President Trump’s Executive Order to Temporarily Suspend Immigration into the United States
On April 22, 2020, President Trump issued an Executive Order temporarily suspending immigration into the United States as a result of the 2019 novel coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic.
The Executive Order expressly states that President Trump has “determined that the entry, during the next 60 days, of certain aliens as immigrants would be detrimental to the interests of the United States.”
Effective date: 11:59 PM EST on Thursday, April 23rd
Expiration date: The Executive Order expires in 60 days (06/23/2020), but it may be extended
Scope: The Executive Order only applies to those individuals outside of the United States seeking entry as permanent residents (via immigrant visas) through consular processing abroad.
This Executive Order will affect individuals who, as of April 23, 2020:
- Are outside the United States;
- do not have a valid immigrant visa; and
- do not have a valid official travel document (such as a transportation letter, boarding foil, or advance parole document), or a document issued after April 23, 2020 that permits travel to the United States to seek entry or admission
This Executive Order will affect the following individuals:
- Spouses and children of lawful permanent residents (LPRs), son and daughters older than 21 of LPRs or U.S. citizens, siblings of U.S. citizens seeking a green card through consular process,
- Individuals seeking entry through employment-based immigrant visas
- Lottery Visas
This Executive Order will NOT affect the following individuals:
- Lawful permanent residents (LPRs)
- Individuals and their spouses or children seeking to enter the U.S. on an immigrant visa as a physician, nurse, or other healthcare professional to perform work essential to combatting, recovering from, or otherwise alleviating the effects of the COVID-19 outbreak (as determined by the Secretaries of State and Department of Homeland Security (DHS), or their respective designees)
- Individuals applying for an EB-5 visa as immigrant investors
- Spouses of U.S. citizens
- Children of U.S. citizens under the age of 21 and prospective adoptees seeking to enter on an IR-4 or IH-4 visa
- Individuals who would further important U.S. law enforcement objectives (as determined by the Secretaries of DHS and State based on the recommendation of the Attorney General, or their respective designees)
- Members of the U.S. Armed Forces and their spouses and children
- Individuals and their spouses or children eligible for Special Immigrant Visas as an Afghan or Iraqi translator/interpreter or U.S. Government Employee (SI or SQ classification)
- Individuals whose entry would be in the national interest (as determined by the Secretaries of State and DHS, or their respective designees).
Non-immigrant visas are not included in this Executive Order. However, the proclamation requires that within 30 days of the effective date, the Secretaries of Labor and DHS, in consultation with the Secretary of State, shall review nonimmigrant programs and recommend to the President other appropriate measures to stimulate the U.S. economy and ensure “the prioritization, hiring and employment” of U.S. workers.
- Routine visa services at all U.S. embassies and consular posts around the world have been suspended as of March 20, 2020. U.S. embassies and consulates continue to provide urgent and emergency visa services as resources allow. The Department of State (DOS) intends to continue to process visa applications for farm workers and medical professionals assisting with COVID-19.
- The U.S. borders with Canada and Mexico are closed for non-essential travel until at least May 20, 2020.
- With some exceptions, the entry of individuals who were present in China, Iran, the Schengen Area, the U.K., and Irenland, during the 14-day period before their attempted entry into the United States has also been suspended.
- Despite these limitations, USCIS continues to accept and process applications and petitions, including applications requesting an extension or change of status within the U.S.
Monty & Ramirez LLP is open for business
We are closely monitoring the situation and will reach out to clients who might be affected by the anticipated Executive Order. Please contact your M&R attorney, or our Immigration Section if you have any questions at 281-493-5529 or via email at email@example.com.