Which COVID-19 Immigration Restrictions Are Still in Effect? | Illinois Immigration Attorneys
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Which COVID-19 Immigration Restrictions Are Still in Effect?

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Illinois immigration lawyersThroughout the COVID-19 pandemic, those seeking entry to the United States as immigrants and nonimmigrants have faced an additional layer of challenges due to executive proclamations restricting travel in the interest of public health. President Biden has relaxed restrictions somewhat, and as vaccines become more widely available and the spread of the virus slows, more restrictions may be lifted. However, for the time being, certain restrictions continue to remain in effect.

Suspended Entry for Nonimmigrant Visas

Since June 24, 2020, Executive Proclamation 10052 has prevented entry to the U.S. by any non-citizen using certain types of non-immigrant visas. This includes:

  • H-1B visas for temporary employees with specialized occupational knowledge or skills
  • H-2B visas for seasonal or intermittent laborers
  • J visas for interns, teachers, au pairs, and certain others seeking participation in a cultural exchange program
  • L visas for employees of international companies seeking to work temporarily at a U.S. branch
  • Visas for spouses or children of any of the above nonimmigrants

Most recently, this suspension has been extended through March 31, 2021, meaning that it could expire in the very near future if no further executive action is taken to extend it.

Restrictions on Entry From Specific Countries

In addition to these broad restrictions on nonimmigrants, a series of proclamations from both the Trump and Biden administrations have restricted the entry of nonimmigrants and immigrants alike if they have been physically present within 14 days in certain countries deemed to be health risks due to their experience with COVID-19. Currently, the countries included under the travel restriction are China, Iran, South Africa, Brazil, the United Kingdom, Ireland, and the 26 countries of the Schengen Area, which covers most of Europe.

While there are exceptions to these restrictions, including for lawful permanent residents and certain family members of lawful permanent residents and U.S. citizens, the proclamations continue to remain in effect broadly, with no definitive end date. The Biden administration has stated that it intends to review the travel restrictions monthly to determine if they should be extended or lifted. As long as the restrictions remain in effect, even those with valid visas may continue to encounter obstacles to entering the United States.

Contact an Illinois Immigration Attorney

At Mevorah & Giglio Law Offices, we understand how frustrating it may be to find your immigration, employment, or travel plans disrupted by a health situation that is out of your control. If you have questions about entry requirements in the midst of ever-changing policies and restrictions, contact our Illinois immigration lawyers today at 630-932-9100 for a free consultation.

 

Sources:

https://www.nafsa.org/regulatory-information/covid-19-restrictions-us-visas-and-entry

https://travel.state.gov/content/travel/en/News/visas-news/extension-of-presidential-proclamation-10052.html

https://www.whitehouse.gov/briefing-room/presidential-actions/2021/01/25/proclamation-on-the-suspension-of-entry-as-immigrants-and-non-immigrants-of-certain-additional-persons-who-pose-a-risk-of-transmitting-coronavirus-disease/

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