Published on 3/12/2020
On March 11, 2020, the White House has issued a proclamation effective at 11:59 p.m. eastern daylight time on March 13, 2020, that restricts foreign nationals from entering the U.S. if they were physically present within the Schengen Area at least 14 days prior to their attempted admission into the United States. For purposes of this proclamation, the Schengen Area is made up of 26 European states, including: Austria, Belgium, Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Iceland, Italy, Latvia, Liechtenstein, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malta, Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden, and Switzerland. This travel restriction will not apply to the following individuals:
(i) any lawful permanent resident of the United States;
(ii) any alien who is the spouse of a U.S. citizen or lawful permanent resident;
(iii) any alien who is the parent or legal guardian of a U.S. citizen or lawful permanent resident, provided that the U.S. citizen or lawful permanent resident is unmarried and under the age of 21;
(iv) any alien who is the sibling of a U.S. citizen or lawful permanent resident, provided that both are unmarried and under the age of 21;
(v) any alien who is the child, foster child, or ward of a U.S. citizen or lawful permanent resident, or who is a prospective adoptee seeking to enter the United States pursuant to the IR-4 or IH-4 visa classifications;
(vi) any alien traveling at the invitation of the United States Government for a purpose related to containment or mitigation of the virus;
(vii) any alien traveling as a nonimmigrant pursuant to a C-1, D, or C-1/D nonimmigrant visa as a crewmember or any alien otherwise traveling to the United States as air or sea crew;
(viii) any alien
(A) seeking entry into or transiting the United States pursuant to one of the following visas: A-1, A-2, C-2, C-3 (as a foreign government official or immediate family member of an official), E-1 (as an employee of TECRO or TECO or the employee’s immediate family members), G-1, G-2, G-3, G-4, NATO-1 through NATO-4, or NATO-6 (or seeking to enter as a nonimmigrant in one of those NATO categories); or
(B) whose travel falls within the scope of section 11 of the United Nations Headquarters Agreement;
(ix) any alien whose entry would not pose a significant risk of introducing, transmitting, or spreading the virus, as determined by the Secretary of Health and Human Services, through the CDC Director or his designee;
(x) any alien whose entry would further important United States law enforcement objectives, as determined by the Secretary of State, the Secretary of Homeland Security, or their respective designees, based on a recommendation of the Attorney General or his designee;
(xi) any alien whose entry would be in the national interest, as determined by the Secretary of State, the Secretary of Homeland Security, or their designees; or
(xii) members of the U.S. Armed Forces and spouses and children of members of the U.S. Armed Forces.
This Proclamation is the most recent restriction placed on foreign nationals due to the COVID-19 outbreak. On January 31, 2020, the Whitehouse suspended and limited the entry of foreign nationals who were physically present within the People’s Republic of China, excluding the Special Administrative Regions of Hong Kong and Macau, during the 14-day period preceding their entry or attempted entry into the United States. On February 29, 2020, the White House suspended and limited the entry of foreign nationals who were physically present within the Islamic Republic of Iran during the 14-day period preceding their entry or attempted entry into the United States. Please review our previous alerts regarding these travel restrictions here.
The immigration attorneys at Ryan, Swanson and Cleveland are closely monitoring the restrictions on travelers to the U.S. as a result of COVID-19. If you or your employee has an upcoming visa appointment in China, Iran, or the Schengen Area we recommend that you contact our immigration team.
Amy Royalty can be reached at [email protected].
Marsha Mavunkel can be reached at [email protected].
Jen Chen can be reached at [email protected].
Cody Nunn can be reached at [email protected].
Janet Cheetham can be reached at [email protected].
Joel Paget can be reached at [email protected].
This message has been released by the Immigration Group at Ryan, Swanson & Cleveland, PLLC to advise of recent developments in the law. Because each situation is different, this information is intended for general information purposes only and is not intended to provide legal advice on any specific facts and circumstances. Ryan, Swanson & Cleveland, PLLC is a full-service law firm located in Seattle, Washington.