What You Need To Know About Biden’s Travel Ban Revocation

Rivkin Radler LLP

Rivkin Radler LLP

Yesterday, the Biden administration revoked parts of the Trump-era executive orders that had prevented certain foreign nationals from entering the United States due to the coronavirus outbreak.

Here’s what you need to know:

What’s Changed

  • U.S. consulates can issue an immigrant visa (i.e. a “green card”) to foreign nationals seeking to enter the United States for the first time through sponsorship from an employer or U.S. citizen sibling.
  • U.S. consulates can issue an immigrant visa to foreign nationals seeking to enter the United States on a Diversity Lottery Visa.

What’s Stayed the Same

  • The U.S. consulates still are not permitted to issue H-1B, L-1, H-4 or J-1 visas, which allow temporary entry, unless an exception applies. This particular ban is set to expire on March 31, 2021.
  • The U.S. consulates can still issue immigrant visas to spouses and children of U.S. citizens and the other categories exempted by the prior executive orders.
  • Lawful Permanent Residents can continue to enter the U.S. with a valid permanent resident card

The Takeaway

This proclamation clears the way for foreign nationals seeking to enter the U.S permanently for the first time, but it continues the ban on temporary visas (H-1B, L-1, H-4 or J-1).  However, this proclamation states that the bans “do not advance the interests of the United States,” suggesting that further action with regard to the ban on temporary visas may be forthcoming.

If you are a foreign national with a temporary visa, you should consult with an immigration attorney before traveling outside the United States.

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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