New Travel Ban Announced

New Travel Ban Announced

15:28 02 October in News Updates

The Trump Administration has unveiled new travel restrictions on certain citizens of Chad, Iran, Libya, North Korea, Somalia, Syria, Venezuela, and Yemen.  Restrictions vary by country as follows:

Countries included in the new travel ban:

Chad: Suspends the entry of immigrants and temporary visitors on business or tourist visas (B-1/B-2).

North Korea: Suspends the entry of all immigrants and nonimmigrants.

Venezuela: Suspends the entry of certain government officials and their immediate family members on business or tourist visas (B-1/B-2).

Countries included in the prior travel ban, which are also included in the new travel ban:

Iran: Suspends the entry of immigrants and all nonimmigrants, except F (student), M (vocational student) and J (exchange visitor) visas, though they will be subject to enhanced screening and vetting requirements.

Libya: Suspends the entry of immigrants and temporary visitors on business or tourist visas (B-1/B-2).

Somalia: Suspends the entry of immigrants, and requires enhanced screening and vetting of all nonimmigrants.

Syria: Suspends the entry of all immigrants and nonimmigrants.

Yemen: Suspends the entry of immigrants and temporary visitors on business or tourist visas (B-1/B-2).

Iraq: While not included in the ban per se, requires enhanced screening of all individuals seeking to enter the United States.

Travel restrictions for nationals of Sudan, who were impacted by earlier versions of the travel ban, have been lifted.

Effective Date

The new travel ban goes into effect on October 18, 2017, however, the ban is effective immediately for anyone whose entry to the U.S. was previously barred by the administration’s prior travel ban (EO 13780) (i.e., nationals of Iran, Libya, Somalia, Syria and Yemen who do not have a bona fide relationship with a person or entity in the United States).

Until October 18, 2017, citizens of Iran, Libya, Somalia, Syria, and Yemen are exempt from the new travel ban if they have a “bona fide relationship” with a U.S. person or entity.

Unless an exemption applies or an individual is eligible for a waiver, the travel ban restrictions apply to individuals of the designated countries who:

  • Are outside the U.S. on the applicable effective date;
  • Do not have a valid visa on the applicable effective date; and
  • Do not qualify for a reinstated visa or other travel document that was revoked under the prior travel ban.

The new travel ban does not apply to:

  • Lawful permanent residents of the U.S.;
  • Individuals admitted to or paroled into the U.S. on or after the effective date of the new travel ban;
  • Those with a document other than a visa that allows them to travel to the U.S. if the document is dated on/after the effective date of the new travel ban (such as an advance parole travel document);
  • Dual-nationals traveling on a passport from a non-designated country;
  • Individuals traveling on diplomatic visas, NATO visas, C-2/U.N. visas, or G-1, G-2, G-3 or G-4 visas;
  • Individuals granted asylum;
  • Refugees already admitted to the United States; or
  • Individuals granted withholding of removal, advance parole, or protection under the Convention Against Torture.

Waiver

A case-by-case waiver is available, but only for individuals who can show that being denied entry would cause undue hardship to the individual, that their entry would not pose a threat to U.S. national security or public safety and that their entry “would be in the national interest.”

Refugees

The new travel ban does not impose new restrictions on refugees, however, there continues to be a 120-day halt on the entire refugee program. Refugees with a “bona fide relationship” with a U.S. person or entity are exempt from the ban. Per the U.S. Supreme Court’s September 12, 2017 order, a formal assurance from a refugee resettlement agency is insufficient on its own to establish a “bona fide relationship.”

Duration

Unlike the administration’s prior travel bans, these new country-specific travel bans are indefinite. While federal agencies must assess the bans every 180 days and recommend whether to continue, terminate, or modify the bans, there is no automatic expiration date for the bans. The DHS Secretary must affirmatively recommend ending them.

Excerpts from AILA Doc. No. 17092633

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