03 Jul DHS answers to questions on Executive Order on Travel Ban to the United States
The DHS provided the following answers to questions about the implementation of the Executive Order on Travel Ban to the United States on June 29, 2017.
Q. Who is subject to the suspension of entry under the Executive Order?
Per the Executive Order and the June 14 Presidential Memorandum, the temporary suspension of entry applies, with limited exceptions, only to foreign nationals from Sudan, Syria, Iran, Libya, Somalia, and Yemen, who are outside the United States as of June 26, 2017, who did not have a valid visa at 5 p.m. EST on January 27, 2017, and who do not have a valid visa as on 8:00 p.m. EDT on June 29, 2017. Further, the Executive Order does not bar entry for individuals who are excluded from the suspension provision under the terms of the Executive Order, who obtain a waiver from the Department of State or U.S. Customs and Border Protection, or who demonstrate to the Department of State that they have a bona fide relationship with a person or entity in the United States pursuant to the Supreme Court’s Order of June 26, 2017.
Q. How will this impact commercial air carriers?
DHS anticipates no operational impact to commercial carriers. Passengers are still required to present a valid visa or other entry document to travel to the Unites States. Passengers who present a valid visa or other entry document are presumed to be either outside the scope of the Executive Order, to have received a waiver from the travel restrictions, or to be covered by court injunctions. Passengers in possession of a valid visa or other entry document, irrespective of the date of issuance, should be boarded pursuant to the same operational procedures which were in place prior to the Supreme Court decision.
Q. What about dual citizens?
Travelers will be processed according to the travel document they present. For example, if the traveler presents a Canadian passport, the Canadian passport will be used to process that traveler for entry.
Q. I am a national from one of the six affected countries currently overseas and in possession of a valid visa, but I have no prior travel to the United States. Can I travel to the United States?
Foreign nationals from Sudan, Syria, Iran, Libya, Somalia, and Yemen who have valid visas will not be affected by this Executive Order. No visas will be revoked based on the Executive Order. But visas may be revoked, or admission may be denied, based on legal requirements independent of the Executive Order.
Q. I am presently in the United States in possession of a valid multiple entry visa but am a national of one of the six affected countries; can I travel abroad and return to the United States?
Yes. Individuals within the United States with valid multiple entry visas on June 26, 2017 are eligible for travel to and from the United States, provided the visa remains valid and the traveler is otherwise admissible. All foreign nationals traveling with a visa must satisfy all admissibility requirements for entry. Additional information on applying for admission to the United States is available at CBP.gov.
Q. Will the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) and the Department of State (DOS) be revoking the visas of persons ineligible to travel under the revised Executive Order?
No. Visas will not be revoked based on the Executive Order. Visas may be revoked based on legal requirements independent of the Executive Order. The Department of State has broad authority under Section 221(i) of the Immigration and Nationality Act to revoke visas.
Q. What is the process for overseas travelers affected by the Executive Order to request a waiver?
Waivers for overseas travelers who are affected by the EO will, if appropriate, be adjudicated by the Department of State. Please contact the Department of State for additional information.
Q. Will unaccompanied minors within the scope of the Executive Order be denied boarding and or denied entry into the United States?
The Executive Order applies to those who do not have valid visas and are not otherwise exempt. Any individuals, including children, who seek entry to the United States must have a valid visa (or other approved travel document) before travel to the United States. The Department of State will determine whether the Executive Order is enjoined with respect to a particular individual and, if appropriate, may issue a waiver on a case-by-case basis when in the national interest of the United States notwithstanding the suspension of entry under the Executive Order.=
Q. Is DHS complying with all court orders?
DHS is complying, and will continue to comply, with all court orders in effect.
Q. When will CBP issue guidance to both the field and airlines regarding the Executive Order?
CBP will issue guidance and contact stakeholders to ensure timely implementation consistent with the terms of the Executive Order.
Q. If I receive a valid immigrant visa from the Department of State and I am a first-time arrival, will I be allowed to travel to the U.S.?
Yes. Individuals holding valid immigrant visas do not fall within the scope of the Executive Order. You will, however, be subject to all laws and regulations governing entry into the U.S.
Q. Does this affect travelers at all ports of entry?
Yes, this Executive Order applies to travelers who are applying for entry into the United States at any port of entry—air, land, or sea. Additionally, the Executive Order will be applied to processing travelers at preclearance locations.
Q. What does granting a waiver to the Executive Order mean? How are waivers applied to individual cases?
Per the Executive Order, the Commissioner of U.S. Customs and Border Protection, as delegated, and the Department of State can review individual cases and grant waivers on a case-by-case basis if a foreign national demonstrates that his or her entry into the United States is in the national interest, will not pose a threat to national security, and that denying entry during the suspension period will cause undue hardship.
Q. Does “from one of the six countries” mean citizen, national, or born in?
The Executive Order applies to both nationals and citizens of the six countries.
Q. Will nationals of the six countries with valid green cards (lawful permanent residents of the United States) be allowed to return to the United States?
Per the Executive Order, the suspension of entry does not apply to lawful permanent residents of the United States.
Q. Has CBP issued clear guidance to CBP officers at ports of entry regarding the Executive Order?
CBP has issued and will continue to issue any needed guidance to the field with respect to this Executive Order.
Q. What additional screening will nationals of restricted countries (as well as any visa applications) undergo as a result of the Executive Order?
In making admission and visa eligibility determinations, DHS and DOS will continue to apply all appropriate security vetting procedures.
For more information you may contact the DHS website.
Crispin Caday Lozano, Esq. is an active member of the State Bar of California, the American Immigration Lawyers Association and San Francisco Trial Lawyers Association. He specializes in immigration law and personal injury. For free consultation email or call (firstname.lastname@example.org/ 1-877-456-9266)