EB2 India GC Wait 20 yrs Average, 151 Yrs Worst Case

Written by Anil Gupta
  By Anil Gupta - Updated on  15 May, 19

EB2 India Predictions Green card is 20 to 70 years

EB2 Priority Date June 2019 – Employment Based

EB1 has moved back 2 years and EB2 stepped ahead for just 3 days. EB3, as expected is holding back due to recent fast jumps. The expectation is that EB3 and EB2 will retrogress by the end of current fiscal year in Sep 2019.

IndiaDate of FilingFinal Action
EB11 Oct 17 (No change)1 Jan 15 (-2 years)
EB21 Jun 09 (No Change)19 Apr 09 (+3 days)
EB31 Apr 10 (No Change)1 Jul 09 (+0 days)

Source: June 2019 Visa Bulletin

USCIS has stopped the use of ‘Date of filing’ chart in February 2019 Visa Bulletin.

EB2 India Predictions Green Card Wait Time

If your employment based green card priority date is July 2009, you have already waited for close to 10 years at this time. The date is NOT expected to be current anytime in near 2-3 years.

This makes the waiting time for anyone already in the EB2 Indian queue at-least 20 years. The maximum is expected to be 151 years and average is about 40 years for an India born skilled worker filing their US Green Card PERMtoday in 2018.

Indians waiting for GC Priority Date in 2019

GC Issued 201713,0822,8796,641
Projected Wait6 Yrs151 Yrs17 Yrs

NOTE: Dependents = Spouse and Children (less than 21 years age). As per USCIS estimates, EB1 dependents = 1.4 of primary. EB2 dependents = primary numbers, EB3 dependents = 1.1 of primary.

EB-1: Extraordinary ability, EB-2: Advanced degrees, EB-3: Bachelor’s degrees

Source USCIS in May 2018 and travel.state.gov.

Indian green card queue waiting numbers issued by USCIS

Indian green card queue waiting numbers issued by USCIS If the same amount of 2879 Green cards are issued to EB2 India every year from now, which seems like a case without any carryover form other categories, the Indian EB2 skilled worker has a wait of about 151 years (433,368/2,879 = 151 years).

Related: Current USCIS H1B processing time – Updated Daily

Indian EB2 green card wait 151 years Indian EB2 green card wait 151 years

H1B Green card with US born citizen Kid?

Unless the US Immigration law is changed, to remove country based GC limits with law like HR 392, there is NO real possibility of any Indian joining the EB2 Green card queue, to get Green card in his/her lifetime.

To circumvent this 150 year wait, your Adult US citizen child can sponsor you once he/she turns 21. This will give you Green card immediately as there is neither any yearly limit nor any priority date waiting for immediate relatives of US citizens.

India EB2 to EB3 downgrades possible With EB3 Indian GC queue moving ahead faster than EB2 starting October 2018 visa bulletin, the chances are very high that EB2s will start jumping the ship to EB3 as has been the case with Chinese Queue.

The same EB3 people who moved from EB3 to EB2 to get faster green card will see downward movement now. The US immigration law is crazy!

EB2 Indian can downgrade to EB3 easily.

PERM filings are increasing Year on Year

The PERM filings are stuffing the already backlogged Indian EB2 Green Card queue. Normally, if there are Green Cards left in EB1 category, they spill over to EB2. But, with current trend where EB1 itself is backlogged, EB2 India is just left with 2,879 (as per report for FY 2017).

To add salt to the misery, each employment based green card is counted separately for each H1B or any other immigrant family member.
This means that if you filed Employment based GC, your dependent wife, your dependent kid will be counted too in the EB2 number 2879.

If you take an average family size of 3, the total employment based GC’s would come down to mere 959 !!! With only 959 Green cards issued every year to EB2 India in 2018, do you think that you will ever get to see that prized card in your life time?

This happens due to the EB3 to EB2 upgrades every year. EB3 becomes eligible for upgrade after 5 years of work experience.

EB2 India Predictions Green card is 20 to 70 years

India Green Card backlog Survey

EB2 is the most preferred category for Indian H1B workers to file Green Card.

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   125 Useful Questions & Answers from comments

  1. Ajit Kumar
    Ajit Kumar 6 Mar, 19 at 2:56 pm

    Hi Anil,

    My PD is Oct 31st 2017. I have my approved i140, but have not filed 485 . Would you be able to advise :

    – When my dates would become current based on the new analysis
    – Would USCIS accept DF dates any time soon ??


    • Anil Gupta
      Anil Gupta 6 Mar, 19 at 4:26 pm

      Your PD date of Oct 2017 will get current possibly after 90 years if the US immigration law is not changed to remove country based limits.

      • Ajit Kumar
        Ajit Kumar 6 Mar, 19 at 4:57 pm

        Thanks Anil for the quick reply.
        I should have mentioned that it’s EB 1. Can you please advise.

        • Anil Gupta
          Anil Gupta 6 Mar, 19 at 5:06 pm

          As per my estimate, your EB1 date may get current by Nov 2019.

          • Ajit Kumar
            Ajit Kumar 6 Mar, 19 at 5:07 pm

            Thanks Anil. Appreciate it. Have a good evening

  2. Remi Nders
    Remi Nders 21 Feb, 19 at 11:46 am

    Hi Anil, thanks for detailed and insightful analysis. I have EB2-I-140 approved with PD 3-Aug-2010 thru former employer A. With current Employer B, I got new PERM approved on 29-Nov-2018. My current Employer B’s attorney’s is pushing me to decide on EB2 or EB3 category and file for next step which is I-140. With EB3 movements in recent months, I am not able to decide whether to go for I-140 with EB2 or EB3. My employer is also saying they will do I-140 only once( no downgrades or upgrades later).

    What would be your recommendations for me considering current situation? Appreciate your guidance.

    Note: My current H1B is valid till 21-Sep-2020 and I think I would need an approved I-140 for current employer to extend H1B in 2020. I also saw in your post – “USCIS has stopped the use of ‘Date of filing’ chart in February 2019 Visa Bulletin”- What does that mean? Thanks

    • Anil Gupta
      Anil Gupta 21 Feb, 19 at 3:09 pm

      My suggestion is to go with EB2 at this time and file for downgrade to EB3 later if your final action date gets current in EB3.

      At this time, only ‘final action’ chart in the visa bulletin is allowed to be used. ‘Date of filing’ chart was available only till Jan 2019.

      • Remi Nders
        Remi Nders 21 Feb, 19 at 4:51 pm

        Thanks Anil for guidance. Does that mean that going forward there is no meaning of “Date of Filing” Date, is it only for India? Would we be able to use only “Final Dates” to apply for 485, EAD etc? But I can see Date of Filing changed from to 01-Oct-18 in Feb bulletin to 01-Mar-18 to Mar bulletin for Philippines.

        If Date of Filing for EB3-India was moving forward ( currently 01-APR-10 for EB3) than I had a good chance of hitting my PD 3-Aug-2010 in next few months? Any idea what is the reasoning that USCIS would not be progressing Date of Filing?

        • Anil Gupta
          Anil Gupta 21 Feb, 19 at 9:13 pm

          USCIS opens up the use of ‘Date of Filing’ chart occasionally. They notify it explicitly and I update the article too.

          At this time, only ‘Final Action’ chart is available for using and filing i485 applications.

  3. Jitesh
    Jitesh 28 Jan, 19 at 8:52 pm

    My PD is EB2 May 26 2009. Do you think it is worth it to downgrade to EB3?

    • Anil Gupta
      Anil Gupta 9 Feb, 19 at 10:02 am

      If you want to get the i485 EAD and AP, then you can file EB3 downgrade.
      It is possible that EB2 final action date may not reach May 26, 09 at all by the end of current fiscal year.

      And the EB3 may also retrogress. So, if you do not want to miss the bus of getting EAD, you can file EB3 downgrade, else wait for EB2.
      EB3 downgrade process: https://www.am22tech.com/eb3-india-beats-eb2-in-uscis-gc-priority-race/

      • Jitesh
        Jitesh 9 Feb, 19 at 10:12 am

        Thanks Anil. Forgot to mention that I already have EAD and AP (since 2012). I am wondering about is it worth it to downgrade to get Green card faster? Trying to evaluate risk vs reward if I downgrade to EB3.

        • Anil Gupta
          Anil Gupta 9 Feb, 19 at 10:43 am

          If you already have EAD and AP, then there is no use of filing i485 with EB3 at this time. Until, the ‘Final Action’ date is current for you in EB3, you won’t get Green card anyway.

          • Jitesh
            Jitesh 10 Feb, 19 at 12:27 pm

            Wouldn’t I need to file new I-140 for EB3 first? I don’t need to wait for “Final Action” to be current for filing I-140 right? I think It takes few months to get I-140 approved. So by the time I-140 gets approved, “Final Action” date may become current for EB3 and then file EB3 I-485 at that time. But there is also possibility that EB2 date becomes current before that. So that’s why I am confused.

            • Anil Gupta
              Anil Gupta 11 Feb, 19 at 8:13 am

              That’s why I have suggested to wait for the EB3 final action to get current before taking any action.
              It is possible that EB2 final action may get current earlier than EB3.

              This race between EB2 and EB3 will continue now as both are pretty much same at this time and people would be jumping from one queue to other.

            • Jitesh
              Jitesh 11 Feb, 19 at 1:51 pm


        • Dexter
          Dexter 14 Feb, 19 at 9:18 am

          How did you get EAD and AP if your priority date is not current? Wondering if it is still possible?

          • Anil Gupta
            Anil Gupta 14 Feb, 19 at 10:16 am

            He would have filed his i485 and EAD + AP when the 2012 dates got current some years ago.
            It just happened once and since then, the EB2 India dates has never touched 2012 again.

            • Faltu
              Faltu 11 Mar, 19 at 2:59 pm

              2012 was current sometime ago? I definitely missed that 🙁

            • Anil Gupta
              Anil Gupta 11 Mar, 19 at 2:59 pm

              Not sometime….some years ago :). Yes, it did get current once upon a time and has never been able to catch up till today!

  4. Suresh
    Suresh 14 Jan, 19 at 9:49 am

    Hi Anil,

    From where did you get the counts of PERM applications, can you share me the link. I am following some other threads, but those have different counts than yours. (Slightly lower counts than yours)


  5. Karan Arora
    Karan Arora 14 Jan, 19 at 9:47 am

    Hi Anil,
    My PD is Feb 1,2011. I have both EB2 and EB2 I-140 from same employer. If in the future EB3 becomes current, do I need to do anything or just file I-485 with the EB3 I-140 ?
    Thank you and much appreciated.

    • Anil Gupta
      Anil Gupta 14 Jan, 19 at 10:04 am

      You are one lucky chap!
      You can simply file EB3 i485 as and when date gets current.

  6. Karthik
    Karthik 14 Jan, 19 at 9:47 am

    Hi Anil,

    I had Eb3 Jun 2011 PD but ported to Eb2 3 years back,. My question, do i still need to downgrade to Eb3 and apply for I140? when do you think my PD will be current.

    • Anil Gupta
      Anil Gupta 14 Jan, 19 at 10:04 am

      At this time, there is no need to downgrade. Jun 2011 will take at-least 3-4 years to get current.

  7. Anil Gupta
    Anil Gupta 24 Oct, 18 at 5:48 am

    Thanks KS for sharing the details. You have done a fair analysis. Appreciate it.

  8. Abhishek Kohli
    Abhishek Kohli 18 Oct, 18 at 1:34 pm

    Hi Amit

    Thank you for this Elaborate Analysis.

    • Anil Gupta
      Anil Gupta 18 Oct, 18 at 1:41 pm

      You are welcome.

  9. EB2Wait
    EB2Wait 27 Jun, 18 at 10:42 pm

    I don’t think EB2 India wait time will go beyond 15 years in near future.

    • Anil Gupta
      Anil Gupta 28 Jun, 18 at 6:11 am

      Hope for the best. But, today, it is more than 20 years already.

  10. IndianGuy
    IndianGuy 27 Jun, 18 at 9:44 pm

    I will ask you not to spread fear. You have shown 2879 EB2 India GC were issued last year but if you see historically USCIS issued 10K+ visas for EB2 India in previous years. Your stats mean nothing. Also the dependent numbers are too large.

    • Anil Gupta
      Anil Gupta 28 Jun, 18 at 6:10 am

      Hi IndianGuy,
      I am not spreading fear. These are facts and official figures shared by USCIS and Travel.State.gov officially.
      Check the travel.state.gov’s official report for EB2 Indian GC issued in 2017 and it shows the number 2879. I am not cooking this number at home 🙂

      If you want to ignore them, then it is your choice. The source links are also provided in above article to validate the interpretation.

      • IndianGuy
        IndianGuy 28 Jun, 18 at 8:15 am

        Can you list the number of EB2 India visas given in last 10 years? The same websites also provide historical data. In past even 17K EB2 visas were given in a year. One bad year does not mean anything. Lets look at all the historical stats. ROW EB2 demand will go down as EB3 is current. China is already down porting. Also EB1 can not sustain huge demand for long. That is for highly qualified people, the entire world can not become researcher or manager and there will be slowdown on that too.

        • Anil Gupta
          Anil Gupta 28 Jun, 18 at 8:42 am

          That’s one of the analysis that you are supporting based on the assumption that EB1 and EB3 will not have much demand and will be giving away GCs to EB2.
          I have shared my analysis from a different point of view (based on the last 10 years increasing demand for EB2 and EB1) where I beleive that all 3 will see high demand and hence EB2 will loose in the race.

      • IndianGuy
        IndianGuy 28 Jun, 18 at 8:23 am

        See in 2011 stats https://travel.state.gov/content/dam/visas/Statistics/AnnualReports/FY2011AnnualReport/FY11AnnualReport-Table%20V-Part2.pdf
        There were 23K EB2 India visas were given. In one year. Why don’t you be optimistic and use a realistic average EB2 visas issued per year in last 10 years? Then do the math. You are telling the world only half truth and not the past.

        • Anil Gupta
          Anil Gupta 28 Jun, 18 at 8:47 am

          Please be careful with your words. I don’t appreciate the hard language.
          If you want to discuss, please appreciate the other person’s view too.

          Your analysis does not match our analysis does not mean that we are telling half truth.
          2011 is history my friend. Before 2011, EB2 people used to get GC within 5 years.

          Today, the priority date has just touched 2009!

          If your mathematical calculation says that you will gain EB2 years, then, be happy with it.

          I am not asking you to believe my analysis or take any action based on it.

          There are many such interpretations of current numbers.

          • IndianGuy
            IndianGuy 28 Jun, 18 at 10:37 am

            Anil, I am sincerely sorry if I used wrong words. Being an Indian and waited more than 10 years to get a green card, I feel the pain of the fellow countrymen. The long wait delays natural career growth and family priorities. I have cousin brothers who are now in GC queue. The current immigration policies are becoming stricter and I am worried that news like this will cause fear, uncertainty, doubts. That’s all. Just trying to understand why so many EB1. When I applied my EB3 GC back in 2003, only handful respected guys used to get EB1 (could be 1500 max). May be the world has become more qualified and competitive in last 15 years.

            • Anil Gupta
              Anil Gupta 28 Jun, 18 at 11:35 am

              You are welcome.

              My analysis is based on the current priority dates and the number of PERMs filed in last 5 years. The current back log is already 300k.

              If the immigration law is not changed, there is little hope (0.1%) for any Indian to really see green card in their whole lifetime.
              Even if the country limits are removed, any Indian with 300k backlog will still take 10-5 years to get his GC.

              Also, EB1 has started to see restricted priority dates each year whereas earlier, EB1 was always current and nobody expected it to even get subscribed to full quota. Most of them are ‘so called ‘International Managers’ that eat up EB1 quota.

              Given this trend, it is difficult to expect EB2 to see any relief soon. If EB3 moves past EB2 priority date, people will start jumping from EB2 to EB3 as has happened in case of Chinese nationals.

            • IndianGuy
              IndianGuy 28 Jun, 18 at 4:26 pm

              Just on a lighter note, how are you expecting a pro-immigration law from the current president, who is proposing travel ban, imposing import tax tariff, restricting EB5, H4 and certainly have no liberal immigration mentality. Hope you follow news. I think new law is not a possibility but when EB2s will become managers, they will all upgrade to EB1.

            • Anil Gupta
              Anil Gupta 28 Jun, 18 at 4:34 pm

              I do follow news. There were two laws proposed to make changes to immigration law to make green cards merit based and stop family chain migration.
              If you read the details of those bills, they would have helped speed up the jammed queues by making more GCs available to existing backlogged queues. Unfortunately, Both of them have been voted out this week.

              1. https://www.am22tech.com/bill-to-remove-country-based-green-card-caps/
              2. https://www.am22tech.com/bill-increase-legal-skilled-green-cards/

              On one hand you are optimistic that EB2 will improve and on other hand, you say that I should not expect anything from Trump!
              I do not understand how you project EB2 queue to improve without any change in law, by your calculation.

              EB2 to EB1 is not a cake walk. So, EB2 to EB3 is possible but not EB1.
              The ‘International manager’ loophole exploited by consulting companies is what makes lot of people eligible for EB1. But, its not easy as choosing to do it and you get it. There are lot of restrictions and proofs required.

            • R4J
              R4J 27 Nov, 18 at 2:45 am

              Hey Anil, are you saying that people who filed GC in EB2 can downgrade to EB3? Wouldn’t they need proper reasons or documentation for doing so? Also, if the trend reverses the same people would upgrade to EB2 won’t they? Will the employers do such a thing for an FTE, I would assume it would be mostly done by consultants.

            • Anil Gupta
              Anil Gupta 27 Nov, 18 at 9:27 am

              Yes, that’s what is going to happen now i.e. EB2 to EB3 downgrade.
              Chinese people have been doing it for last couple of years as they faced this same situation earlier when their EB3 moved faster than EB2.

              EB2 to EB3 downgrade is easy but then if you want to move up again i.e. EB3 to EB2, you might find it difficult to explain the reasons!!

              This whole system is crazy and US immigration lawmakers never imagined that any such situation can ever exist. But, it is a reality today and soon you will see people starting jumping the EB2 queues.

            • Aristotle
              Aristotle 24 Oct, 18 at 12:37 am

              EB1 has three sub categories: EB1-A (Extraordinary Ability), EB1-B (Outstanding Researcher or Professor), and EB1-C (International Manager). I got my GC in EB1-B, but that’s because I have 2 Masters, and a PhD (from an IIT and a respected US University) and several publications, teaching experience, etc.

              The reason why there have been so many EB1 applications and approvals in the past years is EB1-C. Many unscrupulous Indian (and even American) companies have been exploiting a loophole in the law and applying for GC on behalf of their employees in the EB1-C category by the hundreds. When applying in the EB1-B (OR) you have to produce objective proof (publications, citations, letters of recommendation from independent third party reviewers) that the applicant is an internationally renowned researcher. For example, USCIS will give little weightage to a reference letter from your PhD adviser since that person is not an independent referee. In contrast, USCIS does not impose such restrictions on the documentation supporting a EB1-C (International Manager) application. The documentation is all internal, and as a result companies (and their lawyers) easily produce paperwork proving that such and such applicant qualifies for the EB1-C category. You would’ve heard of fake resumes. Well, this is one place where fake resumes are prevalent.

              So it’s not that world has become more qualified in the past years, its just that everyone has now become an international manager!

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