The Supreme Court of the United States has allowed provisions of the Presidential Proclamation issued on September 24, 2017 to be fully enforced. This is not a final ruling on the travel ban, as challenges to the policy continue to work their way through federal courts and the Supreme Court will ultimately rule on its legality soon. As background, below are the specifics of each travel ban / proclamation that has been issued. We will continue to monitor events and keep this page up-to-date as details become available.
The President of the United States first signed executive order 13769 on January 27, 2017 that affected travelers from seven countries. That order was temporarily suspended by a federal court and is no longer an issue.
On March 6, 2017, the President signed a new executive order that affects travelers from six countries. It too was temporarily suspended by a federal court.
However, on June 26, 2017, the U.S. Supreme Court partially granted the government's request to stay the preliminary injunctions. The decision, however, contained an important exception that upheld the injunction for individuals "who have a credible claim of a bona fide relationship with a person or entity in the United States." As a result, most students and scholars were exempt from the 90-day bar.The period covering this ban expired on October 18, 2017.
On September 24, 2017, a Presidential Proclamation - “Enhancing Vetting Capabilities and Processes for Detecting Attempted Entry Into the United States by Terrorists or Other Public-Safety Threats” - was issued. This new proclamation affects nationals from Chad, Iran, Libya, North Korea, Venezuela, Somalia, Syria, and Yemen. Sudan was removed and Chad, North Korea, and Venezuela were added. The new Proclamation represents a complete ban for all nationals, immigrant and nonimmigrant, from North Korea and Syria. Nationals from the other six countries will face varying degrees of additional security checks when applying for certain visas.
The government has determined that nationals of these countries will have restrictions and/or heightend security processes to complete before travel is possible. How each country is affected is detailed below:
- North Korea and Syria: Entry as immigrants and nonimmigrants is suspended. Student (F-1), exchange (J-1) and employment (H-1B) visa holders are ineligible to travel if they are outside the U.S., do not have a valid visa, or do not qualify for a visa or travel document on the applicable effective date of the Proclamation.
- Chad, Libya and Yemen: Entry as immigrants and nonimmigrants on B-1/B-2 tourist visas is suspended. The ban has no effect on student (F-1), exchange (J-1) or employment (H-1B) visa holders.
- Somalia: Entry as immigrants is suspended. All nonimmigrants, including those applying student (F-1), exchange (J-1) or employment (H-1B) visas, face enhanced screening and vetting requirements.
- Iran: Entry as immigrants and on most nonimmigrant visas is suspended if they are outside the U.S., do not have a valid visa, or do not qualify for a visa or travel document on the applicable effective date of the Proclamation. However, student (F-1) and J-1 exchange visitor visas are still eligible to travel. Students and exchange visitors will have enhanced screening and vetting requirements.
- Venezuela: Entry of Venezuelan government officials and their immediate family members as nonimmigrants on B-1/B-2 visas is suspended. Student (F-1), exchange (J-1) or employment (H-1B) visas, face enhanced screening and vetting requirements.
- Sudan: No longer have travel restrictions.
- Iraq: Iraq is not listed as one of the affected countries, but the Proclamation states that DHS recommended "that nationals of Iraq who seek to enter the United States be subject to additional scrutiny to determine if they pose risks to the national security or public safety of the United States." Iraqi nationals should expect advanced screening and vetting.
These restrictions do not apply to anyone inside the U.S. as of the applicable effective date or those with a currently valid green card, visa or travel document. However, unlike the earlier ban, which temporarily limited travel for 90 days, the new restrictions are indefinite and condition-based, not time-based.
If you have any questions, you can contact the international office for assistance.
Travel Ban - Timeline & Further Information Expand
Travel Ban Timeline and Further Information:
- January 27, 2017:
Original executive order 13769 was issued. It affected nationals from Iran, Iraq, Libya, Somalia, Sudan, Syria, and Yemen. The order was temporarily suspended by a federal judge.
- March 6, 2017:
A new Executive Order was signed, affecting nationals from Iran, Libya, Somalia, Sudan, Syria, and Yemen (Iraq was dropped from the list). Again, a federal judge temporarily suspended the order. See a list below explaining who is not covered under the ban.
- June 26, 2017:
The U.S. Supreme Court partially granted the government’s request to stay the preliminary injunctions and allow parts of the ban for individuals from Iran, Syria, Yemen, Libya, Somalia and Sudan to be implemented. However, the decision contains an important exception that upholds the injunction for individuals who have a “credible claim” of a bona fide relationship with a person or entity in the United States. As a result, most students and scholars remain exempt from the travel ban until a final decision is made by the Supreme Court. Students and scholars from these countries should continue to apply for visas as soon as possible. This ban is set to expire October 18, 2017.
- September 24, 2017:
A Presidential Proclamation was issued for nationals from Chad, Iran, Libya, North Korea, Somalia, Syria, Venezuela and Yemen. See below for more details on how this Proclamation affects nationals from each country.
- October 8, 2017:
The U.S. Department of State announced that it had suspended non-immigrant visa services at all U.S. diplomatic facilities in Turkey. The suspension only impacts Turkish nationals and applies to all non-immigrant visas, including F-1 student, J-1 exchange visitor, and H-1B specialty worker. Normal travel to the U.S. can continue for Turkish nationals with existing U.S. visas and for other nationalities traveling via Turkey. More details will be provided when known.
The March 6, 2017 ban does not apply to the following individuals:
- U.S. lawful permanent residents in possession of a valid Form I-551 (green card) or temporary I-551 stamp
- Holders of a currently valid immigrant or nonimmigrant visa that was either approved prior to 5:00 eastern standard time January 27, 2017, or valid as of March 6, 2017
- Dual citizens of one of the 6 countries and the United States (such individuals are always considered U.S. citizens)
- Dual citizens of one of the 6 countries and another country not on the list of 6, who will enter the United States on the basis of a valid passport issued by the country not on the list of 6
Individuals who are citizens of one of the 6 countries and do not fall within one of the above-listed exceptions would be subject to the new entry bar.
The September 24, 2017 Proclamation
A new Presidential Proclamation was issued for nationals from Chad, Iran, Libya, North Korea, Somalia, Syria, Venezuela and Yemen. Each country has different restrictions. However, unlike the earlier ban, which temporarily limited travel for 90 days, the new restrictions are indefinite and conditioned based, not time based. The restrictions take effect October 18, 2017 for Chad, North Korea and Venezuela. For the five remaining countries, which were part of the original executive order, the exceptions to the visa ban imposed by the Supreme Court for close relatives will remain until October 18, 2018.
The September 24, 2017 Proclamation applies to nationals of the identified countries who:
- Are outside the United States on the applicable effective date under section 7 of this proclamation;
- Do not have a valid visa on the applicable effective date under section 7 of this proclamation; and
- Do not qualify for a visa or other valid travel document under section 6(d) of this proclamation.
Exemptions to the September 24, 2017 Proclamation include:
- Any lawful permanent resident of the United States;
- Any foreign national who is admitted to or paroled into the United States on or after the applicable effective date under section 7 of this proclamation;
- Any foreign national who has a document other than a visa -- such as a transportation letter, an appropriate boarding foil, or an advance parole document -- valid on the applicable effective date under section 7 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;
- Any dual national of a country designated under section 2 of this proclamation when the individual is traveling on a passport issued by a non-designated country;
- Any foreign national traveling on a diplomatic or diplomatic-type visa, North Atlantic Treaty Organization visa, C-2 visa for travel to the United Nations, or G-1, G-2, G-3, or G-4 visa; or
- Any foreign national who has been granted asylum by the United States; any refugee who has already been admitted to the United States; or any individual who has been granted withholding of removal, advance parole, or protection under the Convention Against Torture.
Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) Program Expand
On September 5, 2017, President Trump announced that Deferred Action for Early Childhood Arrivals (DACA) was being rescinded and that that new applications for individuals seeking Deferred Action status would no longer be accepted.
On January 9, 2018, U.S. District Court judge William Alsup ordered a nation-wide temporary injunction on the Trump Administration’s decision to end the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program, stating the decision to end the program was based on a “flawed legal premise.” This decision orders the federal government to resume accepting renewal applications from anyone who had DACA status before Sept. 5, 2017. The USCIS was ordered to post “reasonable public notice” on the process to apply to renew DACA.
Students needing assistance with the DACA renewal application fee may want to visit the Mission Asset Fund. This organization is providing grants for the renewal application fees.
"Buy American & Hire American" Expand
"Buy American & Hire American":
On April 18, 2017, President Trump signed an executive order entitled, "Buy American and Hire American."
Buy American refers to a set of procurement laws about how goods and manufactured products are obtained and how they’re used in federal projects or federally funded projects.
Hire American generally refers to the body of law and policy concerning how our immigration, visa and guest worker programs are operated to ensure proper protections for American workers. The biggest concern for students and scholars is how this order will affect the H-1B Specialty Worker program.
Among other things, this executive order:
- Commits the executive branch to "rigorously enforce and administer the laws governing entry into the United States of workers from abroad"
- Calls on the Departments of Homeland Security, State, Labor, and Justice to "as soon as practicable, and consistent with applicable law, propose new rules and issue new guidance, to supersede or revise previous rules and guidance if appropriate, to protect the interests of United States workers in the administration of our immigration system, including through the prevention of fraud or abuse"
- Calls on the same agencies to "as soon as practicable, suggest reforms to help ensure that H-1B visas are awarded to the most-skilled or highest-paid petition beneficiaries"
This executive order does not change any laws related to H-1B special worker visas. It mostly calls on the appropriate government agencies to start working on proposals to revamp the classification.
Until then, those applying for computer technology based positions can expect greater scrutiny when applying for H-1B visas. Employers will need to demonstrate that a bachelor’s degree or higher in a specific field of study is necessary to do the job. Employers would be wise to include detailed job descriptions indicating the work to be done and the percentage of time that will spent each day on those duties. In addition, the employer will need to explain why the job duties being performed require a college degree, that the degree has been the standard requirement historically at the employer for similar positions that have been filled, and that the degree is a common requirement in the industry for similar positions.
More details will be reported as they become available.
Executive Orders & Statements