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 on the effective date of the proclamation;
- Does not have a valid immigrant visa on the effective date; and
- Does not have a valid official travel document (such as a transportation letter, boarding foil, or advance parole document) on the effective date, or issued on any date thereafter that permits travel to the United States to seek entry or admission.
Exemptions: The following categories of immigrants are exempted from the proclamation:
- Lawful permanent residents (LPR)
- 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 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 a visa to enter the U.S. pursuant to the EB-5 immigrant investor visa program
- 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 (AG), 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).
Discretion. It is within the discretion of the consular officer to determine if an individual is within one of the exempted categories outlined above.
What does the Executive Order NOT Do?
- Nonimmigrant visa holders are not included in the proclamation. 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.
- K-1 Fiancé(e)s: Technically, a K-1 fiancé(e) is not an “immigrant,” per sections 101(a)(15), 101(a)(15)(K) of the Immigration and Nationality Act, so the best interpretation of the Order is that it does not cover K-1s. Still, the purpose of a K-1 is to enter the U.S. for purpose of immigrating, so it’s not clear how the State Department will interpret the Order.
- Immigration Petitions: The ban does not stop U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) from receiving and processing immigration-related petitions, such as Forms I-130, Petitions for Alien Relatives; Forms I-140, Immigrant Petitions for Alien Workers; or Forms I-526, Petitions for Alien Entrepreneurs.
- National Visa Center: The National Visa Center is responsible for preliminary processing of immigrant visa applications, including collecting the application form, fee, and supporting documents. The order does not impact the NVC’s work, except that NVC will not schedule immigrant visa appointments for persons covered by the Order.
- Adjustment of Status: The Order does not stop USCIS from receiving and processing Forms I-485, Applications to Adjust Status.
- Asylum seekers are not included in the ban. The proclamation states that it does not limit the ability of individuals to apply for asylum, refugee status, withholding of removal or protection under the Convention Against Torture.
Prioritized Removal. Individuals who circumvent the application of this proclamation through fraud, willful misrepresentation or illegal entry will be prioritized for removal.
Expiration. The proclamation expires 60 days from its effective date and may be continued as necessary. Within 50 days from the effective date, the Secretary of DHS shall, in consultation with the Secretaries of State and Labor, recommend whether the President should continue or modify the proclamation.
Authority: Immigration and Nationality Act sections 212(f) and 215(a) and 3 U.S.C. section 301
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