Q: I am on a nonimmigrant visa and I hold a passport of one of the affected countries, can I leave the U.S. and re-enter?
A: As of 2/01/2017, the following citizens of the following countries on nonimmigrant visas should not depart the United States or if outside of the United States, should not apply for a visa or re-entry to the U.S.: Iran, Iraq, Libya, Somalia, Sudan, Syria, and Yemen if at all possible.
Q: How long is the ban?
A: 90 days from the date of the order (until April 27, 2017). However, it can be extended.
Q: What if I am a citizen of one of the seven aforementioned countries but carry a passport of another country, am I included?
A: Possibly. The state Department has taken the position that even dual citizens are considered to be “from” the listed countries. However, DHS has taken the position that if the individual presents the passport of the non-listed country, then the individual will be able to be admitted to the US although subject to extended questioning.
Q: What if I am a lawful permanent resident of the U.S (green card holder) and am a citizen of one of the listed countries, can I travel internationally and return to the U.S.?
A: As of January 31, 2017, US permanent residents who are citizens of the listed countries have been officially taken off the EO and do not require waivers to be admitted to the U.S. from Customs and Border Patrol (CBP). Lawful permanent residents holding a passport of one of the seven banned countries or dual nationals traveling with a non-listed country passport may still undergo extended questioning at the time of their admission to the US.
Q: Are there any nonimmigrants from these seven countries that can still enter the U.S.?
A: Yes, the EO excludes foreign nationals traveling on certain diplomatic visas.
Q: I heard that DHS is asking some green card holders to sign forms (I-407) abandoning their green cards status. Is that true?
A: We have heard stories of this happening. DO NOT sign any form abandoning your lawful permanent resident status. Speak with an attorney.
Q: I heard the EO suspends the visa interview waiver program at US embassies abroad regardless of your nationality. Is that true?
A: Yes. However, some US embassies are still allowing individuals to use this “Dropbox” procedure. Check with the US embassy in advance of your travels.
Q: Is the Interview Waiver Program (Dropbox), the same thing as the Visa Waiver Program- ESTA?
A: No. The EOs have not mentioned the Visa Waiver Program (VWP). Individuals meeting VWP criteria can still utilize the program.
DRAFT EO – PROTECTING AMERICAN WORKERS
Q: I heard that there is an EO that affects H-1Bs and other employment-based nonimmigrant visas? Is that true?
A: There is only a draft EO that was leaked to the media. It was not signed. However, if it was signed as it is currently written it would:
Instruct DHS and DOL to review nearly all work visa categories including: H-1Bs, L-1s, F-1 OPT programs, H-2A, and the J-1 Summer Work Travel Program.
Increase worksite visits by DHS at places of employment of L-1 workers and within 2 years, all worksites of nonimmigrant workers.
Instruct DHS to define and clarify permissible activities for Business Visitors.
Please contact Barst Mukamal & Kleiner LLP at
(212) 686-3838 if you have questions or concerns.