Wednesday, September 27, 2017

Presidential Proclamation Outlines New Travel Restrictions

On September 25, 2017 the Trump Administration unveiled new travel restrictions on certain foreign nationals from eight countries: Chad, Iran, Libya, North Korea, Somalia, Syria, Venezuela and Yemen.  The restrictions vary by country, with foreign nationals from:
North KoreaSyria - Entry as immigrant and nonimmigrants suspended;
Chad, Yemen, Libya – Entry as immigrants and nonimmigrants on some business and tourist visas suspended;
Somalia – Entry as immigrants suspended, and nonimmigrants traveling to the U.S. to face enhanced screening and vetting requirements;
Iran – Entry as immigrants and nonimmigrants suspended, except under valid student and exchange visitor visas, with enhanced screening and vetting requirements; and
Venezuela – Entry of certain Venezuelan government officials and their immediate family members as nonimmigrants on some business and tourist visas suspended.
The new travel order allows consular officers the discretion to waive the new restrictions on a case-by-case basis should the foreign national demonstrate that being denied entry to the U.S. would cause “undue hardship” and is not a threat to national security.  Unlike the previous travel ban Executive Order, which placed a temporary bar on travel from specified countries for 90 days, the new Presidential Proclamation is indefinite and condition-based.   Individuals with the “bona fide” relationship previously defined by the first travel ban can still apply for visas until October 18, 2017, after which date the new travel restrictions will begin.
The Supreme Court was scheduled to hear arguments on the legality of the travel ban, however, because of this new Proclamation, the Supreme Court has canceled oral arguments and is requesting that both sides submit briefs addressing whether the case is now moot.  Travel restrictions from the President’s Travel Ban Executive Order, and his most recent Proclamation, are an ongoing issue for foreign nationals, and our firm will continue to closely follow any further developments. 

For more information, please see the FAQ released by the White House.  For specific questions pertaining to your personal situation, please contact the SIL attorney with whom you have been working. 

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