Law Office of Leila Freijy PLLC
Immigration & Compliance Law 
Executive Order Protecting the Nation Against Terrorists
On 01/27/2017 the President signed another executive order (EO) that will limit even legal immigration and will impact international travel for many individuals, including those who are U.S. Permanent Residents (green card holders). 

This executive order, available for your review here, has been widely discussed in the media over the last few days, so I will focus on the business-related aspects first as this EO will impact U.S businesses and some of their employees.
Suspension of Visas and Admissions to Individuals from Certain Muslim Countries
  • 90 day suspension of issuance of all non-immigrant and immigrant visas to individuals from Iran, Iraq, Libya, Syria, Sudan, Somalia and Yemen.
  • 90 day suspension of admissions to the U.S. by individuals from these seven countries, even for those who already have valid visas or green cards, and who may have been living in the U.S for years.
  • The term "from" has not been defined.  It clearly applies to citizens and nationals of these countries.  It apparently also applies to dual-citizens.  It is unclear whether it also applies to citizens of other countries who were born in one of the countries listed.
  • According to the EO additional countries may be added to this list at any time.
  • RECOMMENDATION:  If you are "from" any Muslim country, including green card holders, I recommend that you remain in the U.S. even if it means canceling upcoming international travel plans, including those to Canada and Mexico.  If you are currently outside the U.S. you should return at once and let me know when you returning.

Indefinite Suspension of Visa Waiver Program (VWP)

  • For many years now, the VWP has permitted individuals from certainly, low-risk, low-fraud countries to enter the U.S. as visitors for business or pleasure without having to first apply for a visitor visa in their passports.  This currently applies to 38, mostly European countries.  It allows for a stay in the U.S. of up to 90 days.
  • Effective 01/27/217, the VWP has been suspended indefinitely.  This means that all visitors to the U.S. must first apply for, and obtain, B1/B2 visa stamps in their passports before they will be permitted to enter the U.S.
  • This will impact business visitors coming to the U.S. for business meetings, conferences and training opportunities.
  • RECOMMENDATION:  Immediately instruct any planned visitors from these countries to schedule visa appointments at their U.S. Consulates abroad.  This change will likely result in extended visa processing times at U.S. Consulates within the Visa Waiver countries.
  • There is also a possibility that these countries, which allow U.S. citizens to travel to their countries visa-free, may also implement visa requirements for U.S. citizens.

Additional Immigration Procedures

  • The EO will implement additional screening for all immigration programs, including: in-person interviews,  establishment of a database of identity documents presented by applicants, evaluation of an applicant's likelihood of becoming a positively contributing member of society, and an evaluation of possible future contributions to the national interest. 
  • While there is no additional official information at this time, this could result in lengthier adjudications requiring personal interviews and may impact family immigration.


  • The EO suspends Syrian refugee admissions indefinitely.
  • The EO suspends refugee admissions from all other countries for 120 days.
  • The EO will limit refugee admissions to the U.S. to 50,000 during FY17, which ends on 09/30/2017.
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If you have any questions or concerns about the information provided in this email, please don't hesitate to contact me.




Leila Freijy
Law Office of Leila Freijy PLLC