Yesterday, the government officially announced the details of its “suspension” of immigration to the US. Upon reviewing the actual Proclamation, the effect is minimal and appears to be more of a political statement than a major policy or legal change.
Here are the main points:
- Only individuals who are seeking immigrant visas outside of the US at a US Embassy are affected.
- These individuals will not be able to obtain an immigrant visa until June 22, 2020 with the possibility of further extensions of this date. Since all US Embassies are effectively closed now due to the Coronavirus pandemic, this is not a meaningful development.
- Nonimmigrant visa applicants such as E-2, H-1B, L-1, O-1 visa candidates are not affected.
- The Proclamation does not apply to the following: lawful permanent residents; any person seeking to enter the United States as a physician, nurse, or other healthcare professional, or in healthcare position related to combatting COVID-19; any person entering the United States as an immigrant pursuant to the EB-5 program; any person who is the spouse of a U.S. citizen; any person who is under 21 and is the child of a U.S. citizen; or any person whose entry would be in the national interest.
- Individuals who already have an immigrant visa or travel authorization to the US are not affected.
Here is the link to the official Proclamation:
As you can see, the practical effects of the proclamation are relatively limited, given that it is initially scheduled to last 60 days at a time when Embassies are not even conducting regular business. We will keep you informed of all important developments.
* * *
If you have any questions or would like additional information, please contact John Assadi at