Additional Limited Exceptions Available to Recent Presidential Proclamations Suspending the Entry of Certain Foreign Nationals into the United States

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By: Jacqueline Valle and Jagan Tamirisa

The US Department of State (DOS) has issued further exceptions to the presidential proclamations of June 22, 2020 and April 22, 2020, which limited the entry of certain foreign nationals into the United States. Limited categories of foreign nationals will be excluded from the proclamations, including:

  • Children who will age out of their current immigrant visa classification by January 14, 2021 (within two weeks of the immigrant visa proclamation’s expiration date)
  • Certain H and J visa applicants who will work to support a US foreign policy objective, such as responding to the COVID-19 pandemic, and/or who are traveling based on the request of the US government
  • Spouses and children of visa holders that are not subject to the presidential proclamation: If the principal visa holder had a valid US visa and was present in the US on the proclamation’s effective date (June 24, 2020), their dependents are also exempt from the proclamation. This includes spouses and children of H, L, and J visa holders. Additionally, if the principal visa holder receives a discretionary exemption from the proclamation, their dependents will receive the exemption as well.

DOS will continue to issue H, L, and J visas to dependents that are not subject to the proclamation or the principal applicant is currently in the US.

The most recent presidential proclamation limited prospective H, L, and J visa holders from entering the United States through December 31, 2020 if they did not already hold a valid US visa or travel document and they were outside of the US on the proclamation’s effective date of June 24, 2020. Applicants for immigrant visas who did not yet have an immigrant visa by April 23, 2020 are also subject to these restrictions. Certain categories of foreign nationals are excluded from the proclamations, including green card holders, spouses and children of US citizens, those whose entry is in the national interest of the US, and more.

Conclusion

To learn more about the recent presidential proclamations, whether exceptions apply to you or an employee, and any other immigration concerns, please contact your trusted Chugh, LLP attorney.

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