President Trump, on June 22, 2020 signed a Proclamation that put a ban on H-1B and Green Card processing for foreign nationals outside the United States.
The U.S. Department of State, agency responsible for issuing visas at the consulates, on July 20, 2020 released National Interest Exceptions to the Presidential Proclamation that may include –
Primary Applicants – for individuals traveling on H-1B, L-1 or J-1 in relation to foreign policy objectives (COVID-19 etc.) or at the request of the U.S. government.
Immediate Dependents – for individuals on H-4, L-2 & J-2 visas (spouses & children), given that the primary visa holder is already in the U.S.
Others – individuals who are “aging out of their current immigration visa classification” before the proclamations expire or within two weeks after the expiration.
As of July 20, 2020 only the Department of State has confirmed these exceptions. U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP), agency that determines eligibility at the port of entry, hasn’t acknowledged that it recognizes these exceptions.
If the above exceptions make you eligible to travel into the U.S. then you may schedule a visa appointment at your nearest U.S. consulate. Given the pandemic situation, most consulates are operating at a limited capacity and so that availability might still be an issue. If you have any questions about how these exceptions impact your or your dependent’s status, reach out to your employer’s partner immigration firm or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Content in this publication is not intended as legal advice, nor should it be relied on as such. For additional information on the issues discussed, consult a WayLit-affiliated attorney or another qualified professional.