With the immediate suspension of Hips being “so last month”, the Law Society has reiterated its desire to continue with reform in the Conveyancing process. The Law Society has said reform of the house selling process is essential to meet the needs of the home buying market. The Law Society’s opposition to the introduction of HIPs has been strong and consistent. In its opinion Hips had effectively marginalised Conveyancing solicitors with a process, that was at best pseudo legal, and a worst an additional marketing ploy by new entrants in to the home selling and buying arena.

The Law Society stated that HIPs have led to;

“increased costs and a host of cross selling initiatives that were not in the consumers’ interests. The advent of HIPs encouraged estate agents and HIP Providers to vie with each other to gain the initial access to the consumer so they could be referred, for a fee, to other professionals and service providers which distorted the market. These fees were not transparent to the consumer”

Reform Proposals:

The Law Society wants to revamp its TransAction scheme, which was introduced way back in 1989/1990. The Protocol included standard forms of Enquiries and a Fixtures and Fittings Questionnaire. A process which was badly copied under the HIP Regulations in the form of the Property Information Questionnaire (PIQ). The Law Society is recommending a revamp of the forms again to be provided in standard format.

Robert Heslett the Law Society President added;

“The professional integrity and legal skills which solicitors have traditionally brought to the housing market are probably more important now than they have ever been. The marked increase in property fraud, including registration fraud and mortgage fraud, means that the role of the solicitors as the gatekeeper in the process assumes a greater importance. This role falls to solicitors as the most highly regulated professionals in the process. Solicitors can help consumers understand the residential Conveyancing process, the role of the solicitor and others in the buying and selling market and to make informed choices.”

You might say they would say that wouldn’t they! What would be beneficial is for the reform process to be quickened, so that the consumer will see an honest attempt to fill part of the vacuum left by the demise of HIPs. This at a time where the new Coalition Government saw fit to axe a process with no thought or consideration as to what might replace it. In all the clamour surrounding the suspension of HIPs, no one has trumpeted a return to the “good old days” of slow Conveyancing, Seller and Buyer uncertainty and aborted expense.

Whether you are buying a property near the lake right in the heart of the City, and one or one which is near the center in Schaumburg, or which is not far from the river boats in Joliet or even just one is close enough to the Brook-field zoo, the following list describes some important issues for buyers of residential properties in the greater Chicago will be taken as soon as he signed a contract to get it.

Professional Inspection:

If you have not done yet then you should hire a real estate lawyer, your lawyer will strongly recommend you to buy a property by license checking of professional inspector. Costs(May vary from state to state) are associated with a thorough examination by the licensed professional inspector , you can save a dramatic amount in the long term. At least, assuming everything the inspector found to be in perfect condition (that would be unusual).

Note: If the property is checked immediately after signing the contract, the buyer can lose the right to because most of the contracts set a deadline for the buyer notify the seller, and the negotiations, the issues presented by expert inspection.

Mortgage Processing:

If you would like to get a mortgage loan to cover all costs that involved in purchasing the new property, but you did not applied yet for such a loan by the time you can hire a lawyer, and the attorney will let you know the correct process to the loan as soon as possible. And for you lawyer convenience you should give him/her all the lending information with your name, address and contact details of the lender where from you will get the loan.

Sometime before the closing, if you are unable to secure your mortgage for any reason, then you should contact with your real estate lawyer immediately. You lawyer can attempt to secure your mortgage by extending the time period. If you don’t notify the seller about the failure to obtain mortgage that specified in the contract of such a notification (i.e. the “mortgage contingency” clause), then you will be in risk delays and possible forfeiture of your earnest deposit. In order to help accelerate the adoption of the mortgage obligation, it is necessary that you maintain regular contacts with your lender. If your lender is ready then your lawyer can schedule the closing officially.

Know all daetails about using this lien to your advantage

A mechanic’s lien is a legal tool that can be used by the contractors and subcontractors to collect any unsettled payments regarding products and services provided during the construction or up-gradation regarding a real estate project. A contractor or subcontractor can use this tool to realize their debts from the property owner.

There are a number of construction and renovation works that are eligible for mechanic’s liens. Some of these are a new construction project, remodeling (interiors and exteriors), air conditioning, masonry, roofing and flooring, ventilation and so on. The construction of additional features like fences and garages are also under the realm of this lien.

A mechanic’s lien is applicable only when the construction and renovation work done is worth 15% or more of the property value. If the amount of work done is equal to or more than 15% of the real estate’s market value then the contractor or subcontractor involved in the project can obtain a lien.

If you have supplied products or services in a construction or improvement project and are yet to get paid for it you may apply for a lien. There are statutory guidelines that regulate the issuance of a mechanic’s lien. You need to know the right method.

The first step is to provide the property owner a notice regarding your debts. This needs to be done within a period of 120 days from the date when the work was finished. After you have given the notice you need to submit a court petition within 60 days. The next steps involve a ‘Show Cause’ hearing, acquiring an Interlocutory or Temporary Mechanic’s Lien and to prove your point at the trial.

It is necessary to consult an attorney specializing in this field if you want to apply for such a lien. Only an expert is capable of presenting a case properly and thus making it work in your favor.

If there is a mechanic’s lien issued against your property you need to contact a lien attorney immediately. An experienced attorney would be able to guide you in filing collateral actions to save your time and money.

Seattle real estate lawyers and attorneys are the men and women lawyers of Seattle who handle the real estate transactions in and around the greater Seattle, Washington area.

A “Seattle real estate lawyer” is the same thing as a “Seattle real estate attorney”. There is no difference between “lawyer” and “attorney” and this context.

In most residential purchase situations the real estate lawyers and attorneys get involved after the brokers or agents are done with the parties and an earnest money agreement has been agreed to and signed. Usually the broker or brokers help put together the contract, but a person can certainly get the help of a lawyer or attorney at this stage if they want to.

Both the buyer and the seller usually get their own lawyer or attorney and the transaction goes ahead from there.

If the buyer is getting a new mortgage then the buyers lawyer or attorney will often take care of that on behalf of the bank or other lender as well.

In mortgage refinancing situations the mortgage lawyer or attorney sometimes acts for both the borrower and the lender. This happens as well with second mortgages or lines of credit secured by mortgages.

Special caution needs to be taken in situations involving situations where there is no broker or where there might be only one broker involved.  

The main job of the buyer’s lawyer in most situations is to make sure that the buyer gets their name on the property.  The main job of the seller’s lawyer in most situations is to make sure that the seller gets their money.  The bank, if there is one, will often use the buyer’s lawyer as well and the main job on behalf of the bank is for the lawyer in most situations is to make sure that the bank’s mortgage or other security documentation gets properly registered against the property.

Seattle real estate lawyers do much more than the “standard” purchase described above. They must have a deep and really varied knowledge of the law and of how to apply it to various situations.  They must be familiar with both federal and state laws.

Special care must be taken if there are rental tenants in a property that is being either bought or sold. They have rights that can carry over to the new owner. You need to discuss this with your lawyer or attorney.

A Seattle escrow and title insurance company is typically used by the buyer to investigate whether the title is marketable. Title insurance companies also insure the buyer against losses caused by the title being invalid.

Here are just a few of the areas that most Seattle real estate lawyers and attorneys will have experience in. Keep in mind that the best Seattle real estate lawyers and attorneys probably have a broad background but do most of their work in particular field.

Residential Real Estate

Seattle real estate lawyers are involved in practically every single purchase, sale and refinancing of residential real estate in Seattle. This includes both residential house and condominium sales.

The lawyers often get involved in negotiating all kinds of things and holding deals together. The realtors don’t always do a perfect job of putting an offer together. Dower issues arise.  Purchase money issues arise.  Property tax matters need to be adjusted so each party only pays their share and not more. Title, survey and boundary issues come up. The real estate lawyer or attorney must be familiar with all areas of residential real estate contract law including contract, specific performance, non-disclosure, fraud, misrepresentation and more. When financing is being obtained the purchaser’s lawyer or attorney will sometimes act for the bank or lender as well. These mortgage lawyers are responsible for making sure the mortgage gets properly signed and registered. It takes a great deal of coordination and communication among all the parties to close the deal.

Commercial Real Estate

Seattle real estate lawyers and attorneys are involved at some stage in every purchase and sale of commercial real estate. This includes land and buildings whether they be corner stores, shopping centre’s or high rise office buildings. Commercial real estate law involves commercial purchases, commercial sales, real estate investment opportunities, construction, development issues including, land use planning, zoning issues, farm purchases, farm sales, leasing, landlord and tenant matters, financing, refinancing, mortgages, second mortgages, foreclosures and everything that goes along with these situations. If there are changes in “the market” before the deal closes then it can really complicate things. One party or the other may suddenly want out. The legal matters that come up in commercial real estate situations can be extremely complex.

Construction Real Estate

Behind every construction project in Seattle there is a real estate lawyer or attorney. These projects might be developing residential real estate or they might be constructing commercial properties. These construction real estate lawyer’s deal with owners, lenders, contractors, municipal officials, land titles offices, utility providers, builder’s liens, mortgages, mortgage advances, construction defects and claims, construction accident claims, progress payments, warranties and all of the situations that go along with these. Construction real estate lawyer’s negotiate mortgages, re-financing’s, purchase and sale agreements, commercial leases (i.e. office, medical, dental, restaurant, industrial property, or shopping center leases) and more. As with any real estate deal, if the market changes before the deal is concluded (i.e. before the project is complete and money has changed hands) it can really get interesting as one party or the other may suddenly want to get out of the deal. Being a construction real estate lawyer or attorney is a high pressure, fast paced and demanding profession.

These are the steps to follow in a successful New York home purchase:

Determine affordability – A home is the largest single investment you have probably ever made. The first question has to be “Can you afford the home you’ve chosen?”. Hopefully you’ve reviewed this before making an offer but if you haven’t this would be the time to take a hard look at the numbers and to make sure they still make sense to you. At closing you will have to pay the price for the home and closing costs. Usually the bulk of the purchase price is paid with a mortgage loan. Your monthly mortgage payment will generally cover principal and interest on you mortgage loan, real estate taxes and property insurance (not always). Afterward, you will need to budget for that payment, maintenance, utility bills, and repairs. Remember there are tax advantages to home ownership that you need to consider as well. To avoid surprises, examine the seller’s bills to get an idea of the monthly expenses for the home. Also check the age and condition of appliances, plumbing, roof, structures and wiring since they might need repair after your purchase.

Make your offer – You’ve made your bid. You now must wait until you are notified that the seller has accepted it. Once they have you may be asked to sign a “Binder” and to put down a token amount of money ($100 is common). If you are don’t worry, binders aren’t binding in New York unless they contain all of the essential elements of the transaction. They are usually not prepared that way but are prepared just to outline the basic agreement and to reassure both buyer and seller (and maybe the broker) that there is really a deal. If you are in doubt, mark the binder “SUBJECT TO ATTORNEY APPROVAL” and see your attorney within some reasonable period thereafter.

Hire your attorney – At this point you are going to have many questions and you will be called upon to do a number of things in a very short period of time. Since most attorneys charge a flat fee for their services, hiring an attorney early in the transaction will allow you to have a resource available to help you separate what you must do from what others want you to do  

Home Buying Tips – Choosing your attorney

How long has the attorney been in practice?

How many transactions have they handled?

Do real estate transaction make up a large part of their practice?

How long have they been practicing in this field?

If you would like an initial consultation will the attorney agree to meet with you? If so, will they charge for it? How much?

Will you be charged a flat fee or will you be charged on an hourly basis. Hourly billing for residential real estate transactions is unusual and, potentially, extremely costly
Given the nature of your transaction, does the attorney believe that he is familiar with the resolution of any anticipated problems? 

Recommendations from real estate brokers and salespersons, mortgage brokers and bankers and others working full time in the field will generally yield the names of experienced attorneys    

DETERMINE THE CONDITION OF THE PROPERTY – It is important to check the condition of the real estate before you sign the contract. If you choose, you may have the premises inspected in advance by a professional or a knowledgeable friend before you are legally bound to buy it. The cost of repairs (or the performance of the repairs themselves) may be addressed in your purchase contract if the seller agrees. Because, as a general rule you accept the condition of the property when you sign the contract (subject to a final inspection before the closing), it is best not rely on the Sellers’ representations about the condition of the house.

Home Buying Tips – Your Engineer

You’ve found the house, you’ve selected an attorney and now yet another professional is needed to help you make the right decision, an engineer. The engineer is going to help you decide if you’re really going to buy the house you’ve found. A good engineer will review all the major systems in the house (plumbing, heating/cooling and electrical, etc.) and will thoroughly inspect the structure itself. He’ll see things you wouldn’t even know to look for!

Choose your engineer carefully –  Ask your friends, co-workers and family for recommendations of an engineer they have used and been happy with.

Go with the engineer – You must walk through with them. See what the engineer may be concerned about. Don’t wait for a report and then try to figure out what he means

Take notes – You’ll never remember everything you’ll want to review afterwards.

Special inspections – You may have unique features at the home you’ve chosen (swimming pool, septic system, central air conditioning, etc.) that are better inspected by  specialized inspectors from that field. Ask the engineer for recommendations

Ask Questions – While you are walking through the house with your engineer he’ll answer anything. That’s the time to ask

SIGN YOUR CONTRACT – OK, the moment of truth is at hand. You will meet with your attorney and review the contract, generally prepared by Sellers’ attorney. Any promises made by seller or broker must be put into the contract. Your attorney will make sure you are protected legally and you will help him identify terms that are unique to your purchase that he will make sure are made a part of the contract. You’ll sign and send the contract back with your down payment check (generally 10% of the purchase price, but frequently less). If you make changes there may be more negotiations before the seller signs. 

MAKE APPLICATION FOR YOUR MORTGAGE LOAN – Hopefully you’ve been shopping around and you know where you want to apply. Although in many cases you will have applied prior to contact, if you haven’t you generally should submit the application no later than a week after the contract is fully signed.

COMPLY WITH LENDER REQUESTS FOR INFORMATION – It is important that you provide any information or documents requested by your mortgage lender as quickly as possible. This will reduce the time required to approve your loan.

OBTAIN AND REVIEW YOUR MORTGAGE COMMITMENT – Careful. Sometimes the commitment isn’t exactly the loan you applied for. Check the interest rate, points, origination fee, fixed rate or adjustable and the amount of the loan. Make sure it’s what you expected and if it isn’t notify the bank and your attorney immediately. Send a copy of the commitment to your lawyer.

PURCHASE HOME OWNERS’ INSURANCE: You will probably be required to bring a homeowners’ insurance policy to closing proving you have insurance as required by your lender (check the commitment for requirements). You will also need a receipt showing that you have paid the premium for one year. There may be other requirements too, so ask your insurance agent to call the lender well before the closing to be certain that the policy is correct.

UTILITIES AND TELEPHONE – As soon as a closing date is set, you should notify the telephone company about the change in your service, and to notify all utilities of the closing date. These include electricity, gas, water and sewer and cable TV, If your new house uses fuel oil, shop carefully for a provider before the closing. disposal.

FINAL INSPECTION – After a closing date has been set, call your Realtor to arrange for a final inspection of the property. The home should be in the same condition it was in on the date of the contract, with the exception of ordinary wear and tear, unless your contract specifically provides otherwise. Usually you’ll also be checking to make sure plumbing, heating, electr9ical systems and appliances are in working order and the roof is free from leaks.

 – Review your mortgage commitment letter and check with your mortgage lender before closing. Lenders sometimes ask that you bring last-minute documentation with you.

 – Exact closing figures are usually not available until the business day before the closing. Once they become available, your attorney will calculate the amount you will need for closing and call you with that information. Please let your attorney know how to reach you the day before closing.

BRING PROPER FUNDS FOR PAYMENT AT CLOSING – Payment to the seller must be made by Certified or Cashier’s check . Consult your attorney for details. You must bring your checkbook also, there are usually a number of small expenses (tax and fuel adjustments, title charges, attorney fees, etc.) to be paid at closing.

Low Rate Money For Your Requirements

When in need of money who would not like a loan at low rate when he has the capability to get it? If you are in possession of an asset and need money to fulfill your needs then secured loans UK can be utilized to help you. All monetary problems can be eased out with the help of these loans.

Secured loans UK are an opportunity which is available to those borrowers who are in possession of any asset like a car house real estate stocks bonds etc and they are ready to pledge it as collateral with a loan lender. This will help the borrower in obtaining the required amount of money so that he can fulfill his needs.

Secured loans UK make available an amount depending upon the equity of the collateral in the market. So while pledging an asset he should take care that the asset has a good equity value so that he can get a higher amount at a lower rate of interest. This is so because the repayment of the loan amount that is taken up by the lender is assured. The money can be retrieved even when the repayment is not made. Deals are also available for the borrowers with a bad credit history.

Any need of borrowers which requires monetary help can be fulfilled using secured loans UK. An amount in the range of 500075000 is available to the borrower for needs like debt consolidation home improvement car purchase wedding expenses educational funding vacation expenses etc.

By pledging collateral for the money the borrower in no way risks his asset. The term of repayment for these loans is 525 years which is a long and comfortable time for the borrower. This is coupled with a lower rate of interest which helps the borrower in repaying the monthly installments without much difficulty.

Secured loans UK make it easy for the borrowers who own assets to fulfill their wishes and needs. Low rate offered with these loans does not cause a burden on them.

The Immigration and Nationality Act provides a yearly minimum of 140,000 employment-based immigrant visas which are divided into five preference categories. They may require a labor certification from the U.S. Department of Labor (DOL), and the filing of a petition with United States Citizenship and Immigration Services in the Department of Homeland Security (USCIS).

Employment Based Immigration Categories

Employment First Preference (E1)

Priority Workers receive 28.6 percent of the yearly worldwide limit. All Priority Workers must be the beneficiaries of an approved Form I- 140, Immigrant Petition for Foreign Worker, filed with USCIS. Within this preference there are three sub-groups:

Persons of extraordinary ability in the sciences, arts, education, business, or athletics. Applicants in this category must have extensive documentation showing sustained national or international acclaim and recognition in the field of expertise. Such applicants do not have to have a specific job offer so long as they are entering the U.S. to continue work in the field in which they have extraordinary ability. Such applicants can file their own petition with the USCIS, rather than through an employer;

Outstanding professors and researchers with at least three years experience in teaching or research, who are recognized internationally. No labor certification is required for this classification, but the prospective employer must provide a job offer and file a petition with the USCIS; andCertain executives and managers who have been employed at least one of the three preceding years by the overseas affiliate, parent, subsidiary, or branch of the U.S. employer. The applicant must be coming to work in a managerial or executive capacity. No labor certification is required for this classification, but the prospective employer must provide a job offer and file a petition with the USCIS.

Employment Second Preference (E2)

Professionals Holding Advanced Degrees, or Persons of Exceptional Ability in the Arts, Sciences, or Business receive 28.6 percent of the yearly worldwide limit, plus any unused Employment First Preference visas. All Second Preference applicants must have a labor certification approved by the DOL, or Schedule A designation, or establish that they qualify for one of the shortage occupations in the Labor Market Information Pilot Program (later). A job offer is required and the U.S. employer must file a petition on behalf of the applicant. Aliens may apply for exemption from the job offer and labor certification if the exemption would be in the national interest, in which case the alien may file the petition, Form I-140, along with evidence of the national interest. There are two subgroups within this category:

Professionals holding an advanced degree (beyond a baccalaureate degree), or a baccalaureate degree and at least five years progressive experience in the profession; and

Persons with exceptional ability in the arts, sciences, or business. Exceptional ability means having a degree of expertise significantly above that ordinarily encountered within the field.

Employment Third Preference (E3)

Skilled Workers, Professionals Holding Baccalaureate Degrees and Other Workers receive 28.6 percent of the yearly worldwide limit, plus any unused Employment First and Second Preference visas. All Third Preference applicants require an approved I-140 petition filed by the prospective employer. All such workers require a labor certification, or Schedule A designation, or evidence that they qualify for one of the shortage occupations in the Labor Market Information Pilot Program. There are three subgroups within this category:

Skilled workers are persons capable of performing a job requiring at least two years” training or experience;

Professionals with a baccalaureate degree are members of a profession with at least a university bachelor”s degree; and

Other workers are those persons capable of filling positions requiring less than two years” training or experience.

Employment Fourth Preference (E4)

Special Immigrants receive 7.1 percent of the yearly worldwide limit. All such applicants must be the beneficiary of an approved I-360, Petition for Special Immigrant, except overseas employees of the U.S. Government who must use Form DS-1884. Certain spouses and children may accompany or follow-to-join the principal special immigrant. Different types of special immigrants provided for under immigrant law are listed below:

  1. Broadcaster in the U.S. employed by the International Broadcasting Bureau of the Broadcasting Board of Governors or a grantee of such organization;
  2. Minister of Religion;
  3. Certain Employees or Former Employees of the U.S. Government Abroad;
  4. Employee of the Mission in Hong Kong;
  5. Certain Former Employees of the Panama Canal Company or Canal Zone Government;
  6. Certain Former Employees of the U.S. Government in the Panama Canal Zone;
  7. Certain Former Employees of the Panama Canal Company or Canal Zone Government on April 1, 1979;
  8. Interpreters and translators of Iraqi or Afghani nationality who have worked directly with the United States armed forces as a translator for a period of 12 months. This classification has an annual numeric limitation of fifty visas.
  9. Certain Foreign Medical Graduates (Adjustments Only);
  10. Certain Retired International Organization employees;
  11. Certain Spouses of a deceased International Organization Employee;
  12. Juvenile Court Dependent (no family member derivatives);
  13. Alien Recruited Outside of the United States Who Has Served or is Enlisted to Serve in the U.S. Armed Forces;
  14. Certain retired NATO-6 civilians;
  15. Certain surviving spouses of deceased NATO-6 civilian employees;
  16. Alien beneficiary of a petition or labor certification application filed prior to Sept. 11, 2001, if the petition or application was rendered void due to a terrorist act of Sept. 11, 2001;
  17. Certain Religious Workers.


Employment Fifth Preference (E5)

Employment Creation Investors receive 7.1 percent of the yearly worldwide limit. All applicants must file a Form I-526, Immigrant Petition by Alien Entrepreneur with USCIS. To qualify, an alien must invest between U.S. $500,000 and $1,000,000, depending on the employment rate in the geographical area, in a commercial enterprise in the United States which creates at least 10 new full-time jobs for U.S. citizens, permanent resident aliens, or other lawful immigrants, not including the investor and his or her family.


A person whose occupation requires a labor certification must have prearranged employment in the United States.

Individual Labor Certification/PERM

Effective March 28, 2005, the applicant must complete DOL Form ETA-9089 online.  Detailed information on this Program is available at the Deparment of Labor’s website.

Schedule A Designation

The Department of Labor has made a schedule of occupations for which it delegates authority to USCIS to approve labor certifications. Schedule A, Group I, includes physical therapists and nurses. Schedule A, Group II includes aliens of exceptional ability in the sciences and arts (except performing arts). To apply for Schedule A designation, the employer must submit a completed, uncertified Form ETA-9089 in duplicate to USCIS along with the I-140 petition.

Labor Market Information Pilot Program

The Immigration Act of 1990 provides for the DOL to establish a Labor Market Information Pilot Program which will define up to ten occupational classifications in which there are labor shortages. For aliens within a listed shortage occupation, a labor certification will be deemed to have been issued for purposes of an employment-based immigrant petition. USCIS can provide further information.


All intending immigrants who plan to base their immigrant visa application on employment in the United States must obtain an approved immigrant visa petition from USCIS. If a necessary labor certification is granted, the employer may then file a Form I-140, Petition for Prospective Immigrant Employee, with USCIS for the appropriate employment-based preference category.


The immigration laws of the United States, in order to protect the health, welfare, and security of the U.S., prohibit the issuance of a visa to certain applicants. Examples of applicants who must be refused visas are those who: have a communicable disease, or have a dangerous physical or mental disorder; have committed serious criminal acts; are terrorists, subversives, members of a totalitarian party, or former Nazi war criminals; have used illegal means to enter the U.S.; or are ineligible for citizenship. Some former exchange visitors must live abroad for two years. Physicians who intend to practice medicine must pass a qualifying exam before receiving immigrant visas. If found to be ineligible, the consular officer will advise the applicant of any waivers.


Documents for Visa Application

All applicants must submit certain personal documents such as passports, birth certificates, police certificates, and other civil documents, as well as evidence that they will not become public charges in the United States. The consular officer will inform visa applicants of the documents needed as their applications are processed.

Medical Examinations

Before the issuance of an immigrant visa, every applicant, regardless of age, must undergo a medical examination. The examination will be conducted by a doctor designated by the consular officer. Examination costs must be borne by the applicant, in addition to the visa fees.

Visa Fees

The cost of each immigrant visa application processing fee (per person) is (US) $335. Fees must be paid for each intending immigrant, regardless of age, and are not refundable. Local currency equivalents are acceptable. Fees should not be sent to the consular office unless requested specifically. USCIS charges additional fees for filing petitions.

Numerical Limitations

Whenever there are more qualified applicants for a category than there are available numbers, the category will be considered oversubscribed, and immigrant visas will be issued in the chronological order in which the petitions were filed until the numerical limit for the category is reached. The filing date of a petition becomes the applicant”s priority date. Immigrant visas cannot be issued until an applicant”s priority date is reached. In certain heavily oversubscribed categories, there may be a waiting period of several years before a priority date is reached. Check the Visa Bulletin for the latest priority dates.


Since no advance assurances can be given that a visa will be issued, applicants are advised not to make any final travel arrangements, not to dispose of their property, and not to give up their jobs until visas have been issued to them. An immigrant visa can be valid for six months from issuance date.

With few exceptions, a person born in the United States has a claim to U.S. citizenship. Persons born in countries other than the U.S. may have a claim, under United States law, to U.S. nationality if either parent was: