To the friends and clients of Akst & Akst:
The President’s new Executive Order suspending the issuance of immigrant visas is not as far reaching as first indicated in his late-night tweet from two days ago.
It has been narrowed and modified from the original far-reaching ban that was first dramatically announced. We have set forth and highlighted the relevant parts of this new order below.
The suspension and limitation on entry pursuant to section 1 of this proclamation shall apply only to aliens who:
(i) are outside the United States on the effective date of this proclamation;
(ii) do not have an immigrant visa that is valid on the effective date of this proclamation; and
(iii) 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.
b) The suspension and limitation on entry pursuant to section 1 of this proclamation shall not apply to:
(i) any lawful permanent resident of the United States;
(ii) any alien seeking to enter the United States on an immigrant visa as a physician, nurse, or other healthcare professional; to perform medical research or other research intended to combat the spread of COVID-19; or to perform work essential to combating, recovering from, or otherwise alleviating the effects of the COVID-19 outbreak, as determined by the Secretary of State, the Secretary of Homeland Security, or their respective designees; and any spouse and unmarried children under 21 years old of any such alien who are accompanying or following to join the alien;
(iii) any alien applying for a visa to enter the United States pursuant to the EB-5 Immigrant Investor Program;
(iv) any alien who is the spouse of a United States citizen;
(v) any alien who is under 21 years old and is the child of a United States citizen, or who is a prospective adoptee seeking to enter the United States pursuant to the IR-4 or IH-4 visa classifications;
(vi) any alien whose entry would further important United States law enforcement objectives, as determined by the Secretary of State, the Secretary of Homeland Security, or their respective designees, based on a recommendation of the Attorney General or his designee;
(vii) any member of the United States Armed Forces and any spouse and children of a member of the United States Armed Forces;
(viii) any alien seeking to enter the United States pursuant to a Special Immigrant Visa in the SI or SQ classification, subject to such conditions as the Secretary of State may impose, and any spouse and children of any such individual; or (ix) any alien whose entry would be in the national interest, as determined by the Secretary of State, the Secretary of Homeland Security, or their respective designees.
This suspension is in effect for 60 days from April 23, 2020.
In summary, this Executive Order applies only to individuals who are outside the United States on the effective date of this proclamation;
It does not affect Adjustment of Status processing or other USCIS benefits issued for those already in the US. (These processes will continue).
It does not affect those who already have an immigrant visa or other valid travel. Non-immigrant visas are also exempt from this Order-so far.