same job in 2010 too. Surprisingly, this is the very same department runs under Honorable President Mr. Obama who became president in 10 years of start of political career. USCIS doesn't think other could grow too!

5. Even today, we are scared of starting business due to uncertainty.

If availability of visa number is only restriction stopping USCIS to issue us a green card, I suggest it should at least give application approval - unlimited advance parole and EAD till green card is allocated and make us free from employer specific slavery. This way the uncertainty will go away and could take promotion or start own business.

My 2 cents.

At March 17, 2010 at 4:38:00 PM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Dear Sir:

Your comments are very refreshing. I hope that your agency is able to live up to them.

It has come to light recently that some service center employees are subject to performance reviews that consider issuance of RFEs as a favorable factor. It would be an understatement to say that there is already a general belief that the agency issues far too many boiler plate and needless RFEs. In fact, there are routine reports of RFEs that request documents submitted with the original application or petition that appear to have entirely escaped the notice of the person issuing the RFE. One way to cut down on waste (including all the storage space necessary to store the responses to those redundant RFEs), would be to review the RFE practice and procedure.

Another concern I have is with the inconsistency and unpredictability of E-2 adjudications. Investors who have come to this country, invested their money, and created small businesses are in a state of neart panic every two years when it comes time to renew their status. This is because the standards at the CSC appear to change with the wind (though usually in a more rather than less restrictive direction). The current E-2 policy does not create an incentive for foreign investment and small business creation because there is (or at least appears to be) way too much risk in the process. Who wants to invest a fed hundred thousnad dollars starting a business here if they are nto relatively sure that they will be able to stay here and run their investment? In the current economy, it would appear that CIS has a duty to apply the statutes in a way that encourage foreign investment.

Another concern I have is with I-601 waivers. Although neither the regulations nor the precedent decisions have changed, the relevant hardship standards seem to have become more difficult to meet since the administration changed. It is simply much harder to obtain a waiver, and the hardship requirements and documentation requirements appear to have increased wihtout notice. Actually, changing standards without corresponding changes in regulations or case law seems to be a consistent problem. Those of us in the immigration bar feel like we are shooting at a moving target in many types of cases. Changing the rules of the game halfway through without informing people of the new rules is just plain unfair. This is especially so with waivers, where the cases already involve "extreme hardship".

My second to last comment is with the London field office. They are unreceptive to any communication there, and even a congressional inquiry only resulted in the comment that an individual could check their case status on line. I understand that there is a large case load, however, your agency is dealing with people's lives every time it makes a decision. Given the stakes, every office should have contact information listed and should be willing and able to communicate in a timely fashion with those whose matters are before it.

My final comment is that I've noticed a large disconnect between the people making and distributing the agency's policies and the way the officers on the ground are implementing those policies. I have even been in public meetings where a district director was completely unaware of a regular practice of the front line officers. Polices do not operate in a vacuum. It is important to evaluate how policies are being implemented and the consequences- intended or otherwise- that result. Sharing as many policies with the public is one way of monitoring the results, but I'm sure there are others. While overall changes in the system are up to Congress, the agency has much room to improve within its existing bounds. I am hopeful that your tenure will be guided by the following three driving principles- fairness, consistency, and transparency.

Thank you

At March 17, 2010 at 5:16:00 PM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

I speak english
I pay my tax
I am legally present in US since 2004.
When will I get my green card?

At March 17, 2010 at 5:21:00 PM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

PLease help!!! We are dying here...Been waiting for 10 years and no end in sight for this backlog. Now DOS is saying thier not aware of the Distric offices demands hence, halting the visa movement further. Can anybody in your office do a more responsible Job? Your dealing with people lives here.

At March 17, 2010 at 5:21:00 PM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Director of Department that effect Millions of Life,

Thanks for opening a Forum where we can vent out our views and request.

1. USA is the leading country in IT and around 200-300K+ Employment based IT professional are waiting to get Green card could build a Robust IT System free of charge that will help so many lives here. It is a very simple Application and Status based system which takes years and years of time even to issue RFE when it should be done either electronically Automatically if E-FILE is introduced as a compulsion for every application. RFE and response to the same cause huge time and effort for both sides ( USCIS and Applicant).

2. Department of State and USCIS runs in PARALLEL so the lines never meet and in the middle innocent applicants are waiting for years. Atleast as a organization you could have issue pre-485 stage & Issue EAD and AP for approved I-140 so they could apply for Change of Status when DOS release the Dates. That will ease lot of pressure and frustration of applicants.

3. Green card number should be allocated on FIFO ( First in First out ) logic. Currently the Logic is 100% based on Luck of the Applicant's Application which if current and currently under review by officer then he gets Green Card as you have designed the system like rather the number allocation should be automatic on every month start for the pre-adjucated cases. Every Priority date got Date&Time , which far easy for any IT resource to arrange them in queue.
There should be Fair policy not Luck policy.

4 There should also be a section where someone could provide feedback for the recent Infopass / RFE Experience where Applicants can provide information or grievance for improvement.

Overall we have lot of faith and trust on you. Please do the needful at the earliest.

At March 17, 2010 at 5:34:00 PM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Dear Director Mayorkas,

I would like to present a few things that can be implemented that will eliminate the Employment Based Immigration back-log and also generate a stream of revenue at USCIS for 5 yrs.

Visa #s lost previously should be recovered and future waste should be avoided.

The following cases should automatically be eligible for a I-485 Approval and they will help a lot of EB cases irrespective of EB2 or EB3 or country of chargeability.

1. Person residing in US legally for 6 yrs and not yet applied for AOS.
2. People in AOS status for 4+ years.
3. Bachelors Degree from US university and 3+ years in AOS.
4. Masters Degree from a US university and 2+ years in AOS.

In all the EB2/EB3 cases above if the GC is not issued within the time limit, any time over the 4/3/2 yr should be counted towards Citizenship eligibility.

5. Dependent visa should not be counted from the Visa number allocation.

6. There should not be any restriction for switching jobs after AOS and No RFE's either.

We have unlimited talent in the EB2/EB3 category and its being wasted as we are all waiting for GC and can not grow with the rest of the country. Our careers are stagnant, people with less experience and coming to US on L1 visa are issued GC in 3-4 months because their employers have initiated their immigration process in EB1, even though they contributed fairly little to the country/economy as compared with people who are in line for 8+ years.

Decades of accumulated experience of the EB2/EB3 professionals can be harnessed to create new jobs and ultimately help the economy in the long run.

Last but not the least though alternatively.
If 1-4 items above can not be implemented for Employment based immigrants then create a separate pool of 50K Visa numbers every fiscal for 5 years that can be assigned to applicants who are in line for GC
i. for 3+ years
ii. Willing to pay premium processing fee of about $2000.
iii. This will bring a $100M revenue every year to USCIS
iv. Create more jobs and
v. Most important clear the back-logs.
Again this pool should not have any EB2/EB3 or country of chargeability restrictions and should be available on First Come First Serve basis.

The premium processing applicants should be allowed to leave their sponsored employer immediately after GC is approved. This usually allows for the immigrations to opt for better benefits and better pay packages indirectly meaning higher taxes paid to IRS.

At March 17, 2010 at 5:37:00 PM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

I am glad that USCIS has taken initiative to make things transparent to the public. There is lot of progress in terms of automation and customer service.
You have online portal to track applications.

It would be great if we can see some progress in the process itself.

I have EB3 PD of Jan 2007 and I am 43 yrs old. As per the current rate I will get my GC in 2025 by which I will be 58 years old.

There are thousands of applicants waiting in line like me. It would really help all of us if you can speed up the process by changing the way you allocate VISAs, to accomodate current needs.

thank you

At March 17, 2010 at 5:59:00 PM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

I thank USCIS for having an open forum to allow public to express their views especially who are trying to migrate to this country.

I request USCIS to at least allow filing of I-765 (EAD) and Advance Parole by making them current for India and China. Here are some of the constraints I am in right now due to long pending Green Card. I am sure there are several others in this same boat.

1. I am not able to accept a good offer with a competency that is different from what is mentioned in the LCA. Due to this I had to decline 2 offers in the past 5 years. And I have one active now which I may have to decline.

2. I have offers with the same competencies that offered me more than what I am earning now with a better designation/title. I had to decline them because, a) I am afraid of getting visa extensions rejected due to title change b) And I had to restart my Green Card process from the beginning. Due to this reason I had to decline 3 offers in past 5 years.

3. I have a good credit history and I have enough savings to buy a home. But I have a fear when will my currently employer ask me (force me) to get into another project which may require a relocation to another city or state. And I have to sacrifice my better living and better management of wealth due to Green Card. Alternatively I am getting the investments grown and managed in home country.
4. I do not have a million dollars to qualify for EB5, but I am sure if I get a Green Card I have ideas that I can patent, start a company independently and create products that can create jobs for few US Citizens.

So can any one still believe that US is still a land of opportunity? Is USCIS helping America to keep up with this promise?

At March 17, 2010 at 6:04:00 PM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Dear Mr. Mayorkas,

Thanks a lot for your kind words and understanding. This is really first time I heard this type of kind words from anybody from USCIS which made me literally emotional which is because so far I recieved only harsh RFEs and letters from USCIS. EB category (specially EB1/2/3) is for skilled workers who are highly educated and really contributing to the US economy. I would say EB people are really asset to this country. We came here legally and regularly paying tax and play by each and every rule (as small as filing AR-11 forms of address change). We are waiting for 10+ years and looking at current backlog of EB-3, probably we will have to wait another 10+ years. When I think of this, my all hopes are breaking and it drives me in sadness and dark. Mr. President mentioned in his state of union address about "people who play by rule" but uncertaintly in the deep dark tunnel of wait is literally killing us. I feel like that to have EB people waiting for 10+ years is really agaist humanity. We cannot plan our life here in US during this uncertain time of wait. We feel like our life and future is blocked. Reading your words, I feel like you are the person who can really understand our concerns and can do something concrete to resolve this huge EB backlogue. Thank you very much.

God bless America.

At March 17, 2010 at 7:28:00 PM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Dear Mr. Mayorkas,

The current Employment Based (EB) Permanent Residence visa (Green card) has various sub categories like EB1, EB2, EB3 etc. The maximum number of visa allocated for Employment based permanent residence is 140,000 per year. Since the dependents children are also included in this maximum limit of 140,000 per year, some of the children are waiting for more than nine years for their green card.

My request is you to modify the distribution of visa for the dependent children under the EB category.

I strongly believe it is not correct to allocate the visa to children based on their parent's (primary beneficiary) visa category. All children (irrespective of their parent’s visa category) should be treated equal and the visa to children should be awarded only based on their country of origin and the date of their visa filing (priority date).

Also when allocated visa numbers in one EB category is not used, as per the current law, it is distributed to the next category. The USCIS should allocate the dependent portion of the visa to children who are waiting most and not based on their parent's visa category.

In my case, a friend of mine and his kids applied for Green card under the Employment based EB1 category and got their Green card 5 years back while my child is still waiting for 7 years, since we fall under EB3 category. My child is asking why she needs to wait while her friend got her green card (and citizenship) already?

This country does not need one particular category applicant’s children more than the other. I request the USCIS to follow the great American values and treat all kids waiting for green card under the EB category equally.

Thanks & Regards.

At March 17, 2010 at 8:23:00 PM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Please fix the EB employment base greencard system. I reside in US from 2001, hold an MS degree, paid taxes from last 6 years, and own a house. The uncertainity of the GC process has induced a lot of stress in my life. Being a mercy of the employer, I regret the fact that I bought a house. Atleast provide us with EAD's...

At March 17, 2010 at 9:00:00 PM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Dear Alejandro Mayorkas,

I second the opinions of the majority. I have been in this country since 2004 legally (with a H-1 visa).

I am also stuck in the EB backlog with an approved I-140 petition, but unable to make any career moves since that would mean restarting the green-card "process". My wife is unable to work on her H4 despite having a college degree and being eminently qualified to work in her field. We have put our lives on hold while we await - for eternity perhaps - for the magical thing that I call the "freedom card".

Someone else commented that they know more about the US than their home country. How true! Nearly six years in this country, I have totally assimilated into this country, follow the local baseball/football/basketball clubs, acquired a taste for the local cuisine, have a pretty decent circle of American friends, and most importantly, I have learnt about the glorious history of the country and the ideals based on which it was founded (which other country lives by the motto "life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness"?). In spirit, if not in reality, I consider myself an American.

I have lived by the rules.

My question, philosophically, would be, how long would it take to consider people like me not "aliens" but equal stakeholders in this country? Ultimately, what is citizenship? A love of the country and its culture? I have that in abundance. A knowledge of its history and political structure? Ditto. What would it take for this country's citizens to recognize that I am not really that different from any of them - other than my passport of course!

I understand how the political process works and how it is so difficult to bring about change on this extremely contentious subject, but isn't there a way to provide some relief to people like me?

I realize that with unemployment around 10%, there is very little sympathy for people like me - didn't I steal your job? - but do realize we have put down roots here, our children attend schools here and they don't know any other place than this, we have a circle of friends whose company we enjoy...we did not come here yesterday.

Please see our side of the story and even though we have no voice in the political system, I urge you to consider this on a humanitarian level and do something! We ask for no government hand-outs, all we ask for is freedom to change our jobs, and freedom to continue living in the country in case we lose our jobs (we will support ourselves until we find the next one).

I hope that you get to read this message and it provokes you into taking some action.

Thank you.

At March 17, 2010 at 9:38:00 PM EDT , Anonymous XYZ said...

Please allow India & China EB2 & EB3 applicants whose I-140 is approved to atleast file I-485, so that we can get EAD & AP. Looking at the current EB3 movement for India, we need this badly. I am EB3 India with PD Dec. 2003, Labor & I-140 approved way back in 2006-2007 but unfortunately my I-485 was not accepted due to USCIS during July 07 fiasco & my application returned back by USCIS stationg I-140 is attached with the application. I myself put my I-140 approval in the package but somehow mailroom @ TSC overlooked it & returned the package the whole application package. Since than I requested USCIS to accept my application but all the time they are your PD is not current. Its not only me who is suffering my whole family & many other legal immigrants who came here legally & paying taxes are suffering due to this. I request you & all the law-makers to atleast consider allowing applicant to file I-485 whose I-140 is approved & waiting since years to file I-485. Its really rediculous that who ever gets a chance to file their I485 during July-Aug. 2007 fiasco got their EAD/AP & the others who missed that are suffering even though their PD are so old.

At March 17, 2010 at 9:40:00 PM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Please do something to remove the backlog in emloyment based visa. If USCIS can allow Employment Based Applicants to apply even for EAD that would be really greatful.

At March 17, 2010 at 10:15:00 PM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Dear, Mr. Mayorkas

Please remove spouse and children from the visa quota thats holding back priority dates. If the children and the spouse are exempted from annual visa quota....backlogs will reduce significantly!


At March 18, 2010 at 12:43:00 AM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

We want to see results.Don't give us false hopes.

At March 18, 2010 at 5:13:00 AM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hello Sir,

I am also an applicant in this long line of Legal immigrants waiting to get a Green Card based on Employment.

I would sincerely request you to look into the following and take appropriate action - Proposals for Agency Action to Ameliorate the Priority Dates Crisis by Gary Endelman and Cyrus D. Mehta..

Have a good day.

At March 18, 2010 at 9:06:00 AM EDT , Anonymous On behalf of Cyrus Mehta said...

Director Mayorkas,

Please consider these simple requests:

1. Offer premium I-485 processing for fees around $10,000. This will allow hiring of extra personnel to deal with the load, and will bring in significant revenue to USCIS. The number of EB3 applicants who would gladly pay $10,000 to end their wait is for sure greater than 10,000 so we are talking about $100M in revenue.

2. Please count only the principal beneficiaries of I-140 petitions. This will greatly reduce the number of EB cases.

Details in the open letter by attorney Cyrus Mehta at

Third, the authors propose that we should count only the principal beneficiaries of I-140 or I-130 petitions and not family members under the employment or family-based quotas. There is nothing in INA § 203(d) that explicitly provides authority for family members to be counted under the preference quotas. While a derivative is “entitled to the same status, and the same order of consideration” as the principal, nothing requires that family members also be given numbers. This ambiguity in INA § 203(d) provides the Executive with an opportunity to exclude family members against the employment or family quotas, which could potentially resolve the priority date crisis significantly.

At March 18, 2010 at 9:44:00 AM EDT , Blogger USCIS Blog Team said...

Thank you again for your comments. We are working every day to respond to your comments both here and with new posts. We currently have a couple posts in the works - so stay tuned.

Also - please remember that we have a comment policy that prevents us from posting comments that include personal contact or case information. If you notice that your comment has not been accepted for that reason, please re-submit it without personal email addresses, case numbers, phone numbers, etc.


At March 18, 2010 at 10:31:00 AM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Sir, please allow dependents to file I-485 without PD, I Have EAD but can not use because I am Married after filing I-485, now my wife can not apply I-485.

Please change rules, we get some hope ..


At March 18, 2010 at 10:56:00 AM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Dear Mr. Mayorkas,

If you solve the EB Priority Date crisis you will make history!!!!

You will be in people's hearts and minds forever.

At March 18, 2010 at 11:20:00 AM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hello Respectable Director Mayorkas,

Please listen to my long journey to Greencard but I will try to keep it very short:

1. I am born in India, moved to Canada and did my Mater Of Engineering degree from University Of Toronto with A-grade.

2. I moved to USA more than 12 years ago. I first worked at GM for about 2.5 years and now working as Senior Engineer at another multinational company for last 10 years.

3. My green card was applied in 2004 in EB3 category. My I-485 was applied in July 2007.

4. My elder son is in 9th grade in I.B. World school. He has received ACEDEMIC EXCELLENCE AWARDS from US PRESIDENT many times so far. Because I am waiting for my greencard in EB3-India category, so he will have to pay foreign student fees for his University in couple of years time. He needs a separate EAD to work even though he has been here for over 12 years i.e. almost all his life.

5. My second child is 10 years.

6. I am already eligible for social security benefits here as I have legally worked and paid my taxes for almost 13 years here.

7. I do NOT have Greencard. None of my family members have greencards. We are all Canadian citizens.

8. Every day is very stressful and full of uncertainties with the green card.

At teh current rate, I think it will take another 20 years for us to get green cards.

It feels like slavery and mental torture.



Have a nice day.


God Bless USA

At March 18, 2010 at 11:29:00 AM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Dear Sir,

After repeated calls and e-mail correpondances, I finally learned that my I-485 application is on hold due to INA 212(A)(3)(B).

I am deeply hurt and saddened by the decission. My kids and I, came to USA in 2005 following an approved relative petition to join my husband who is in Asylum since 2002.

Prior to coming to United States, I have been a government employee served for over 16 years. Never been involved in such organizatios or never been a member of any party or group. My husband was a victim who came here to escape insecurities and fear.

I trust in the American Justice and human right system. That is why I left everything and came here to start life again after the age of 40. You allowed us to come and settle here . Why are we denied our immigration benefit now?

Please fix INA 212(A)(3)(B). Hundreds of thousands people are suffering. We came here legally follwoing all rules and regulations of this country.

At March 18, 2010 at 11:46:00 AM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Dear Sir,

No case is bigger than the Material Support bar INA 212(A)(3)(B) which makes hundreds of thousands of refugess/Asylees to suffer.

We are not terrorists. We are not even aware of how we fall in that category in the first place. We came here trusting the American democracy and Justice.

Please sir, review this case. Don't let us live in frustration and fear. We came here to escape harassment and imprisonment. We can't face another torture here. It is unbearable.

At March 18, 2010 at 12:03:00 PM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Alejandro Mayorkas,

I am not a Lawyer to understand USCIS legal framework, but i have read in many law firm forums that, USCIS has legal power and with in that legal framework, could recollect all the unused green card visa's and give a relief for Employment Based green card blockage.

Also, it would be better if USCIS can remove cap on per country limit. Isn't this so much controversial to prevent talented people in participating to build this nation stronger. The current policy prevent immigrants from China / India to become permanent residency.

Unless some change is not done, Chinese and Indians will not get their employment based green card for another 20 years. I am sure it will affect only USA's future.

At March 18, 2010 at 1:28:00 PM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Respected sir ,
Many people are suffering from priority date crisis .Please, kindly allow us to file I-485 application.we are experiencing lot of stress in our daily life.we want to buy new home. But we are not sure about getting green card.there are so many people are waiting for green card so that they can buy a new home. If you allow us to file I-485 , in the present economic crisis atleast 10% new homes will be sold. Now everybody sending their salaries to home country. if you give them green card, they can invest their money in housing market by purchasing new homes. Please help us.Thanking you sir.

At March 18, 2010 at 1:32:00 PM EDT , Anonymous Peter Jones said...

Dear Mr. Mayorkas,

Like many, I am one of the people who has been waiting for my Green Card for over 8 years after living in the US for 11 years.

I understand though we cannot change the visa numbers at one stroke or at least without the the blessings of the congress, there are quite a lot of provisions as to how the visa numbers are applied.

I agree I may not know of all the reservations you might have with reference to this study.

I find more than the delay, the ability to retain the same job profile over a period of 10 years is the prime cause of concern. No individual in reality does the same job over and over. This goes against all studies in Organizational Behavior that it is the human tendency to want to grow and flourish. If you take that factor out, motivation is lost and why would US need an ill-motivated workforce via immigration?

It would be great if something similar to a publicly announced "Pre-adjudicated" status could be declared. And Naturalization could begin 5 years from such a status.

The greed card delay only creates a badly motivated immigrant workforce which generally tends to go on a preservation-mode rather than contribution-mode.

I am sure, your office and you are evaluating all scenarios.

We keep hoping for the best.

With warms regards - Peter

At March 18, 2010 at 2:08:00 PM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Employment-Based I-485 Adjudication Manual

1. Keep I-485 pending as longer as possible so that we can cash in on EAD and AP applications;

2. If the applicant makes a service request, issue a response indicating "Please allow 60 days..." even though the review of 5-page I-485 takes only less than 5 minutes;

3. If the applicant makes a service request again, issue another response indicating "Please allow 6 months..."

4. If the applicant yet makes another service request, issue a response indicating "...the processing of your case has been delayed indefinitely since we need to perform additional review..."

5. If the applicant is relentless and makes another request, repeat step# 4.

6. Repeat step#5 until the following two events occur, whichever occurs first:

1.) The applicant reaches retirement age, checks into a nursing home with Alzheimer diseas and thus completely forgets that he or she has an I-485 pending - Approve the I-485 on humanitarian ground;

2.) The applicant files Writ of Mandamus with a federal court - Approve the I-485 immediately.

At March 18, 2010 at 4:21:00 PM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

My wife loves me very much. She is on H4. She recently graduated her Bachelors Degree in Economic Studies. She is 25 years old. She is staying at home all day long. Her life is going down the drain.... What a waste of human life!!!! Why don;t you allow H4 people to work like L visa dependants. No one really lobbied you enough????

At March 18, 2010 at 4:21:00 PM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Dear Director,
Are you even reading any of the above folks comments, or is this a JOKE from USCIS. PLEASE REPLY TO ATLEAST ONE, THEN WE KNOW YOU ARE READING.......

I have bought my first home last year, my car, avg credit rating of 780, and have a decent contract position working with same employer for the past 6 years on H1B with approved I-140 3 years back, failed to file 485 in 2007, assuming it won't be very long. I have invested in a business opened by a US Citizen.... Running great, yearly revenue of $200,000 + and

Now my employer threatens me that i might have to move to a different project as they will be paying him MORE.... What do i do? IS LOYALTY IN THIS COUNTRY ONLY ONE WAY - NO COURTESY FROM EMPLOYER WHO WE WORKED FOR 5 YEARS -

last time I went home, visited my MOM & DAD 5 years back ----- Would you stay away from your parents for 5 years without seeing them... All this because of re-entry issues.



I know more about politics & policies in this country than my home country... I even forgot some of the celebrity names... Shame on me.

At March 18, 2010 at 4:23:00 PM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...


1. Issue the PRE-485 Stage and Allow Applicant to File EAD and AP.

2. Only count the Primary against the GC numbers , dependents should not be counted into the Annual Limits.

3. Issue Every month Approvals requested by USCIS (service center and regional offices)

4. Provide a tool for anyone to enter the Case number & know the expected time to get Green card.

5. Provide more transparent & feedback service.

At March 18, 2010 at 6:09:00 PM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

I am actually curious and would like to know why H4 visa holders are not allowed to work.

Would he american economy not be better off with them working? I believe if they are allowed to work they would be contributing positively to the economy.

The restriction on spouses and dependants of H1 visa holders makes me view the H1 visa as a selfish program that benefits the american economy more than the H1 visa holders and their dependants.

Programs should be designed in ways that would be mutally beneficial to all parties.

Even in other developed countries like England, their immigrant program is designed in such a way that the spouses of qualified immigrants can work

I look forward to reading from you.

At March 18, 2010 at 6:34:00 PM EDT , Blogger USCIS Blog Team said...

@ commenters concerned with green card wait times:

This is obviously a very important issue that strongly impacts people's lives - as the numerous comments posted so far on this subject bear out.

In case anyone missed it - we would like to point readers to a comment we posted on the previous blog entry. It specifically addresses the backlog and wait-time issues. Here's an excerpt:

Regarding the backlog, here is a little background: In July 2007, USCIS received a large number of Adjustment of Status applications (I-485) based on all categories being current on the July 2007 Visa Bulletin. This significant influx of I-485s filings created a much bigger backlog of employment-based applications, especially third preference, resulting in a regression of the visa priority dates.

USCIS has processd the vast majority of the visa regressed applications we've received, and we are waiting for visa availability for these applications - which is what causes the wait times. Simply put, the demand for these visas far outpaces the supply of visa numbers mandated Congress and authorized by the Immigration and Nationality Act each year.

Here are a couple of examples of backlogs and the numbers behind them:

- Currently there are 140,000 employment-based visa numbers annually, and this has been so since Congress enacted the program. Of this total, third preference gets 28.6%, plus any numbers not required by first and second preferences, not more then 10,000 of which goes to the "Other Workers" category.

- There are approximately 136,000 third preference adjustment of status applications pending at USCIS Service Centers, of which there are approximately 59,000 applications with India as the charge country. Section 202 of the Act prescribes that the per-country limit for preference immigrants is set at 7% of the total annual family-sponsored and employment-based preference limits, i.e., 25,620.

At March 18, 2010 at 6:39:00 PM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Why is the USCIS allowed to punish American citizens for trying to help their Mexican spouses do the right thing by getting the Visa instead of living in the shadows. Whe the spouse is not allowed to return to the US to their families, you are not punishing the alien, you are punishing the American citizen by forcing them into bankruptcy, homelessness, or welfare. And the whole idea is for the citizen to sponsor the alien so he/she does not wind up on government benefits. But without 2 incomes, the American citizen loses everything they have worked for several years. Where is the justice in keeping families apart just over a time frame or a waiver

At March 18, 2010 at 6:59:00 PM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

We agree that that there is per country limit in giving away the GC but PRE-485 and accepting applications like in July 2007 is always possible. Why can't you accept more applications by making it current? THis way everyone will get EAD and AP.

At March 18, 2010 at 8:27:00 PM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Dear USCIS team blog,

Thank you for anwering to our posts.

While you say that in July2007 USCIS recieved a large number of applications and that as a result created a huge backlog. I see the point you are trying to make that there is no legislation that would allow you to process more Eb cases, although USCIS would want to.

In the meantime please answer with a post what other things could USCIS do on its own, without DHS and Congress legislative relief. What other ideas can USCIS implement to ease the EB backlog? Maybe there is another project in the works, please give us some hope

Please respond so we know what to expect...

At March 18, 2010 at 8:33:00 PM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Yesterday, I raised a resonable question about the Allocation of EB dependent visa to children. That message does not show up; but I see whole bunch of messages that has nothing to do with the original post.

What is your selection criteria?

At March 18, 2010 at 10:31:00 PM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Dear Sir,

I would like to bring to your attention the subject of Material Support bar INA 212(a)(3)(b) which makes Hundred thaousands of Refugees/Asylles suffer.

You gave shelter to those people in time of presecution and torture, You allowed their families to join them. What is the purpose of denying living permit now? It just doesn't make sense.

When is going to end? The waitingis too frustrating. At leaset exclude spouses and families from this bar. We have no idea how you grouped us in this "Terrorist" group in the first place. We become a victim for the reason we dont have any clue about.

Please fix this bar. God and History will judge this injustice.

Thank you.

At March 18, 2010 at 10:37:00 PM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

It is so frustrating that employment based green card for India / China is almost halted.

I saw your response for per country limit. But, corporate doesn't see if they are from European or Asian, they need people with skills. I don't understand the fundamental classification of employment based green card if it is based on per country limit?. It clearly looks like USCIS is so racist in allocating green card based on country.

It looks like only crying baby gets attention, we are legally living in this country for nearly 7 years and some one more than 10 years waiting to get permanent residency. But, people who broke the laws and want to become citizens are getting more support from political front and can speak to President of USA. People in H1B simply do work, pay tax, and waiting for their dream to come true.

It is really frustrating with all these dead slower process and inefficient USCIS/DOS.

At March 18, 2010 at 11:22:00 PM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Like many other people, I am request this.

We understand the problems in processing I-485 due to Visa number retrogression. Atleast please allow us to file I-485, either give us EAD or allow us to maintain the visa status until a decision is taken on the case. Only problem with this long waiting process is Employer. Employers take this situation and refuse to give fair credit to the work.

In practical, staying with same employer just for permanent residence really affects the career path.

In case we find a good opportunity like in case of labor petition, we can switch job. That way, my quality of work will be increase, i will pay more
taxes, i will be more beneficial to the society.

Atlast in case if USCIS not willing to do anything in this, please be frank. We can try to go back to our own country, instead of wasting our career here.

Please help us !!!

At March 18, 2010 at 11:24:00 PM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Been waiting in line for the last 15 years, and cannot travel due to restrictions on my filling. Waiting for an apporoval to change status has come with hefty indirect fines. Both my wife's parents and my own parents have died in the last 15 years while we wait. Our two children have never had a chance and will never get to know their grandma or grand pa.We've worked hard gone to school and played stictly by the rules. taxes have been paid to the last penny not to mention the numerous renewal of EAD's.We are stuck and frustrated not to mention that we constantly worry weather we shall ever find any family members alive when we return home given the pace of EB# process. Please have some humanity for those of us waiting in line. Get rid of the fake marriages that see others on the first track. Do the right thing!

At March 18, 2010 at 11:34:00 PM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...


Please have mercy on me, and my family. Please get us out of this misery. Can you have some new Green card category for people who lived here legally for a certain period of time and collect a fee to issue a Green card I am ready to pay $50,000 to get out of this misery. Please give it a thought.

At March 18, 2010 at 11:39:00 PM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...


Why dont you please accept I485 for India and China as backlog is huge and people are dieing to live even after paying taxes to U.S govt since several years.
Every one knows GC programme designed years ago, everything has changed and foreign workes has played a key role progressing U.S technology and other industries but still GC proramme and per country limits has never modified according to practical situations.

Even you guys know personally, how hard it would be to face this tortue, why dont you please do something to accept atleast I485 for all Indian and Chineese.

At March 19, 2010 at 6:31:00 AM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Why is USCIS not using the unutilized visa numbers which were lost from 1992 to 2009. This will clear all backlog. After that process will not be overloaded. We can buy homes here after we get green cards. We are sure atleast 70 % of people waiting in line would buy homes and will start making investments.

At March 19, 2010 at 7:34:00 AM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

We can understand the Per country Quota & limits of uscis. If you allow AOS/485 application without the dates being curent will get you the idea of real backlog. Current backlog of 150K applications are mostly from the ones files on or before July 2007.

Do you have a system in place to Track approved 140's without a AOS filed?

At March 19, 2010 at 8:59:00 AM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

I've been waiting for my green card for 9 years. Can you speed up the process? I'm so tired of this waiting game!

At March 19, 2010 at 8:59:00 AM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...


One thing that you can easily change is to allow EB customers with pending I-485 to accept promotions.

If the initial I-140 is for an Engineer and the I-485 has been pending for 10 years - there is a very good chance that candidate has now gained enough expertise & experience to be an Engineering Manager and in some cases VP of Engineering.

How can we expect the economy to grow if we force the Top Talent to stay at a lower level and do a low level job?

At March 19, 2010 at 9:44:00 AM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

I See that USCIS responded to the Blog, We perfectly understand what your team replied to our questions...

Do you have any reason why your team has wasted 400K visas over the last 15 years, even though there were enough applicants waiting in line.

Please answer this question, this will solve majority of issues i believe. Why do you need to create a bill for re-using the old visa's? Is there in the constitution or law that says you cannot carry over the old visas?

Excuse me, but this is what i feel like (sorry if i am wrong) --- We(USCIS) are sorry, we were not able to do our job right first time, so please pass this bill so we can do our job right second time????

Per country limit is ONLY to make sure we are not ignoring smaller countries - it never said to restrict bigger countries................


At March 19, 2010 at 9:59:00 AM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...


I am not comparining, but just giving an example - readers don't take it personal...

We have 223 countries listed as of today.
For example - 28% of 140K is 39K something.

That is per category each country is allowed to get a MINIMUM OF 174 VISA's ---

VATICAN CITY has 800 citizens, PICTAM ISLANDS have 50 citizens... Let's say all 50 from pictam migrates here.. where are the rest of 124???? and 174 from next year???

A friend of mine from neighbor country doesn't even know how to code, i am here for 4 years and waiting in line and he applied last year - he already has his green card and he is now my immediate boss - what a shame -- good for you people -- you are gifting a green card based on per country rather than trying to absorb smart people.


At March 19, 2010 at 10:16:00 AM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Everyone knows that the demand is greater than the supply hence the backlog. But at least send accurate data on how many apps are pending / processing / at regional offices etc, so that DOS can move the dates more effectively and avoid a July07 fiasco. At least it will let the people in the queue know where we stand and determine how long of a wait it is. Based on this one can decide if it's worth the wait or not. It's not rocket science, stream line ur process, work toward efficiency. All that money spent on hiring more workers / new technology etc and the result is the same, we are still stuck in a queue... worst we don't know for sure where we stand!

At March 19, 2010 at 10:37:00 AM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

If we look at the happening in immigration reform bill blue print (published in Washington post), this country doesn't care / welcome who come properly, pay taxes, and really help to build stronger USA.

With the existing system, Indian has to wait at least 15 to 20 years to get his employment based green card.

If USCIS / DOS cannot determine how fast they can issue our green card, why are you accepting new application? Is this just for collecting fee from GC applicants?

You are also responsible for issuing H1B visa, why is that no country limit on H1B?

When Indians apply green card based on employment, we are not getting fair justice from USCIS / DOS.

At March 19, 2010 at 11:50:00 AM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

I agree with per country limit. India has 1 billion population. World population is 7 billion. 1 over 7 is 15%. Last year India got 25K visas will all the spillover. So 25000/140000 is 15%. It is fare. Thank you

At March 19, 2010 at 12:02:00 PM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Dear USCIS officer,
Thank you for your reply message.
Here is my question:

What are USCIS and DOS planning to do to eliminate the backlog? especially for the applicants holding an approved I-140,can't file a I-485,EAD,AP. My family and career are stuck here for 6 years already and can't see any hope yet so far.

At March 19, 2010 at 1:32:00 PM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Director Mayorkas,

First of all thank you for starting a direct line of communication with the immigration community, as this provides a forum for many people impacted by your agency to provide their feedback. It is greatly appreciated.

So many posters here have suggested ways to address the EB backlog issue, which mostly impacts applicants from India and China. I fervently hope that your blog team is more responsive to the many suggestions posted on this issue, instead of simply repeating the already well known reasons for the backlog.

I think most posters on this blog understand that the USCIS cannot by itself increase the EB visa numbers and provide relief to the large number of backlogged applicants, absent legislation from Congress. However, as some people have pointed out there appear to be certain actions that can be implemented at your agency level to atleast partly provide relief - such as allowing EB applicants with approved I-140s to file the I-485 even in the absence of visa number availability, so that eligible people can receive EADs, which allows easier job mobility than a H1B visa.

Attorney Cyrus D. Mehta's article on this issue is a great summary of what all can be done at the agency level. I hope that one of your next few posts has a response to this. Thanks.

At March 19, 2010 at 1:44:00 PM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Dear Mr. Mayorkas,

For the past 8 years I am observing the USCIS rule making process. Almost all the rules enacted by the USCIS Adminstration are of restrictive nature (by the way, I support that) and none of them provide any releif to the applicants waiting for Green card under the EB category.

Cannot you make a simple adminstrative change that helps the people waiting for Green card under Employment based category for 9 plus years? Atlease one?

I question the fairness of the whole employment based green card system. Applicants who took shortcuts in the visa process (even though it is legal) got their green card already. People like me who believe in doing the right thing are stuck. What is your answer for us?

I request you to take a couragious/compassionate action that helps people in EB backlog. I strongly believe that USCIS has powers to do that.

Thanks & Regards.

At March 19, 2010 at 3:10:00 PM EDT , Blogger USCIS Blog Team said...

Dear readers,

Because of the volume of comments we are receiving on I-485 employment-based visas and wait times - we are currently composing an entire blog entry that we plan to post early next week that we hope will address more of your questions and concerns. Please stay tuned for that.

At March 19, 2010 at 3:47:00 PM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Incredible work Blog Team. Its great to hear that there will be a seperate blog dedicated ti I-485. I hope the new blog would lead to a constructive exchange of ideas that would eventually bring relief to both the folks waiting for years (India/China EB2/3) in line and USICS blog team as well :).
Thanks much.

At March 19, 2010 at 4:18:00 PM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Thanks USCIS Blog Team-

Can your Blog Address the Following questions in straight words For ex.

Q. Can applicants be allowed to file I-485 , EAD and AP If there I-140 is approved irrespective of Visa Availability dates?
Ans: <<>>>

Q: Can USCIS remove the Per Country limit?
Ans: <>>

Q: Why to count dependents with Annual Visa count?
Ans: <>>

Q: Why cannot capture the Old Unused visa number , if legislation is required why don't USCIS Propose that?
Ans: <>>

Q: Why Don't USCIS publish total number of VISA Number consumed every month rather the waiting for DOS?
Ans: <>>

Q: Why are RFE request so vague?
Ans: <>>

Q: What are the new planned tools for Transparent USCIS System?
Ans: <>>

Q: Why USCIS Build the tool for Forecasting the time to get GC based on Priority date and rules?
Ans: <>>

At March 19, 2010 at 4:42:00 PM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Do you think we are looking for explainations from you? ... We are very small infront of USCIS.

I think Past is past..

We want a FAIR solution not explaination for what happened and how it happened..

At March 19, 2010 at 5:21:00 PM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

First of all Thanks for USCIS team to atleast (and atlast) hear from the Legal immigrant problems & issues...

Been in US legally for exactly 6 yrs (never went out of US, not even one day in these 6 yrs) still waiting to file I485 (EB2 with I140 approved) ... bought house, cars, everything ..., paid & paying taxes from the DAY 1 till date ... BUT FOR NO USE ... IF i lose my job ... within a day i will lose everything ...MY LEGAL STATUS , MY Life etc ...

Please think about this and atleast make people file their EAD & AP after I140 even though if the EB categories are not Current ...

At March 19, 2010 at 5:40:00 PM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Only one question



At March 19, 2010 at 9:53:00 PM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

EB3 India/China delays equals or let's say feels like:

1. Slavery, can't change jobs
2. Mental Torture, same/similar job requirements.
3. Discrimination, country quota limits.
4. Losing hair
5. Living in uncertainties
6. Living in constant fear of what if we lose job.
7. Death of one's career due to inability to change jobs, working for same employer forever, same/similar job requirements, etc. This is very tough and stressful condition on EB3 applicants.

PLEASE do something or we will just get old and die waiting for green card.

You don't know what we and our families are going thru every day.

We need your help.


Thank You very much.

At March 20, 2010 at 7:31:00 AM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Dear readers,

"[B]ecause of the volume of comments we are receiving on I-485 employment-based visas and wait times - we are currently composing an entire blog entry that we plan to post early next week that we hope will address more of your questions and concerns. Please stay tuned for that."

Do us a favor: Respond to at least three specific questions

Is USCIS a discriminatory organization i.e., disparages Indians and Chinese?

Does USCIS promote slavery by making one (mostly Indians and Chinese) work for 5-10 years in same position mostly in same organization? The term "slavery" is commonly used in many of the posts

Does USCIS support the policy of torture, more specifically mental torture? Again, the term "torture" is used frequently in these posts.

Honestly, we do not need a blog but a formal USCIS Memo.

At March 20, 2010 at 4:49:00 PM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

At March 20, 2010 at 4:59:00 PM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

There is something I do not understand. If my I-140 was approved why It still shows up as Initial Review when I check my status on your website?
Besides, my I-485 was submitted the same date, I have your Notice where states that you received it on October 2007, how long will I have to wait for my GC?
I think that all of us that are on this situation feel like prisoners. You limit our actions and all we are doing is working for this Nation. Do something, please, we want to be free.

At March 21, 2010 at 12:14:00 AM EDT , Blogger sathvik said...

we have been staying legally since 1999 paying taxes and maintaining the status.We applied Green card in 2003.When will USCIS grant us Green card ??
our 2 kids are US citizens and we are really worried .EB-3 India not even moving since 3 years Please HELP US .


At March 21, 2010 at 9:35:00 AM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

USCIS Blog...

To be fair to you, posting of comments is much appreciated. It augurs well that in future there may be hope...

At March 21, 2010 at 11:55:00 PM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

pls, can somebody help talk to the houston benefi center staff to work mon case files instead of dragging their feet and giving false excuses to backlog even when there is really no back log on cases that are over two and a half years. pls, let them make decisions and stop treating people unfairly.

At March 22, 2010 at 12:08:00 AM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

pls grant freedem to everybody in bondage with the uscis. life is unbearable and it looks like your staff are enjoying the tortue they make people go through all in the name of scrutiny.

At March 22, 2010 at 12:23:00 PM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Please report the number of pending I-485s you have at the District (Field) Offices. Also, please post an updated I-485 inventory report.

At March 22, 2010 at 1:05:00 PM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Dear Mr. Mayorkas,

I understand the constraints that USCIS have: USCIS hands are tied, Congressional intent etc.

But I have one simple question for you. Given all the constraints you have, can you make a signle adminstrative change that helps the people who are waiting for 10 years in EB based visa? Did you have at least one meeting in USCIS, with a single point agenda: "How to help the people waiting for GC for 10 years who are stuck in the same job"?

I am 100% sure, that the USCIS can address the problem, with its powers.

The question is will USCIS do that?

Thanks & Regards,

At March 22, 2010 at 1:57:00 PM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Dear Director Mayorkas,

Can you please explain why the agency
was processing EB3 applications filed
in May 2005 during FY 2009 but the agency
is processing EB3 applications filed in
December, 2002 in March, 2010?

On the USCIS calendar, does Year 2005
come BEFORE Year 2002? USCIS is a truly
amazing agency.

At March 22, 2010 at 2:13:00 PM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Mayor thanks for creating a forum for us to directly reach out to you. Can you please work to help the EB2 and EB3 category folks. People have been waiting for upto 10 years (expecially folks from India and China) to get green card. It spoils their career growth prospects and impacts their families too. God Bless!

At March 22, 2010 at 4:27:00 PM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Employment based green card category has been heavily backlogged. People are waiting for 10 years.

These are the sufferings that we are going through every day:
1. Cannot change jobs
2. Cannot get promotions at work.
3. Mental Torture, same/similar job requirements.
4. Living in uncertainties
5. Living in constant fear of what if we lose job.
6. Cannot get unemployment benefits even though we pay for unemployment insurance
7. Cannot buy house
8. Cannot start new business
9. Cannot make international travel at will. we need to pay for Advance parole every time.

Please help us by doing a adminstrative fix, whatever it is.

At March 22, 2010 at 4:40:00 PM EDT , Blogger USCIS Blog Team said...

@ I-485 commenters:

Just wanted to point to the recently posted I-485 Employment-Based Inventory Statistics for March 8, 2010.

At March 22, 2010 at 5:30:00 PM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

if 140000 per year, per quarter roughly 35000,The net inventory change is 209,441-198,307 = 11,134, we see some new I-485 filings.Are there 20000+ new filings in this quarter? is it possible that less 15000 visas issues in this quarter? It would be great if we know the number of visas issued per quarter as well , just to guage accelaration.

At March 23, 2010 at 11:43:00 AM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

We look forward to your USCIS Blog on the Visa Backlog.

We ask you to please address the backlog at the USCIS District Offices.

At March 23, 2010 at 12:22:00 PM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Visa Blog Team-

Why the team cannot update the information from all the district offices and Consulates in the calculation. It is mere numbers which are available in computer systems. Why still keep the secret?

Still you could not provide the Q&A updated for reduction in number of cases for EB2 and EB3 in 2006,2007 even though they never become current for INDIA. Are you approving / Rejecting them? The reduction number are 3 Digit Figure.

At March 23, 2010 at 12:27:00 PM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...


Why Don't USCIS Focus on Certain Category like Eb1 and EB2 clear the complete backlog this year and if possible something in EB3 that will clear the path for Eb3 backlog clearance when 2011 quota opens. Some Strategy is really needed.


You could also work on Eb2 and Eb3 pending application based on FIFO basis and clear them Also start accepting new applications for INDIA and CHINA. That is way to get new application and Fees from pending APPROVED I-140 Applicants.

Why delay in ACCEPTING the application when your department know that they could get Fees from the applicant in this FISCAL crisis.

At March 23, 2010 at 3:17:00 PM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Thanks for planning a response on the I-485 question. I hope that you'll consider EB3 ROW issue as well. Based on the data you posted, there are 77000 non-India applications in the process.

And many of those are China, which is the second largest EB-3 group. So, given that the ROW volume is less than 77,000, and given that the bulk of the available green cards are by law going to ROW, why is the Eb3 ROW backlog so long? (I realise that India backlog is longer, but this is small consolation for the ROW folks like me who are looking at a 6-8 year wait- knowing someone else has to wait 12-20 years doesn't make me feel any better).

There is something that is disconnected between the statutory availability of Eb3 ROW visas and the movement of the priority dates for these visas. In your post, please address this issue, along with the other important issues that folks have raised.

At March 23, 2010 at 6:08:00 PM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Further on the EB3 ROW question. Based on the data released on Mar. 8, and the previous release of data (december), USCIS has reduced the backlog of EB3 ROW cases by roughly 2700 cases. This is one quarter of the year, and USCIS has reduced the backlog by a very small proportion of the legally available visa numbers for this category.

Will EB3 ROW visa numbers be wasted? Will EB3 ROW cases continue to languish for 8+years? (not as long as India or China, but a substantial amount of time, and even more troubling because the current laws should allow a more aggressive reduction of backlog)

As others have noted, we have our lives on hold in substantial ways. Many of us have to remain in the job that sponsored us 5+ years ago, regardless of whether it is currently the best use of our talents. We are limited in terms of being able to move, buy homes, participate in civic activities, and integrate into American society fully.

I understand that part of the problem is the statute as written, and I know that the statute is limiting opportunities in even more of a profound way for people from India and China. But in the case of ROW, the statute allows a more speedy processing of the backlog than we are seeing. USCIS has in the past simply wasted visa numbers. Each visa number wasted represents a life frozen in amber, another year or more of uncertainty and distress, another family that cannot put down roots and begin to live the american dream.

I hope that your upcoming post about the green card backlog will address specificaly the backlog in EB3 ROW, which is not consistent with the usage numbers and/or the statute. Why is USCIS not meeting the State department goal (January visa bulletin) of moving EB3 ROW to mid 2005?

At March 24, 2010 at 11:17:00 AM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Has the USCIS made any progress in compiling the number of applications at the District Offices?

We ask you to provide this information broken down by
(1) country of charge
(2) preference classification
(3) priority date

At March 24, 2010 at 12:04:00 PM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Consider these two people:

Joe is from Singapore. He came to US on F1 visa and went to US college. After graduation he started working for a big American company. He was sponsored for EB3. Now Joe 6 years later is stuck in EB3 Row backlog. Joe is in US 12 years now.

Mary is from Egypt. She came to US two years ago. She has a master degree from Iran that is no higher quality than Joe's bachelor degree from US. She was sponsored for Eb2. She got her green card last week.

Joe and Mary work for the same company in the same department. Their job duties are not significantly different to explain Joe's multi year wait in backlog.
Above example shows how EB system is unfair. Mary in no way is better than Joe.

At March 24, 2010 at 12:29:00 PM EDT , Anonymous AndyChan said...

USCIS site has the following data on their site;

I-485 - National Employment based pending applications at end of 03/2010= 198,307;

I-485 - National Employment based pre adjudicated cases at end of Jan'2010= 207,352

Is there a way for us to find out if our case has been pre adjudicated & simply waiting for a visa number? That will be a great moral help.

At March 24, 2010 at 1:02:00 PM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

One need to start worrying, if this happens, it's not very good for USCIS...

Also, data collection for is great idea - wait and watch for the results posted to senators.

At March 24, 2010 at 2:41:00 PM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

At March 19, 2010 3:10:00 PM EDT , Blogger USCIS Blog Team said...

Dear readers,

Because of the volume of comments we are receiving on I-485 employment-based visas and wait times - we are currently composing an entire blog entry that we plan to post early next week that we hope will address more of your questions and concerns. Please stay tuned for that.

Please advise when can we expect to see the USCIS blog post addressing the severe EB3 India/China backlog issues?

We are really looking forward to your leadership and help as we are very depressed waiting so many years in EB3 category with life full of uncertainities, fear, and sadness all the time, every single day.

Every morning we wake up thinking a miracle will happen.....please show us the miracle. My family is very stressed.....we need freedom to move, freedom to buy property, and freedom to live American Dream.



At March 24, 2010 at 2:54:00 PM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

@ USCIS Blog Team:

Just wanted to say that the recently posted I-485 EB Inventory statistics for Match 8, 2010 is junk as it does not have the pending applications from district offices & overseas cousulated. Without these demand, the method proposed there to calculate the number of people before me is just a junk number.

At March 24, 2010 at 6:03:00 PM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Dear USCIS director,

I am waiting for Employment based Green card for the past 8 years.

So far we paid nearly $5000 towards EAD and AP renewals. The good thing is now the EAD's are issued every two years.

My request is, can you please make the EAD and AP with ten years validity?


At March 24, 2010 at 11:11:00 PM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Isn't it already later than "early next week"? Do we have an ETA for the post about employer sponsored green card backlog?

At March 25, 2010 at 1:10:00 AM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

This immigration process is a living hell. It does not fit a great country like the United States. It is unfair in so many ways. There are alot of frustrations being blogged from employment based applicants, but there are other categories as well. Life Act applicants are having to wait close to ten years before they get there GC. You see all these fake marraiges being approved and fast tracked, meanwhile good faith applicants trying to do things the right way being sidelined for decades.

At March 25, 2010 at 9:44:00 AM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

USCIS Blog team,

What happened? You said you you were going to post an entry on the 485 employment based wait times, early this week. Well the week is almost over!

At March 25, 2010 at 1:02:00 PM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

I know what will be the answer from USCIS for the Employment based Green card backlog: "We cannot do anything. It is all Congressional intent.(But let us not talk about the thousands of adminstrative rule making we did already)".

At March 25, 2010 at 1:23:00 PM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hello USCIS Director,

This post is about the Employment Based (EB) Green card backlog issue.

I applied my EB green card under EB3 category. My category is heavily backlogged and I would not get my green card in my life time.

So I am planning to file another petition under EB2 (if it is legally possible). It will cost around $10000 to file another petition.

I am ready to give that money to USCIS. Can you upgrade my application from EB3 to EB2 automatically?

Since USCIS is in financial trouble and is looking for ways to generate revenue, why not convert EB3 with 5 yeards wait as EB2 if it is ok with the company that the applicant works for.

This can be done with the USCIS adminstrative rule making process.

There is no congressional law needed here. There is no visa increase here. It is a simple procedure change.

If you really want to help the people waiting for EB3 visa for 10 years, please do this.

At March 25, 2010 at 5:11:00 PM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Dear Sir/Madam,

This has reference to the inordinate delay in my green card processing. I came to the United States in the year 2001 on H1 Visa and was sponsored by my employer “XYZ”. My employer who sponsored my green card also filed my labor certification in RIR -EB2 and had a priority date of June 2002.Labor got approved in 2007 under Backlog-log Reduction system. I had to write to the Governor to get my PD of the RIR-labor-Cert. I was pushed by the system to the level of writing to the Governor. Unfortunately my employer went out of business and I took up employment with another company “ABC” in the year 2004.My new employer transferred my H1B visa and filed for my labor certification in EB3 as a POLICY. It has been an unduly long and anguishing wait for 8 long years now since 2002.

I left my country with the hope of settling down for good in this land of opportunities. But I have to say with a lot of anguish and pain that the unforeseen delay in the green card processing time has had severe toll on my life. Despite being in the country for 10 years I am still unsettled. Due to the lack of my permanent residency, I have had to compromise on my entrepreneurial dreams and settle on a job with a low salary, my kids have to pay a higher college tuition fee because and cannot fulfill their dreams of taking up a professional course of their choice. We have to pay Full Term fees of $24,000/year and I have taken student loans for 4 years which will amount to $85,000 and NOT eligible to apply in some Prime Medical Schools with EAD alone.Not Eligible for Federal funds for college tuition fees.In another 2 years time my 2nd child would undergo the same !!!!. Imagine the expenses.

I have dreams to start a small business enterprise of my known but my hands are tied because I am on EAD and have no clear visibility on the getting my green card.

I would appreciate it very much if you could let me know if I can start a business of my own on EAD or alternatively if there is any provision to transfer my priority date to June 2002 ( my first filing date) instead of Oct 2005 and if this can expedite the green card processing time. Please do proive due consideration on this request

I would be very grateful if you address our concerns and dilemmas.

Sincerely yours,

At March 26, 2010 at 5:12:00 AM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Director Mayorkas,
With all due respect, what is the explanation for my situation, as follows:
My I-130 petition for minor child has a priority date of July 2008 and, to our dismay, was approved Feb 2010 by the CSC. However, the CSC Processing Time posting for that period indicated that CSC was processing F2A I-130 petitions with Jan 2007 priority date. Why did CSC process and approve my I-130 1.5 years ahead which would directly cause beneficiary to age out thereby delaying her GC by at least another 10 years. Is the USCIS system for determining which families will benefit from the CSPA age determination formula based on luck? Or, as many previous posters have said, based on the personal whims or level of competence of those who are in charge of implementation? But, sir, as you yourself said, these are people's lives they are playing God with! I know for sure you will get to the bottom of this and find a real solution. God Bless You.

At March 26, 2010 at 4:36:00 PM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Dear Mr. Mayorkas,

Thank you for your message of hope. We look forward to seeing the words translated into action.

Few suggestions [from an US citizen, who scored 99.99 percentile in a worldwide test, which is a measure of one's IQ... The test is given to bachelors or higher degree candidates. Hence 99.99% of the test takers, all of which were in the top of their class in their respective countries and fields of study scored less than me. i.e. God has given me the gift of high IQ. Another evidence of which is that my IQ point is within 20 points of Einstein [tested by MENSA]. So, whereas I am no Einstein, I am close. Hence hopefully you will pay attention to what I am going to propose and do everything in your power to implement them].

Also, this comes not only from the standpoint of a high IQ person, but even more importantly from the ethical and moral obligations of a person who has reached the top and would like to send the elevator back down, for other folks. Towards that end you and me and many others share the same responsibility and we should ACT.

Here are my suggestions:

1. Eliminate the visa quota restrictions [i.e. PD baloney] for people who are in the line for 10 years or longer. Allow these people to file on-line, with a fee of $1000. Give them and their derivatives a combined, EAD-Travel permit card within 60 days of filing. Adjudicate their applications in one year or less.

2. Follow a FIFO policy [First in First out]

3. Eliminate per country quota, and the different category of EB(s). With all due respect Sir, this is 2010 AD. We should stop being so myopic.

4. Please adopt a Point system. Each year of legal stay in the country is 1 point. Advance degree, 5 points. US citizen relative 5 points. Anyone who scores 10 points should be allowed to apply for AOS, with a fee of $1000, called ten-point fee. Please process the applications within one year [EAD/Travel card within 60 days].

5. If needed, please FREEZE the visa lottery system for now.

You and me and all people with ethical and moral values and principles should work towards putting an end to this archaic policy which has resulted in discrimination and intellectual slavery. America is a land of immigrants and firmly opposes slavery and inequality and taxation without representation.

I must admit, from reading the blogs I am getting the uncomfortable feeling that this awful policy and indifference towards a vast group of people [honest, talented, hardworking, tax paying and law abiding] and their families might be because they are from Asia and happen to have brown skin color. Soon we might have a class action law suit in our hands. And, who can blame them. Just imagine standing in line for years... even decades and being discriminated against in so many ways. I am surprised that there hasn't been a law suit already. We should ACT without letting this injustice continue any longer.

I will look forward to your response and action. PLEASE No more "Old wine in a new bottle". PLEASE SIMPLIFY and adopt the above policies without any further delay and free these vast majority of people from misery and uncertainty. We opened our doors to them with promises. We are benefiting from their hard work and talents and their tax dollars. We cannot and SHOULD NOT turn our backs and ignore them by sticking our heads in sand.




At March 26, 2010 at 4:55:00 PM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Director Mayorkas,

Sir I have a similar situation as well. I came on H4 Visa back in 2002. My wifes employer filed for green card for her in 2003. Her labor, 140, EAD and AP was aproved in 2007.Her PD is OCT. 2003. During this process my own mother became US Citizan and filed 130 under(Married Son/Daughter)catagory. That was even aproved in 2005 and waiting for Visa number tobe availalbe.

My question is do we have any hope to get green card on any of the files. So that we can come out of this mess of backlog. Our life is completly on hold. Can't buy car, home or any business on this uncertain situation. We have family owned hotel business and my family can't make any decission to buy another property so that we can settle dawn.
Do you have any provision for cases like me.

God Bless you.

At March 26, 2010 at 10:57:00 PM EDT , Blogger NubianPrincess said...

If anyone in USCIS is actually paying attention to all these responses, I have a few simple questions with regards to the employment based backlog.

1) How hard will it be to only count the primary 485 applicant instead of deducting a visa for each family member?

2) Can USCIS reclaim unused numbers from prior years to clear the backlog?

3) Why cant the law change to increase the quota? The same congress that mandated 140,000 also mandated 50,000 diversity visas to be given away by lottery.
At some point 140,000 was probably more than was needed but the current backlog needs to be reduced.

4) Can visas from the 50,000 diversity visa lottery quota be used to adjust status for people who are already here, paying taxes and waiting in line?

This is the only country in the world where someone can reside legally for over 14 years, pay taxes, follow the process and still remain an alien. Like many people I am stuck in the employment based backlog.
Many of us have spent our prime years here, it is only fair that the system acknowledge our contribution by granting us residency/citizenship.

Whoever reads this, please run this by the powers that be, please clear the backlog of employment based immigrants. Use the diversity visa quota for 2 years and the backlog will be cleared.
Stop treating us like criminals (travelling with advanced parole and arriving in Miami airport is awful)

It will also be to the advantage of USCIS and in the interest of overall integrity of the organization to reduce the backlog of applications to process.
thanks for your time.

At March 27, 2010 at 10:43:00 PM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

How many people suffering for the same reason... It is so sad. I am included. We came here looking for a future specially for our kids and what do we give them.... NOTHING!!!! Our hands are tied. We cannot look for better jobs. We came here looking for the freedom you enact, however, we feel like prisoners. Please, we did all we were supposed to do, we pay taxes, we live under your laws, what do you do for us??? Give us the freedom we deserve.

At March 29, 2010 at 10:03:00 AM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

What a blame game... USCIS claims DOS has to release the numbers and Vice versa DOS saying they are not sure how many apps are pending in state offices...

The one thing one need to understand,

POLITICIANS: First thing they think, can i get this guy's vote if i help him.... Ooops!!! I can't so why do i care about him?

IMMIGRATION LAWYERS: If i fight for him, how can i collect more money for RFE's, EAD's Renewals, MTR'S .... Noooo!, So why i should i help this community, let them sit under my clientile number.

USCIS: We are getting hefty fees collect which touches our lives... But can we do something about it?? Why would we, we are safe, our job is safe because of them. Do we care if they loose their job... NOOOO. So let them deal with their own problem.

DOS: Not even in my scope for now, let USCIS deal with it.


At March 29, 2010 at 1:33:00 PM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Dear USCIS team,

Here is my idea to generate continous stream of revenue for USCIS. Please make the priority data current for 1 month or 15 days. Then all the people with approved I-140 (employment based permenant residence visa) will file for I485 AOS. Once they filed AOS, they need to file for EAD and AP. On the average a family spends $1000 for EAD or AP per year. And if we have atleast 100,000 families waiting, it will generate a steady revenue of 100 million per year. This also helps people with approved I-140. Please think about it. Thanks.

At March 29, 2010 at 2:18:00 PM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Attention: Alejandro Mayorkas, Director USCIS
Thank you for providing a platform where immigrants and future citizens of America can voice their opinions, complaints, frustrations, constructive criticisms and valuable suggestions to make the system work better and in a fair and objective manner.

As you must be aware there is a tremendous backlog of certain categories of AOS. I did not know the enormity of the problem, until I started reading the blogs. It got me thinking and wondering why is the situation like this and what would be the best way to solve it and untangle this MESS. Towards that end I gratefully acknowledge the thoughts and opinions of many bloggers before me. Now, let us look at the situation at hand.

It is painfully apparent that the major portion of the people waiting in line happens to be from Asia [more specifically people from China and India]. Why is it so? Obviously US employers could not find skilled workers within the country, and had to look for them elsewhere. China and India being a country of large population with a high percentage of Scientific and technically skilled talented, hardworking people; majority of the shortage was filled by them. Employers are happy [jobs are getting done!] employees were happy... they are in a wonderful country... one of the best in the world and on track to permanent residency. I-140 petitions are filed and approved and now comes the waiting period.

How bad can that be right? Wrong...! Here is the tragic reality. Even though thousands of these highly skilled professionals have been allowed to come in and do the jobs for which there aren't adequate no. of US employees, no provision has been made to help them assimilate into the country where they are contributing so much in terms of talents, hard work and tax dollars. Why are there no fair and square provisions, you ask? Simple... it is because these people don't vote [yet!] hence Congress doesn't care. Our Congress isn't really known for far sight, so that is not surprising.

But then why doesn't USCIS care... after all they are existing because of the immigrants, and they should provide adequate service for the immigrants, right? Wrong again! It so happens, USCIS gains at the cost of thousands of lives kept at limbo. How you ask? From the thousands of dollars in application fees from EAD and APs.
So, how about the employers? They are gaining so much from the employees. Shouldn't they push for better legislation and policies? Now, here comes the other major part of the equation. By hanging the LC and petition over them, they have control on the lives of these hapless employees. They can pay whatever they want [within range of course, but at the lower scale of pay], make these people work hard, give unfair performance reviews [the crook and bigot supervisors does this, and there are quite a few of them]. These US employers have very deep pockets and wield a lot of power in the Congress [from the backstage!]. If they really wanted, this mess would not have been created in the first place.

Now, how about the employees... why don't they try to do something? How can we expect people whose hands are tied to do something? I am sure they want their freedom [from intellectual slavery and tyranny of the system] but their options are very limited. Yes, I know what you are about to say now. Their hands are tied, how about their feet? They can walk back to their country. [But before you ask that], Ask this to your conscience: Is that fair? Is that right? You will hear a big and resounding NO. It is NOT RIGHT for any country and its citizens [and more so for a country like US, whose motto is fairness and equality]to take advantage of people who are at a disadvantage.

So, let's clear this mess of backlog and let these people realize their American dream, which has been promised to them explicitly or implicitly.

At March 29, 2010 at 2:24:00 PM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Message continued for Director, Mayorkas

How to resolve the backlog mess?

1. Abolish the archaic system, which has been in existence for numerous years with very little improvements. This is 2010. Let us get our heads out of the sand and face the reality.

2. Let us first clear the mess in our hands before offering visas by "Diversity lottery" [more on that on a separate posting, since I smell a fish here ;-)]. FREEZE the lottery system for now. Make those 50,000 visas available for the backlog cases. Add another 50,000 to it.

3. Immediately start processing the applications of people who are waiting in line for 10 years or more [irrespective of country of origin. We cannot have and eat our cake too. We cannot bring in qualified people from certain countries and keep them waiting in line, while others gets ahead... this is not the American way]. Adopt FIFO [First In First Out]. Start processing the cases which are waiting the longest]. To hire more people to do the job, add a $1000 fees. Win-win situation. Revenues for USCIS, Job for the unemployed, Freedom for the enslaved.

4. One visa for the primary beneficiaries. The derivatives should be included in that ONE visa.
5.To retain valuable talents [let's face it, we do have a shortage of that here] adopt a POINT SYSTEM.
One point for each year of legal stay.
Five points for an advanced degree from US
Five points if the applicant has US citizen relative [we Americans believe in family unity, right?]. Then if an applicant has Ten points, let him/her pay a special ten point fee of $1000, and be allowed to apply for AOS [Green card].
6. And, last but not the least. Abolish all the EAD, AP baloney [except for a two year EAD for Practical training]. Introduce a YELLOW card, which should be given when a person is eligible for AOS and applies for it under the FIFO or TEN POINT System, while their application is being adjudicated. The YELLOW CARD [granted after a fee of $1000 is paid and eligibility criteria are met. Processing must be done in 60 days or less] will work as a work authorization and travel permit.

Our URGENT REQUEST to Director Alejandro Mayorkas, Can we do that and break free from this juggernaut?

Please respond and ACT soon!

Thank you and God bless!

At March 29, 2010 at 6:09:00 PM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

the most used phrase on this blog is tortue, pain and backlog. Dear Director, kindly please, in the name of God talk to your staff and colleagues to work on the case files in each department. the only reason you think there is a baglog is because somepeople are not doing their jobs atall. for instance, my file have been pending since 3 years and recently i called only to be told the file is sitting on a cabinet and would now be pulled and looked into. does that really show that anybody is working any case file of the staff are jusy cruel and lazy. sometimes, i wonder how these people sleep at night and expect peace to be theirs when they make life very uncomfortable and unbearable to others. especially the houston office staff(s), who for no reason are just kill joy. please, know you are dealing with the lives of people and we still pray to the most high God, who answers the prayers of the immigration afflicted. please God, deliver us from this tortue and sadness inflicted on us by your the immigration staff. Director, pls intervene.

At March 29, 2010 at 6:17:00 PM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

the things happening in the immigration offices against people who have applied for green card only goes to show how terrible people can be. the staff alleges backlog, but is it really backlog or sheer wickedness. man's inhumanity to man. God deliver us all from this suffering.

At March 29, 2010 at 9:00:00 PM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

This is your response to these avalanche of comments from the people who are waiting for 10 years for Employment based Green card visa.

"Dear readers,

Because of the volume of comments we are receiving on I-485 employment-based visas and wait times - we are currently composing an entire blog entry that we plan to post early next week that we hope will address more of your questions and concerns. Please stay tuned for that.."

One whole week passed and still we do not see any replies. Please respond.

Also we do not want a reply from you that says "we cannot do anything... "

All we wanted to know is within your powers how you can solve this problem. We were all approved and we are waiting for more than two recessions.

We are looking for Hope and Change from you.


At March 29, 2010 at 9:51:00 PM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Attn: Mr. Alejandro Mayorkas, Director USCIS

May I suggest a few steps to streamline the process and assist the future citizens of this country we are proudly part of.

1.Please freeze the lottery system for now. Make the 50,000 visas and an additional 50,000 visas available to process applicants who have been here 10 years or longer. The additional 100,000 visas should take care of the priority date mess.

2.For folks who are here for less than ten years but more than five year, let them be given an interim YELLOW card until they are eligible to apply for GC.

3.We Americans hate to stand in queue for long. Just imagine standing in a queue for ten years or more. Terrible, isn't it?

4.Please respond to the points raised by the people on this blog, once a day. Or, if that's not possible, then every Monday, Wednesday & Friday. If that is not possible either then every Tuesday and Thursday. Or, at the least every Friday.

Mr. Mayorkas take the right step and ease the pain and suffering of a vast group of talented, hardworking and tax paying, law abiding folks.

Thank you!

At March 29, 2010 at 9:56:00 PM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Here is a win-win situation:

Yellow card through EB 6


1. Legal stay in US for at least 5 years

2. Invest $250,000 towards~

a) The purchase and updating of a foreclosed or short sale home.
b) In a failing business
c) Opening a health care facility

3. The $250,000 can be invested as a combination in any of the three categories. For example X amount for (a), Y for (b) and Z for (c). X+Y+Z = $250,000. If X is $250,000 then Y and Z can be zero. If X + Y = $250,000 then Z can be zero. If X + Z is $250,000 then Y can be zero. [i.e. the Investment can be made in either one of the three categories or a combination there of]

4. No quota for EB6 visas.

5. The application can be filed by paying a $1000 [YELLOW CARD fee] and meeting the eligibility criteria. The YELLOW CARD should be processed in 60 days or less. The investment of $250,000 should be made in two years or less. At least the first half [$125,000] should be invested in the first year [or held in escrow].

Mr Mayorkas, what sayest thou?

At March 30, 2010 at 9:26:00 AM EDT , Blogger USCIS Blog Team said...

@ Commenters asking about H-4:

Current DHS regulations prevent H-4 visa holders from working in the United States. In response to your comments, however, USCIS is now reviewing the merits of allowing certain H-4 visa holders to work in the United States. However, any change would require the publication of a rule in the Federal Register amending current regulations.

We also wanted to point out that an H-4 nonimmigrant is not prohibited from changing his or her nonimmigrant status to another visa classification that would permit employment such as the H-2B or H-1B nonimmigrant classifications.

At March 30, 2010 at 1:01:00 PM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...


Thank you for considering working rights for H4. I don;t want to overburden you with personal stuff other than the law, but you should know that in the past many young couples with wifes on H4 ended up in a divorce, simply because the could not live together full lives. It is not feasible from a marriage point of view to keep the wife on H4 at home for cooking. OK, there are other ways, one can study on H4, yes, one can change to F1 or H1B, but how long can one study on H4 ? if the primary applicant is stuck in the backlog for 10 years. F1 and H1B are other alternatives but what is the purpose of that marriage if wife has to go work in other city just to be on H1 status. How long can she be on F1? Are F1 and H1B visa designed for spouses in the US, no they are not. H4 is the visa for spouses. You should allow at least part time employment on H4, say 20 hours a week.

At March 30, 2010 at 2:40:00 PM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Mr. Alejandro Mayorkas, Director USCIS.

Dear Sir,

Please implement the "Yellow card" policy [as outlined in a previous post] and solve the mess once for all.

Please do not play with thousands and thousands of lives in limbo.

"Where there is a will, there is a way".

Are you willing to do the right thing?

Please do the needful by "Publication of a rule in the Federal Register amending current regulations".

We are ready to help. Please let us know if you need any help.

Regards and God bless!

At March 30, 2010 at 3:59:00 PM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...


Please consider this scenario:

My Wife is in H4. She wants to go to master degree in US University. She was granted masters assistantship. She cannot accept the assistanship on H4 because she cannot get paid. She has to go on F1. On F1 she does not qualify for instate tuition. Could you please make our life easier and allow H4 dependants to work in US colleges, at least there and no other places. Thanks you.

At March 30, 2010 at 6:51:00 PM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

I would just like to remind people that are quick to suggest fee increases. As we have seen, fee increases does not necessarily lead to effective ouput. Not everybody has deep pockets, especially when they are already in a tough situation. I for one wont mind some "reasonable" fee increases if I am seeing convincing progress.

At March 31, 2010 at 9:52:00 AM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Federal Register amending current regulations: Where do we see such changes for "GC backlog reductions"based on the suggestions made by so many.

Are there any such plans in the pipelines?

At March 31, 2010 at 12:55:00 PM EDT , Anonymous Eva said...

Re:@ Commenters asking about H-4:

We know that an H4 visa holder can change its status to H1B or H2, the problem is, not every company is sponsoring those visas, much less after the recession, you can see the significant drop on H1B petitions between 2008 and 2009. Please let an H4 visa holder work!

At April 1, 2010 at 1:12:00 PM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

When will the EB2 & Eb3 backlog be cleared and make them "Current".

At April 1, 2010 at 4:57:00 PM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Dear Mr. Director,

Below are your own words.
"As we open our arms to those who rightfully see our nation as a beacon of hope and opportunity, so too must we as an agency open our doors and be transparent to those with an interest in our mission. We will not shrink from criticism but instead work hard not to deserve it; we will recognize our failures and use them as instructive steps to future success; and, we will build upon our achievements to become the agency of which our nation can be most proud. You deserve this, and so do my colleagues."

And we hope your really mean it. But no one seem to be care of our enxiety and frustration. Our lives are on hold. We have been treated like educated sleves ever since we came to this country and now after spending all these years of hard work in the middle of a age to start a new life with family is not a joke. So if you realy mean your words you have said in your statement than please do the right thing within the law allows you to do. please free us from this EB2-EB3 Backlog. It is not our fault at all. It is your departments incompetance that has given us these hardship. We certainly don't deserve this. We contributed a lot to the "Land of Opertunity". And we will continue to do so.

God Bless you sir. God Bless USCIS and DOS. And God Bless America.

Family Member of EB3 applicant wiating since last 7 years for our turn to come.

At April 1, 2010 at 6:10:00 PM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

From the various posts on the blog it seems the best solution would be an "interim green card" [YELLOW card]. Lot of lives are stuck in the red light of backlog, created because of lack of foresight, adequate planning, fairness and competency. It is inhumane and un-American to keep these lives in limbo.

Hence, please follow the point criteria towards granting them freedom from the bottle neck. The amendment got posted but not the original idea. Hence here it is again:

1. One point for each year of legal stay.

2. Five points for advance US degree

3. Five points for US/PR relative [parent/child/sibling/spouse]

4. Five points for investing $250,000 towards~
a) Purchase and renovation of a foreclosed/short sale home.
b) Investment in an US business
c) Investment in a Health-care facility

5. Ten points for investing $1000,000 or $500,000 [in designated area].

Anyone having Ten points, should be allowed to apply for an interim green card [Yellow card] by paying a fee of $1000 [Primary applicant only].

Y-card applications to be made on-line and fees paid by credit card/automatic debit from bank. Supporting documents to be sent to one centralized location only. Biometrics and photos will be captured at the regional centers.

Please process the Y-cards in 60 days or less. Initial validity of the card will be for two years. If still not eligible for GC after two years, renew the cards each year with a $100 renewal fee [principal applicant only and not the derivatives].

Implement this and you will be known as a dynamic and visionary leader. USCIS will have marked increase in revenue, you can hire more staff, US economy will benefit and Americans and future Americans will thank you!

At April 1, 2010 at 6:46:00 PM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

@USCIS Blog Team:

Please do consider giving a work permit for H-4 visa holders. Even if we cannot work full time, atleast allow us to work part time, or even start our own Indian music or Dance schools, Home tuitions etc.

We are completely dependent on our spouses financially. The only way to keep ourselves occupied is - by volunteering in libraries, hospitals etc, going to local universities and colleges and going for some hobby classes.

Many of us don't know the situation in H-4 is so bad when we get married. We come here with a lot of hopes and dreams to live happily with our life partner, but realise that we become completely dependent on them. Everytime I buy clothes or anything for myself, I feel bad to ask my spouse for money.

We would love to work and contribute to the economy of the US. We would like to buy a home and start our family. Please do consider our request.

At April 2, 2010 at 4:12:00 PM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Dear Director and USCIS Staff:

Regarding the backlog of EB3/EB2 categories, I put it in a very simple way.

In American way of thinking, we as Americans hate being in queue any where whether it is a bank, customer services, amuzement parks etc. We do everything to eliminate the wait time and we strive to reduce the wait time to zero. We say sorry every time whenever one has to wait due to our mistake and inefficiency.

Now what a hipocracy that we do least care to reduce the wait time for talented people who are playing by rules, paying taxes, and contributing to the economy of America and willing to make America as their home.

Forget about current law and all the excuses, and please give a careful thought on this. Ask your soul, if this is justifiable? You will get the answer. Wheather to do something to solve it or not is another thing. But, you will get the TRUE answer.

Mr. Director, we will highly appreciate if you show the courage to help us and in turn help America to fix the beaurocratic practice.

God bless America!

At April 6, 2010 at 10:57:00 PM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Dear Director,
As Americans we hate to be in in queue whether it is in Banks, Federal offices, post offices, customer services etc. We apologize by our heart to the people whom we kept waiting in queue. We really mean to eleminate queue everywhere as part of our American way of thinking. If that is the case, I am wondering why we are keeping EB folks in extremely long waiting queue even though these guys are playing by rules, paying taxes, and contributing to our economy? Most of EB folks are waiting for 10 years or so. Is this fair? Sometimes I think of hypocracy in the government system and due to this constantly neglacting EB backlog.

Sir, USCIS may say that it is DoS who is responsible for visa numbers etc etc. But, can USCIS get read of responsibility while EB people are paying fees to USCIS and they are customer of USCIS. With this fact, don't you think that it is humble responsibility of USCIS to coordinate with DoS and White House to solve the issue of Backlog? Pushing the ball in DoS's court will not help. EB peoples are having genuin concerns that they poured in the blog over last few weeks. The words speak. Can you neglact any more? Hope you will seriously think about it and help these guys and in turn help America.

God bless America!

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At April 9, 2010 at 2:28:00 PM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Is any one looking into the "Material Support Bar"?
I see there are loud voices about EB cases. But, what about those poor Asylees/Refugees who are suffering indefinately in the name of "Terrorist"? How insulting and Humilating ?
We may not have computer and Internet access like the EB professionals to shout over the web. But, our heart is bleeding. We are in a deep sorrow by the injustice USCIS and DHS is committing on us.

Please do something. Hundereds of thousands are suffering for the reason they don't know.

Hoping, someone responsible will read and respnd.

At April 9, 2010 at 3:25:00 PM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Dear Director,
Let me tell you a true story as you shared us your experience with your great uncles.Please have patience to read.

There was this person I know back in my country. His Dad died when he is 2 yeras old and his mother remarried when he is 4. He grow up with his Step dad and step brothers and Sisters without knowing he has no blood relationship with the kids who is growing up under the same roof.

His mom also gave birth to couple of boys and girls so he got half sisters and brothers as well. Still, he has no clue about his step dad. He considers him as his natural father and all the children in that home as his own real brothers and sisters.
Time goes fast and the Father (His step Dad) Died when the boy is 17 years old. He was grief stricken as he loved him very much. Finally, when the will revealed to the family, When he learned the truth, when he realized that he lived all this years under false pretense,... When he finally learned that he doesn't belong to the group... He went absolutely crazy. He had been a talented and bright student. Immediately after this incident, he withdraw from school, he refused to speak to anyone,and totally gave up on life. He became homeless and still wandering around.

I am afraid Sir, This is what will happen to our kids. They grow up here taking themselves as an American, enjoying the school and loving this country. When they finally found out that they are not Citizens and they are not even permanent resident,.. can you imagine the damage and the consequences? Do you have any idea how it is heart breaking?

There are Hundred thousands of kids which their residence permit is on hold for the crime they didn't commit. What does a child know about "Terrorist"? What does a kid has to do with the "Material Support Bar"? Nothing.. absolutely nothing.. Even their parents have no clue how the grouping is done.

Sir, When will this end? We have been waiting and waiting.. the kids are now heading to college in the very near future. When is your office going to discuss this issue? is there any actions taken to resolve this injustice? Why don't you release the kids and the spouses case at least? what is the point making the kids suffer for the reason they can not understand?

Sir, Please act. Please listen to the voice of the poor Refugees/Asylees who are suffering double way.

At April 10, 2010 at 3:56:00 PM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Dear Mr. Mayorkas,

Just like you, I am happy and proud to be the citizen of one of the best countries in the world. However I am dismayed that your agency is no where near one of the best [let alone in the world] in the country.

Hundreds of thousands of visas lost, while hundreds of thousands lives are held hostage is a testimony to the indifference, incompetence and negligence of your agency.

Please do the needful to transform your agency from one of the worst to one of the best in the country.

Thank you.

At April 13, 2010 at 1:51:00 PM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Is there anyone who can answer what is being done to the "material Support bar"? Can anybody see how many people are suffering for the crime they never thought even for a fraction of a second?

Please listen to us. We are refugees and asylees who came here to seek protection. We lived here for years abiding every law and regulations. How in God's name you are labelling "Terrorist'? It is very painful and we are slowly dying. There is nobody to ask, Just wait and wait and wait.... What is worse than waiting indefinately for unknown reason?
We are morally crippled. We can not compete and get professional jobs as most jobs require a green card. above all, we can not explain this to our kids.

Please review this case. Please don't make us suffer any longer. We've suffered long enough. Remember, we came a long way. We've crossed a lot of hardships in our path of life.

God Bless America.

At April 16, 2010 at 12:00:00 AM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Dear Mr. Mayorkas

Can you please, please, please extend the NWIRP VS. USCIS settlement's application period?

At April 16, 2010 at 1:04:00 PM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Dear Director,

As You stated it very well. Please help us to realize the promise of democracy. You know what a journey we made and the challenges it involved.

Again, I am quoting from your own statement. Let the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services make the journey possible for US.

We are suffering for years under the yoke of "Material Support Bar". We have nothing to do with those cases. We are poor refugeees and Asylum seeekers who came to realize the Dream of the Land of Opportunity. We are here because we were pushed to the limit in our own country. denying anyone a residence permit after living for years is like hitting him with double sword.

Please release our Green card. Let us fully realize the true Democracy and freedom. Allow us to use our full potential. above all,let us lead the remaining of our life without fear and suspicion.

At April 18, 2010 at 12:08:00 PM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Dear Director,
This is my humble request,
Here I am waiting for my immigration visa for the last five years(EB3 ROW catagory).Because of this ,my life is on hold.Because of uncertainity about date becoming current I couldnot decide what to do next in my life.There is no other option than waiting for the visa number to be current.Isn't it pity holding job offer letter for the past five years but not getting chance to work.Sir, you should do something to reduce the never ending backlog,so that people who are waiting in this endless que whoselife is on hold like mine will at least take a breath of relief and can sleep without nightmare.
Sir,If it is at all possible donot count dependents in the EB visa number.
Thank you
Hope you will do something to solve this terrible backlog.

At April 20, 2010 at 4:36:00 PM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Pls participate in the "Review Policy Survey" before 29th April at

At April 20, 2010 at 5:52:00 PM EDT , Blogger SCNC said...

Dear All,
While we write about some of the bad experiences we have had with immigration procedures in this country, we should also give credit to Director Mayorkas. I feel he is absolutely creative and want to minimize the frustrations we have in this country by coming up with methods to listen to the people his offices serve. I would strongly advise that people writing in this blog should go ahead and feel out the recent survey. I think this will give Director Mayorkas a lead by knowing what issues need immediate attention. I have filed this survey and I have been talking to people who do not even know its out there to go and fill it out. its actually conducted by a third party which is a good thing. I also wish the USCIS could announce this using different methods(TV, radio in am 50 states) cause most of the people who have immigration issues in this country are not aware of this survey and the more people fill this out, a better picture you get when analyzing results. My appeal would be for the USCIS to extend the time frame. Another frustrating issue about the survey is that, two people cannot use the same computer to fill out the survey. I leave with my kid brother who has immigration issues which are different from mine and I can't speak for him cause he is mature enough to speak for him self. but the unfortunate thing is that, he cannot fill out the survey, cause it looks like, the system has been configure for one survey per family irrespective of how many people leave in a house hold. this might increase the error margin of the survey results by about 8%.

At April 20, 2010 at 5:55:00 PM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Please fix inadmissibility under section 2129a)3(b) of the INA. I know National Security is key to the United States people, but doing that at the detriment of innocent people is not good. Separating families and marriages is not good. The director needs to step up and have congress talk about this. The secretary of DHS also has to be brought into this.

At April 22, 2010 at 2:22:00 PM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Dear Mr. Mayorkas,

You have spoken well! You have talked the talk, now PLEASE WALK THE WALK!

Happy Earth Day to all!!

At April 30, 2010 at 6:40:00 PM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Sir, You are a brave man. Having this level of transparency on immigration matters is unheard of in agency's history. Your story about grand aunt from Cuba in Brooklyn is so touching. Sadly the situation has not changed much for the immigrant community since those days. It is still equally hopeless in 2010. Here are some observations:
- Your agency was called "INS" where "S" was referred to "SERVICE". That WAS and STILL IS the missing part of the whole program. Please get rid of the word "Alien". It is so "cold war era", "start trek" "space race" euphoria. It does not apply to humans of any kind.
- System always worked well for people who are from so called "RICH" countries and "FRIENDLY" countries who conveniently send their people without ever requiring a visa or shall we say getting the "heard treatment"
- In this big Mac country, people get edgy if they have to wait an extra 2 minutes in the drive through. Try 15 years for SERVICE after paying FEES.
- In this "right now world", marriages end up in divorces for reasons as trivial as long finger nails. Try immigration debate in the household with spouse, family, children and in-laws. They think you are out touch with reality. Not to mention the International calls, legal fees, USCIS fees, employer threats just to name a few excitements along the way.
- Construction of Empire State Building (world's tallest when it was built in early 1930s) took only 1 year and 45 days, it is beyond anyone's comprehension why a review of someone's I-485 or I-140 or some other file with few pages in English takes years.
- Replace the phrase "Advanced Parole". How demeaning it sounds. It feels like immigrants are all convicts. This does not sound like "progress".
- On the subject of freedom, how does it make sense when a qualified person is always kept under threat of immigration paperwork that he or she become an involuntary slave to the master's of employer world? This is the plight of most of the employment based applicants. They are stuck in a dark tunnel during the most productive years of their careers.
- Anyone who works for a living and expects a pay check aspires to get ahead in their profession both in terms of climbing the corporate ladder and making some extra money to save for their children and for retirement. Such aspirations remain so for many and may never materialize.
- Would anyone in America buy a big screen TV and handover all the money to get a receipt that says "we received the money. But it does not guarantee that you actually paid us, or does not acknowledge we in fact received your money or does not guarantee you will ever receive your TV. I hope you get the drift. No one will ever do any business with such entities. You should look into the language in the notices that come out of USCIS. Fascinating. We all know there are no guarantees for anything. So why the fee payment must be guaranteed for a service that has no clue when it will deliver if at all? Try the same analogy at a drive through when someone is hungry.
- Since most EB applicants are stuck in a corner one way to get some attention to this problem is - stop working and demand payments, pay raises and bonuses from employers. Just following uscis example.
- Land, labor and capital are primary inputs to make capitalism work. If there is no free flow of labor and capital land may not be worth much after all. Good to think about it in big picture policy discussion.
Thank you for your leadership.

At May 3, 2010 at 10:36:00 AM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Isn't that great that at least you did not have to wait 5 years or more to be with your family. Congratulations. We are happy for you...

At June 4, 2010 at 9:50:00 AM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hello Sir,
Could you please confirm the following?
1. Is pre-registration of I-485 (EB categories GC) process being implemented in 2010?
2. If yes, will it give the flexibility of applying for EAD even if the priority date of the applicant is not included in the range of current date established by Department of State Visa Bulletin?


At June 9, 2010 at 3:52:00 PM EDT , Anonymous Chris said...

What an amazing collection of comments. The article was good, but the comments are the star of this blog post. They are written by people fueled with grief, anger, and frustration. I've learned a lot today from reading this. Every natural citizen should know what immigrants who want to do things legally go through to get a Green Card or other immigration approval.

At June 18, 2010 at 12:46:00 PM EDT , Anonymous Retta said...

I think anyone that wants to come to America for a better life should be welcome, it is what our country was built on, but I think they should come legally. It should not be so hard to do it legally, then we would not have so many illegals.

At June 30, 2010 at 2:59:00 PM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

To effectively bring about change and restore credibility, the USCIS must be bold enough to change the institutional culture which places personal interest, job security, and personal loyalty as the key requirement for the hiring and promotion of key decision makers. Typically, the promotion in the field offices is without regard for competence and performance.

Every supervisor should, as minimum, be required to possess a college degree and if not, should be given an opportunity to complete a degree within a specified time frame or removed from the supervisory position.

Similarly, a college degree should be the minimum threshold to be hired as an adjudicator. It is distressing to find that a significant number of the adjudicators and supervisors in the California Service Center, in particular, do not even speak the English language sufficiently let alone the ability to read and understand the language to effectively and understand and apply the immigration laws and regulations. The “cut and paste” and template driven written decisions are often incomprehensible and depending on one’s mood serve as a source of comic relief, frustration, or confusion and reflect very unfavorably on the organization.

It is ironic that the people entrusted to evaluate the credentials of persons who are required to demonstrate academic achievements or financial ability to qualify for the employment based visas neither hold college degrees or the competence to properly analyze the complex legal and financial information required as a basis for eligibility.

In this day and age, it is not acceptable to expect those who lack the competence and a college degree to engage in complex regulatory adjudication and to further entrust the duty to supervise others on the basis of longevity or personal relationships alone.

Every single comment articulated above describes an organization which is managed by those who do not have the intellectual capacity, the knowledge, or understanding of the purposes of the immigration laws and regulations.

To attract and retain the best and the brightest, the USCIS must demonstrate its commitment to those values.

Without this fundamental change in the culture of the organization, the USCIS will not be able to effectively administer its mandate. Changing the culture also requires the organizational compliance with the merit system laws in the selection and promotion of supervisory and management personnel. Only then can the USCIS assure itself of a dedicated, motivated, savvy, and an enthusiastic and competent workforce. The present state of the organization is characterized by significant moral problems evident when those who are called upon lack the ability to produce results and those with the ability are cast aside.

It has now been two years since President Obamas' election and the promise of Change.... I hope that the USCIS will not be among those whose failure will defeat the president's commitment and promise and a reason for his non re-election.

At the very minimum, if CIR and transformation are among the key goals during the president's term, the organization should have the human intellectual capital to actively engage these issues rather than the historical "passive" or "reactive" approach characteristic of agencies lacking in competence and confidence.

June 30, 2010 2:48:35 PM EDT

At July 25, 2010 at 11:24:00 PM EDT , Anonymous vierect said...

i think we all were sold a line of bull with obamas "change" speech

At January 18, 2011 at 9:17:00 AM EST , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Good morning Alejandro Mayorkas,
Happy New Year & Wish you all the Best.
Please make the Prioirty Date current for Every Country . Let everyone can enjoy by filing I-485 & get Advance Parole .At least Lots of H1B -Employment base holder family away from their Own county family like I am from India.. I did not go to see my Family since last 6 years . WE pay regular Tax . We work hard. We are vey peaceful & goor moral character people .
Please make the prioty Date current This would bring big Revenue for USCIS & this helps also you know how much happiness brings this implementation. We all Employment base non-immigrant are very professional & very Loyal to country . We put our all efforts to build better Nation , to build better community , to bring peace & happiness .. Do you know How much feeling do we carry , When American Govt. does not want to take care at all even We pay relular TAX & obey the Rule & Law ..& looking foraward to get Green Card ..
Please God Bless you & God Bless to America .. If India is my Mother & America is my DAd.. Please feels our feeling & show your sympathy to Emplyment Base Green Card candidates .. Thank you .

At February 15, 2011 at 2:41:00 PM EST , Anonymous Rover North said...

Hi Director Mayorkas

Sincere good luck with such a hard posting as this one and do not let the negatives detract you from your mission. Just keep your eye on the goals you set for yourself.

Fact is immigrants like myself had to overcome MANY obstacles to get here and this has made me more determined to succeed. I suspect many born Americans do not appreciate what they have and us who had to work hard and sacrifice to be here because we WANT to be here are more "american" than most native born people will give us credit for?

Congrats on being a TRUE American because you WANT to be one.

At May 11, 2011 at 12:31:00 PM EDT , Anonymous Matthew David said...

We are still holding same job titles/ same pay because of filed LCA description -- this is a type of exploitation we are facing from employers. We just want to know "when"?

At July 13, 2011 at 6:16:00 PM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Dear Sir,

I am impressed that you have achieved so much. However there are many of us who would like to achieve and contribute to this country. I have been legally in this country since 2003 and I have been waiting for a GC for almost 18 years. When will the F-1 category move? I have been working and paying taxes and want to move onto better opportunities. I am highly educated and speak English very well. Please let the family based immigration numbers mover forward so that we can be reunited with our families. We have put our lives on hold just to follow the law and we see that illegals are given more preference over legals. You are rewarding lawbreakers and making them feel very important rather than rewarding us law abiders. Things have got to change so that people who really respect this country by following the laws are rewarded for being honest and following due process. Please reconsider your priorities and help people who are stuck in backlogs in the family based immigration category.
At least let us get to our I-485 stage so that we can file for work documents and can also travel out of the country. I hope you will reconsider your priorities and I am certain you will and help honest people like us.

At September 8, 2011 at 3:06:00 AM EDT , Anonymous Dijeta said...

Respected sir ,
Many people are suffering from priority date crisis .Please, kindly allow us to file I-485 application.we are experiencing lot of stress in our daily life.we want to buy new home. But we are not sure about getting green card.there are so many people are waiting for green card so that they can buy a new home. If you allow us to file I-485 , in the present economic crisis atleast 10% new homes will be sold. Now everybody sending their salaries to home country. if you give them green card, they can invest their money in housing market by purchasing new homes. Please help us.Thanking you sir.

At October 11, 2011 at 5:22:00 PM EDT , Blogger Xuhua Chen said...

Dear Director,
I have been living in America since 2000, pursuing advanced degrees and performing scientific research for 11 years,obeying every law, paying tax for every penny I earned.
Now my family is suffering from priority date crisis, my son moved to America in 2001 when he was 8 years old and has been appreciating his school education in America since then. Now he is a 12th grader and frustrated in applying to his college of interest. With his H4 visa, he is categorized as “foreigner” in college application. Even though he took all his pre-college education here in America, he has to compete in college application with foreigners, who have significantly different backgrounds. This is not a fair game, especially for us who have dedicated best of our lives to America. All this is just because we cannot file our I-485 form due to backlog:college admission offices take applicants whose I-485 petitions are pending as residents.
Please help me, help my son.
Please allow us to file I-485 application.

At February 15, 2012 at 9:30:00 PM EST , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Dear Mr. Mayorkas you know how hard it is for families to be separated i was wondering if you could somehow help stop that. Lots of dreams are broken due to separation and sometimes just trying to make ends meet is a daily challenge for spouse that is left behind. It causes so much stress and worry because you worry about your spouse being in a drug and cartel territory and so much corruption. Also i think something should be done to corrupt lawyers and people should be able to get a refund of their money for having to wait so long for a response.Also for the client having to do the lawyers job and on top of that having to pay so much money without a hope. I think that if there was an easier way to know the exact steps in case your petition is denied. Also what can be done if the officer who helped the applicant made a mistake what is the compensation the person gets for the loss and suffering of time. It is also hard for someone who has been denied has a job waiting as soon as they come back but being denied unfairly is not right. I think a better system should be in place that the person is told that they can appeal the case at that moment instead of not telling them and now theres no hope and the person is left hopeless and does not know their options. Also anxiety gets the best of the person left in a country unkown to them and their family is separated. I ask you to please try and see what can be done i would greatly appreciate it. Thank you for your time in reading my hardship blog desperately in need.

At June 21, 2012 at 8:11:00 AM EDT , Anonymous Anonymous said...

Respected sir ,
More than 500,000 Software Professional on H1B status who are working in US continuously without a break for more than 6 years have an approved labor certification (PERM) and Immigrant Petition I-140. They are waiting on their priority dates to be current to file for their I485 (third and final stage in Green Card processing). All these software professionals under this category are stuck with their current employer. They are not able to utilize their unique specialized skills for the growth of the economy as they cannot move out of the company.

By giving them conditional or temporary green card, the following are the advantages:

1. Since all these software professionals has already a stable job the economy will not loose any job openings to these immigrants that would have gone to a citizen.
2. On the contrary, more than 80% of these software professionals can come out of the clutches of the current employer and will move to jobs of their specialized skills. Currently US based companies are outsourcing these jobs overseas mainly because they are not able to recruit software professionals with the specialized skills. When it becomes available locally, these companies would prefer to use local resources than to outsource.
3. When these 80% of the software professional move to new jobs, there will be a new opening created for the existing jobs.
4. On receipt of Green Card, the feeling of un-certainity in these immigrants will be gone. And the next step would be an investment towards purchase of a home.
5. They will be tempted and motivated to move all their bank savings from their home country to USA.
6. Many of them are not able to undertake travel outside US due to entry visa issue. This will not be hurdle any more and free and frequent travel take place which will boost the tourist industry and thereby promote our economy.

At January 14, 2013 at 7:16:00 AM EST , Anonymous marble mosaic said...

Dear Director,
This is my humble request,
Here I am waiting for my immigration visa for the last five years(EB3 ROW catagory).Because of this ,my life is on hold.Because of uncertainity about date becoming current I couldnot decide what to do next in my life.There is no other option than waiting for the visa number to be current.Isn't it pity holding job offer letter for the past five years but not getting chance to work.Sir, you should do something to reduce the never ending backlog,so that people who are waiting in this endless que whoselife is on hold like mine will at least take a breath of relief and can sleep without nightmare.
Sir,If it is at all possible donot count dependents in the EB visa number.
Thank you
Hope you will do something to solve this terrible backlog.

At February 7, 2013 at 11:52:00 AM EST , Blogger Noman Ali said...

The first paragraph of your blog is very touching and conveys a lot.I am impressed that you have achieved so much..:)

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At February 21, 2013 at 5:11:00 PM EST , Anonymous on page optimization said...

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At February 22, 2013 at 2:10:00 AM EST , Blogger Talha SEO said...

Talking about economic stimulus, I know most of the immigrants will buy a house and a new car and all the related things which go with them once we know we are settled (read get the green card).
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