The Non-Immigrant WORKER Visa Travel Ban is No Longer a Prediction
The Proclamation was passed!
There was much speculation regarding a new Presidential Proclamation to be announced on June 15th, 2020. This caused fear and anxiety for those looking to move to the US-based on employment and in the immigration community. As expected, President Trump signed on June 22nd, 2020, apresidential proclamation:“Suspension of Entry of Immigrants and Nonimmigrants who present a Risk to the United States Labour Market During the Economic Recovery Following the 2019 Novel Coronavirus Outbreak” also known as “Nonimmigrant Proclamation”. This extended the duration of his prior suspension of immigrant visas and created a new suspension for those seeking entry across nonimmigrant visas that will come into effect on June 24th 2020.
Covid-19 has impacted the world drastically on a health and economic level and President Trump has decided to focus on helping the US market rebuild within America first. This was deemed necessary in order to reduce any competition for the U.S. workforce during the economic struggle and high unemployment rates created due to the pandemic outbreak. The initial Presidential Proclamation 10014 passed on April 22, 2020, did not include the suspension of entry towards nonimmigrant visas, which this new proclamation did. As seen in Section 2 (a,b,c) of the nonimmigrant proclamation that will be in place until December 31, 2020 (with potential extensions) the nonimmigrant visa categories include H-1B, H-2B, L intracompany transferees, and J1 trainees and interns.
There has been NO mention of E category nonimmigrant visas. Both E1 and E2 categories include Trade and Investment Treaties. The E Visa Category brings trade and investment to the US economy as well as ensures US employment, hence separating it from other nonimmigrant categories.
The new extent proclamation includes individuals who fall under the following three requirements:
- Those outside the United States on the effective date (June 24, 2020);
- Do not hold a nonimmigrant visa valid on the effective date
- Do not hold an official travel document other than a visa
The Nonimmigrant Proclamation does not affect individuals seeking asylum, refugee status, or other forms of humanitarian relief.
The new proclamation is not retroactive meaning that those already holding visas will not be affected and those already on H1b, L1’s, H2b, or J visas will not be barred from extending or renewing their visas while the new Nonimmigrant Proclamation is in place.
This should limit some damage that will be caused to employers who depend on these employees. Though evidently many individuals who are affected by this new ban, have already been struggling since the all U.S. Embassies and Consulates have been closed or working on a limited basis since March 2020 and have almost completely stopped the issuance of U.S. visas.
It is to note that the nonimmigrant proclamation explicitly exempts the following individuals:
- U.S. lawful permanent residents (aka green cardholders).
- The spouse or children of a U.S. citizen.
- Foreign nationals seeking entry for “temporary labour or services essential to the United States food supply chain”.
- Foreign nationals whose entry would “be in the national interest as determined by the Secretary of State, the Secretary of Homeland Security”.
In such an unprecedented time, we recommend that if you are in the United States, not to travel abroad if your immigration status is still in process. If you are outside the United States, you may not be able to return during the designated period.
Sklar Law Offices will closely monitor the situation and provide you with further information and updates.
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