Trump Issues New Travel Ban


Today, President Trump signed a new Executive Order ("EO") that will replace his original travel ban order. The new order will take effect at 12:01 am EST on March 16, 2017, at which time the original January 27th order will be revoked.

This new order seeks to address the myriad issues encountered with the original order by providing several clarifications and exemptions. Specifically, the new travel ban states:

• Lawful permanent residents, commonly known as green card holders, are exempt from the travel ban.
• Anyone who held a valid visa as of 5:00 pm EST on January 27, 2017, and still has a valid visa, is exempt from the travel ban. The order also notes, "Any prior cancellation or revocation of a visa that was solely pursuant to Executive Order 13769 [the January 27th EO] shall not be the basis of inadmissibility for any future determination about entry or admissibility."
• Iraq is no longer a banned country. Iran, Libya, Somalia, Sudan, Syria, and Yemen will still face a ninety-day travel ban from the effective date of the order.
• Dual nationals of banned countries are not subject to the travel ban if they are traveling using a passport issued by a non-designated country.
• Foreign nationals with travel documents other than visas, such as Advance Parole, are exempt from the travel ban.

Consular and CBP officers, moreover, will have the discretion to grant waivers for the issuance of visas and admission into the United States on a case-by-case basis for business and humanitarian reasons. For example, foreign nationals who previously entered the United States for a long-term period of work or study may be eligible for waivers if they are outside the United States on the effective date and seek to reenter the United States to resume their work or study. Also, if the foreign national is a young child or in need of urgent medical care, then he or she may qualify for a waiver. For a full list of exceptions to the travel ban and possible waivers, please refer to the full text of the EO.

With respect to refugees, the new EO does not indefinitely suspend the Syrian refugee program. Rather, the new travel ban suspends the admission of all refugees under the United States Refugee Admissions Program ("USRAP") for 120 days and caps the number of refugee admissions at 50,000 for Fiscal Year 2017. Refugees who schedule their travel to the United States before the effective date of the EO, however, will not be subject to the travel ban.

Finally, the President's EO suspends the Visa Interview Waiver Program. Specifically, the order states that "all individuals seeking a nonimmigrant visa [must] undergo an in-person interview, subject to specific statutory exceptions."

Goel & Anderson will continue to monitor developments and provide updates. If you have any questions, please contact your Goel & Anderson attorney.