Published on March 1, 2021
On February 24, 2021, President Biden revoked Presidential Proclamation 10014, which suspended the entry of certain immigrants to the U.S. As a result, effective immediately, U.S. Consulates abroad may once again issue employment-based, family-based, and Diversity Lottery immigrant visas. Although the Biden Administration suspended the ban on entry for immigrants into the U.S., most of the U.S. Embassies and Consulates abroad continue to only accept emergency immigrant visa appointments due to COVID-19 restrictions.
As background, the Trump Administration issued Presidential Proclamation 10014 in April 2020 to suspend and limit the entry of certain immigrants outside the U.S., including those who had not been issued a valid immigrant visa or who did not possess a valid travel document as of the effective date of the order. Additionally, the proclamation restricted entry of individuals with a valid immigrant visa who were parents, siblings, and children over 21 of U.S. citizens, spouses and children of legal permanent residents, as well as individuals seeking to enter pursuant to employment-based immigrant visas (with the exception of those qualifying under the EB-5 program).
In revoking Presidential Proclamation 10014, President Biden has lifted the previous administration’s ban on immigrant visas, stating that it harms U.S. interests by keeping family members from joining their relatives, preventing American industries from utilizing global talent, and denying individuals selected by the Diversity Visa Lottery an opportunity to come to the U.S.
Presidential Proclamation 10052 remains in effect through March 31, 2021 and restricts foreign nationals in certain nonimmigrant visa categories from entering the U.S. Under the suspension, foreign nationals are still prevented from applying for H-1B, H-2B, L-1A, L-1B, and certain J-1 visas, if they were outside the U.S. on June 24, 2020 and did not hold a valid H-1B, H-2B, L-1A, L-1B, or J-1 visa at that time, unless the Department of State deems an individual’s entry to be in the U.S. national interest. Further, the U.S. continues to ban the entry of immigrants and nonimmigrants from the Schengen Area, the United Kingdom, Ireland, Brazil, and South Africa, due to the pandemic. In addition, travelers to the U.S. need to present a negative COVID test within 3 days of traveling to the U.S.
If you have any questions, please contact the Immigration Team at Ryan Swanson & Cleveland.
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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.