News and Updates

Summary of the June 22 Presidential Proclamation

June 22, 2020

President Trump issued a NEW proclamation on June 22, 2020. This proclamation EXTENDS the previously issued Presidential Proclamation from April 22, 2020. This proclamation FURTHER suspends Entry of foreign nationals on certain employment-based non-immigrant visas into the United States. Read it here.

This proclamation is effective at 12:01 am (ET) on June 24, 2020. It will remain in effect through December 31, 2020 and may be continued.

This proclamation applies to individuals who:

  1. Are outside of the United States on the effective date of this proclamation;
  2. Do not have a non-immigrant visa that is valid on the effective date of this proclamation; and
  3. Do not have an official travel document other than a visa valid on the effective date or issued thereafter that permits admission to the United States.

This proclamation suspends the following:

  1. H-1B and their family accompanying/following to join
  2. H-2B and their family accompanying/following to join
  3. J visa (interns, trainees, teachers, camp counselors, au pairs, summer work-travel programs, and their family accompanying/following to join)
  4. L visa and their family accompanying/following to join

The proclamation includes several exemptions:

  1. Current green card holders
  2. Spouses and children of U.S. citizens
  3. Temporary labor essential to U.S. food supply chain
  4. Aliens whose entry would be in the U.S. national interest
  5. Those seeking asylum, refugee status, withholding of removal or protection under Convention Against Torture

Major Takeaways:

  1. The following categories of foreign nationals will NOT be granted green cards through consular processing until December 31, 2020:
  • Parents of U.S. citizens
  • Siblings of U.S. citizens
  • Adult sons/daughters of U.S. citizens
  • Spouses of permanent residents
  • Minor children of permanent residents
  • Green card lottery winners


2. The following non-immigrant employment visas will NOT be granted through consular processing until December 31, 2020:

  • H-1B
  • H-2B
  • J Visas
  • L Visas

3. If you are already in the United States and are applying to change, extend, or adjust your status, then you may continue to do so.

4. You CAN still submit petitions to the USCIS and proceed through the NVC stage. However, after your case has been transferred to the consulate/embassy abroad, you will be UNABLE to move further until this proclamation has expired.

Did you miss it? Replay here.

Catch Attorney Jafri on MAS DAILY FOCUS as we discuss the latest immigration ban and more.

When: April 23, 2020 at 3:30 PM PST

Where: https://www.muslimamericansociety.org/focus/

WHAT DOES TRUMP'S LATEST PROCLAMATION MEAN?

April 23, 2020

President Trump issued a proclamation "Suspending Entry of Immigrants Who Present Risk to the U.S. Labor Market During the Economic Recovery Following the COVID-19 Outbreak." Read it here.

This proclamation is effective at 11:59 pm (ET) on April 23, 2020. The proclamation will expire 60 days from its effective date and may be continued.

Per the proclamation, the suspension and limitation on entry pursuant to section 1 of this proclamation applies to individuals who:

  1. are outside the United States on the effective date of this proclamation;
  2. do not have an immigrant visa that is valid on the effective date of this proclamation; and
  3. do not have an official travel document other than a visa (such as a transportation letter, an appropriate boarding foil, or an advance parole document) that is valid on the effective date of this proclamation or issued on any date thereafter that permits him or her to travel to the United States and seek entry or admission.

The proclamation includes several exemptions:

  1. Current green card holders
  2. Doctors/nurses/other healthcare professionals, medical researchers, and others working to combat spread of Covid-19, and their spouses and children under 21
  3. EB-5 investors
  4. Spouses of U.S. citizens
  5. Children under 21 of a U.S. citizen, or adoptees
  6. Those furthering U.S. law enforcement objectives
  7. Any member of US Armed Forces, and their spouses and children
  8. Special Immigrant Visas (SIVs) for Iraqi and Afghan Translators/Interpreters
  9. Aliens whose entry would be in the U.S. national interest
  10. Those seeking asylum, refugee status, withholding of removal or protection under Convention Against Torture

Major Takeaways:

  1. Parents of U.S. citizens ARE AFFECTED.
  2. Siblings of U.S. citizens ARE AFFECTED.
  3. Adult sons/daughters of U.S. citizens ARE AFFECTED.
  4. Spouses and minor children of permanent residents ARE AFFECTED.
  5. Green card lottery winners ARE AFFECTED.
  6. Adjustment of status applicants are NOT AFFECTED. This means people processing for green cards from within the U.S. may continue to do so.
  7. The total number of people getting green cards will likely be the same in the end.
  8. This is incredibly cruel to those who have been waiting patiently for YEARS to enter.
  9. This will not magically create jobs for the 22 million Americans currently out of work.

What do you do when your immigrant visa foil is about to expire and you are unable to travel to the u.s. due to covid-19?

April 16, 2020

You've completed the entire process, from petitions with the USCIS, visa applications with the NVC, interviews with the Consulate, and finally have the immigrant visa foil in your passport. Unfortunately, due to COVID-19 travel restrictions, you are stuck waiting abroad and unable to travel to the U.S. All the consular posts have suspended routine services and your immigrant visa foil is about to expire. What do you do?

Typically, an immigrant visa is issued for a period of validity no longer than six months. Since this maximum period is set by regulations, consular officers do not have the authority to extend visa validity.

However, on March 5, 2020, the Department of State informed AILA's DOS Liaison Committee:

"...[I]f an immigrant visa has been issued but the applicant cannot travel to the U.S. due to coronavirus-related travel restrictions, a consular post may be able to re-print a visa foil once travel again becomes possible. Consulates should be able to issue a new visa foil provided that all supporting documents, such as police certificates, medical examinations, etc., have not expired. Where any of the supporting documents expire while an immigrant is waiting to be able to travel to the U.S., the applicant will be required to obtain new supporting documents prior to the issuance of a new visa foil."

So at this point in time, you should:

  1. Retain all supporting documents
  2. Renew any supporting documents that have expired
  3. Wait for travel restrictions to be lifted, and for consular posts to resume routine services
  4. Contact the consulate to schedule an appointment to request a new visa foil

Source: AILA Doc. No. 20032034

What are your options if your nonimmigrant period of stay is about to expire during COVID-19 delays?

April 13, 2020

1. Apply for an Extension of Status or Change of Status before your period of stay expires!

Nonimmigrants generally do not accrue unlawful presence when the extension/change is timely-filed. Work permits with the same employer and same terms as the prior approval will be AUTOMATICALLY extended for up to 240 days after the I-94 expiration if filed timely.

2. Flexibility for Late Applications

If you are unable to file for an extension/change before your stay expires, the USCIS will exercise its discretion on a case by case basis, and may excuse the late filing if the delay was due to extraordinary circumstances beyond your control. Be sure to include credible evidence to document the extraordinary circumstances.

3. Flexibility for Visa Waiver Entrants

Visa Waiver Program (VWP) entrants cannot extend/change status. If you are prevented from leaving due to COVID-19, USCIS may grant you an additional 30 days to depart. If you cannot leave during that time, they may temporarily provide an additional 30 days to depart. To request this extra time, contact USCIS.

Source: USCIS (COVID-19 Delays Extension/Change of Status Filings )