Trump Administration Adds Six Countries to Travel Ban

Ogletree, Deakins, Nash, Smoak & Stewart, P.C.
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Ogletree, Deakins, Nash, Smoak & Stewart, P.C.

On January 31, 2020, the Trump administration expanded the list of countries affected by Presidential Proclamation 9645, more commonly referred to as “Travel Ban 3.0.” Nigeria, Eritrea, Kyrgyzstan, Myanmar, Sudan, and Tanzania have all been added to the list after failing to meet minimum U.S. security standards. The new travel restrictions will take effect on February 21, 2020, and will include the following:

Country Immigrant Visas Nonimmigrant Visas
Eritrea issuance of immigrant visas suspended no impact
Kyrgyzstan issuance of immigrant visas suspended no impact
Myanmar issuance of immigrant visas suspended no impact
Nigeria issuance of immigrant visas suspended No impact
Sudan suspends participation in Diversity Lottery No impact
Tanzania suspends participation in Diversity Lottery No impact

Under the new travel restrictions, nationals from Eritrea, Kyrgyzstan, Myanmar and Nigeria will no longer be eligible for immigrant visas when applying at a consulate or embassy abroad thus preventing them from obtaining legal permanent residency (i.e., a green card). Individuals applying for a green card through the “adjustment of status” process from within the United States are not affected.

Nonimmigrant visas are those granted to foreign nationals temporarily seeking to enter the United States for a specific purpose (e.g., work permits or visitor/business visas). Foreign nationals from the designated countries may continue to travel on valid nonimmigrant visas (and apply for new ones), as those are not affected by the new restrictions. Previous travel restrictions remain unchanged for Libya, Yemen, North Korea, Syria, Iran, Somalia, and Venezuela. Exemptions and waivers for affected individuals may be available.

The Trump administration announced the original travel ban in January 2017. The ban was revised twice as the result of legal challenges. In October 2018, the Supreme Court of the United States upheld Travel Ban 3.0, ruling that the travel restrictions were within the scope of presidential authority under the immigration laws.

DISCLAIMER: Because of the generality of this update, the information provided herein may not be applicable in all situations and should not be acted upon without specific legal advice based on particular situations.

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