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Immigration Issues/Follow to join : Interview Schedule & Priority date


QUESTION: I'm LPR (EB2 - PD : Apr-2009) and have applied follow to join (I824) for my wife. USCIS has approved I824. I paid fees, all documents and NVC completed the case in SEP'15 and sent an email that the interview will scheduled next. I have not received an update from NVC for a month.. After repetitive calls, today a rep mentioned that the priority date for eb2 is 2006 now and they will have to wait until that reaches April-2009 period for interview scheduling. I'm confused with this...

Here's an excerpt from USCIS site on follow-to-join benefit... "If you were married and/or had children who did not obtain permanent residence at the same time you did, they may be eligible for follow-to-join benefits. This means that you do not have to submit a separate Form I-130 for your spouse and/or children. In addition, your spouse and/or children will not have to wait any extra time for a visa number to become available. In this case, you may simply notify a U.S. consulate that you are a permanent resident so that your spouse and/or children can apply for an immigrant visa."

1) I thought the PD is not relevant in "follow-to-join" case since the spouse will not have to wait for a visa number... Is it not true?

2) I thought once the CASE is complete in NVC, they will schedule for the interview for "follow-to-join" case immediately.. How long is it going to take now?

I was waiting to bring my family as earliest, but I'm not sure on what can be done now in this situation with the above response from NVC..

I would really appreciate if you could kindly clarify.  Thanks a lot.

ANSWER: Hello,

Excuse me for the delay that I took to reply to you.

1) You are right. As long as you have your green card already, the priority date is not relevant. You do not have to wait for a priority date nor for a visa number to become available. You do not have to file a separate I-130 or anything like that. I guess it would be possible that after you got your green card the priority date may retrogress, and that might affect following to join benefits but not your green card because it has already been approved. However, such retrogression usually does not affect your following-to-join wife.

2) Try to call the National Visa Center again. Processing times for following-to-join at consular posts vary from post to post.

Thank you for your attention. Best wishes.   

[an error occurred while processing this directive]---------- FOLLOW-UP ----------

QUESTION: Thanks a lot for your response, sir. I got very contrary message on this from multiple forums, so I got confused.

1) I called NVC again twice...the rep as well as supervisor repeatedly saying now that i will have to wait until the PD reaches Apr-2009.. I don't know what else I could do?  How can I communicate/convince NVC that the PD is not relevant in "follow-to-join" case?  

2) May I please request your legal service in this case to get this case moving?

Appreciate your response and thanks a lot.

ANSWER: Hello,

Excuse me for the delay. I can help you prepare a letter for free.

Thank you for your attention. Best regards.

---------- FOLLOW-UP ----------

QUESTION: Thanks a lot, Sir.  Appreciate your help. Would you mind of providing a letter for me on this? Could you please send me letter format in my email id or would you please provide your contact email to contact you personally, so that I can contact in private? My sincere thanks to you...


If you are already a lawful permanent resident, you can use the following letter template:



Mr. Phillip Slattery, Director
National Visa Center
31 Rochester Avenue
Suite 200
Portsmouth, NH 03801-2915

Subject:   EB-2 – Following-to-Join
     NVC – Case number []

Dear Sir,

After becoming a permanent resident under EB-2 category, I filed I-824 for my wife. I-824 was approved by USCIS in [month and year]. After paying fees and submitting to the National Visa Center, I got an email from the National Visa Center that my case had been completed in September 2015 and that an interview would be scheduled for my wife. Since then, I have not heard anymore from the National Visa Center and I have repeatedly contacted the National Visa Center, but a staff told me that my wife would wait for the priority date to become current. According to the said staff, the priority date for EB-2 is August 2006 for India.

Please note that the priority date of my EB-2 petition is April 2009. However, as far as I know, when a person is already a lawful permanent resident and was married at the time that the green card was granted, he does not have to wait for a priority date nor a visa number to become available.

Here is the information about the petitioner and the principal applicant:

Petitioner’s full name:
Petitioner’s date of birth:

Principal applicant’s full name:
Principal applicant’s date of birth:

Looking forward to hearing from you as soon as possible, I remain.

Yours sincerely,

[Your name]
[Your address]
[Your telephone number]

Thank you for your attention. Good luck and best wishes.

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