NewsFlash! DOS Announces Limited Exceptions to Trump’s Order that Targets Nonimmigrant Workers

Today, the U.S. Department of State (DOS) announced a short list of exceptions to President Trump’s April 22 and June 22, 2020 executive orders that prevent admission of certain foreign nationals. Notably, the announcement excepts “… spouses and children of certain visa class holders, such as H, J, and L visa holders who are already excepted from, or not subject to [the June 22nd executive order].” In other words, if the principal spouse is in H1B, L-1, or J-1 status and is exempt from the executive order (e.g., H1B worker who was in U.S. as of the June 24, 2020 effective date of the executive order, while dependent family was stuck abroad) that person’s dependents will not be prevented admission based on the executive order.

The announcement also provides exceptions for applicants who are subject to aging out of their current immigrant visa classification before the relevant executive order expires or within two weeks thereafter. Further, it provides an exception for certain H and J visa applicants who are traveling to work in support of a critical U.S. foreign policy objective (such as COVID-19 response) and/or at the request of the U.S. government.


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