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COVID-19 Temporary Visas

Routine Visa Appointment Availability in China

June 24 update: Bloomberg is reporting that dozens of U.S. diplomats are preparing to return to Beijing next month. Reportedly, some are concerned that the Chinese government could have access to their DNA samples from COVID-19 testing. And some are concerned that dependent family members may be separated if they test positive. June 20: The…

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COVID-19

Trump Issues Proclamation Suspending Entry of Aliens Presenting a Risk to the U.S. Labor Market

President Trump on June 22 issued a Proclamation expanding on his prior Apr. 23 Proclamation Suspending Entry of Immigrants Who Present Risk to the U.S. Labor Market During the Economic Recovery Following the COVID-19 Outbreak. You can think of this as Proclamation version 2.0. Extension of Ban on Certain Immigrants Version 1.0 banned the entry…

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COVID-19

June 17 Update: U.S. State Dep’t Suspends Routine Visa Services Worldwide

The State Department has announced that routine visas services remain suspended at U.S. posts worldwide, but as resources allow, embassies and consulates will continue to provide emergency and mission critical visa services.  Mission-critical immigrant visa categories may include applicants who may be eligible for an exception under the Presidential Proclamation Suspending Entry of Immigrants Who Present Risk to the U.S.…

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COVID-19

USCIS May Furlough Employees Because of Budget Shortfall

Officials at USCIS told employees last month that the agency may soon be unable to meet payroll. Management has estimated it will run out of funds to operate normally on Aug. 3. About 15,000 USCIS employees may be furloughed in 30-day increments, according to Government Executive. That represents three quarters of the agency’s workforce. The…

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COVID-19

Diplomatic Tussle Continues Over U.S.-China Flights

China has made some concessions, apparently in response to a June 3 Trump administration order that would bar four Chinese passenger carriers from operating into and out of the U.S. effective June 16. Four Chinese carriers have maintained flights to and from the U.S. in recent weeks. They are Air China, China Eastern, China Southern…

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COVID-19

USCIS Prepares to Resume Public Services on June 4

U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services is preparing some domestic offices to reopen and resume non-emergency public services on or after June 4.

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COVID-19

Apr. 24 Update: USCIS Suspends In-Person Services Until at Least June 4

On Apr. 24, USCIS announced that USCIS offices are preparing to reopen “on or after June 4”: On March 18, U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services temporarily suspended in-person services at its field offices, asylum offices, and application support centers (ASCs) to help slow the spread of coronavirus (COVID-19). USCIS is readying offices to reopen on…

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COVID-19 Employment-Based Immigration Family Immigration

Trump Suspends Entry of Immigrants Who Are “Risk” to Labor Market

President Trump has published the Executive Order suspending immigration that he tweeted was forthcoming. Effective Date: The proclamation becomes effective on Thursday, April 23, 2020 at 11:59 PM (ET). Whose Entry Is Suspended? The order suspends the entry of any individual seeking to enter the U.S. as an immigrant who: Is outside the United States…

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COVID-19 Uncategorized

Trump Tweets of Plan to “Suspend Immigration”

Apr. 23 Update: President Trump just issued the executive order suspending immigration he tweeted about. See Trump Suspends Entry of Immigrants Who Are “Risk” to Labor Market. So President Trump has announced on Twitter that he intends to issue an Executive Order that will “suspend immigration” in light of how COVID-19 has devastated the economy:…

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COVID-19 Employment-Based Immigration Family Immigration

Applying for a Replacement or New Immigrant Visa

An immigrant visa is generally valid for a period of up to 6 months. You must enter the U.S. within this 6-month period.[1] Consular officers do not have the authority to extend the validity of an immigrant visa (IV). But, as explained below, it may be possible to apply for a replacement or new IV.…

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COVID-19

COVID-19 and the Public Charge Rule

Here are key points on COVID-19 and the public charge rule: 1. Will getting tested, treatment or preventative care for COVID-19 impact my client’s immigration application under the public charge rule? On March 13, the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) announced that the agency will not consider “testing, treatment, nor preventative care (including vaccines,…

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COVID-19 Maintaining LPR Status During Stays Abroad

Green Card Holders Staying Abroad Over 6 Months Risk Abandonment

What do you need to do to preserve your status as a lawful permanent resident (LPR)? This question is now critical for persons unable to travel due to the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic or related travel restrictions. If you are abroad for 6 months or more per year, you risk “abandoning” your green card. This is especially…

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COVID-19

Emergency Visa Appointments for Medical Professionals

On Mar. 26, 2020, the U.S. State Department announced: We encourage medical professionals with an approved U.S. non-immigrant or immigrant visa petition (I-129, I-140, or similar) or a certificate of eligibility in an approved exchange visitor program (DS-2019), particularly those working to treat or mitigate the effects of COVID-19, to review the website of their…

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COVID-19

China: Temporary Suspension of Entry by Foreign Nationals Holding Valid Visas

China’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs has announced: Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the People’s Republic of China National Immigration Administration Announcement on the Temporary Suspension of Entry by Foreign Nationals Holding Valid Chinese Visas or Residence Permits March 26, 2020 In view of the rapid spread of COVID-19 across the world, China has decided to…

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COVID-19

U.S. State Department Compiles Country-Specific Information on COVID-19

In response to the concerns brought on by the spread of COVID-19, commonly referred to as the Coronavirus, certain U.S. consular posts have begun alerting applicants of reduced or temporarily suspended visa services. In an attempt to keep stakeholders apprised, the Department of State has compiled a list of embassy websites for country-specific information concerning…

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COVID-19

Regular U.S. Visa Services in China Suspended Due to the Coronavirus Outbreak; Emergency Appointments Available

The U.S. Mission in China states on its website that: Regular visa services at the U.S Embassy in Beijing and the U.S. Consulates General in Chengdu, Guangzhou, Shanghai and Shenyang are suspended. Due to the ongoing situation relating to the novel coronavirus, the U.S. Embassy and Consulates have very limited staffing and may be unable…

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COVID-19 Uncategorized

Feb. 4 Update: Trump Bans Entry of Noncitizens Present in China During Prior 2 Weeks

President Trump has issued a Jan. 31 proclamation barring entry to the U.S. of noncitizens present in China during the two weeks prior to attempting to enter the U.S. CBP has issued a Feb. 4 Notification of Arrival Restrictions Applicable to Flights Carrying Persons Who Have Recently Traveled from or Were Otherwise Present Within the…

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COVID-19 Waivers / Visa Denials

U.S. Airports to Screen Wuhan Flights for Coronavirus

The CDC has announced: The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and the Department of Homeland Security’s Customs and Border Protection (CBP) will implement enhanced health screenings to detect ill travelers traveling to the United States on direct or connecting flights from Wuhan, China. This activity is in response to an outbreak in China…