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February 2, 2017 Travel Advisory and Immigration Update

The last two weeks in Washington have been very eventful in the immigration field.  In light of the travel restrictions recently imposed by the President’s executive order, we are now advising our U.S. clients who have foreign national employees in the U.S. and who hold nationality from a country that has been the subject of significant security concerns to consider remaining in the U.S. until the State Department and DHS announce new procedures for applying for travel visas using additional background checks.  In some cases, foreign nationals may have to file an extension of status with USCIS in the U.S. to allow them to remain longer. In other cases, it may be impractical for individuals to stay, but they should know that they risk being unable to return for at least several months if they depart.  Affected clients should consult with counsel first.

There is also concern that additional countries could be added to the existing list of 7 countries (Iran, Iraq, Syria, Sudan, Somalia, Libya, and Yemen) whose nationals are temporarily barred from entry into the U.S. (and whose nationals already in the U.S. are strongly advised to remain here).  At the same time, the executive order is facing multiple challenges in federal courts around the country, leading to orders that are altering the terms of the executive order.

In addition, and of particular interest to some clients, there are reports that a separate executive order is being prepared that could alter certain visa programs, including the H-1B “high skilled worker” visa program, in terms of both numbers and qualifications. 

Copyright © 2017, Sheppard Mullin Richter & Hampton LLP.

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About this Author

Jonathan E. Meyer, Sheppard Mullin, International Trade Lawyer, Encryption Technology Attorney
Partner

Jon Meyer is a partner in the Government Contracts, Investigations & International Trade Practice Group in the firm's Washington, D.C. office.

Mr. Meyer was most recently Deputy General Counsel at the United States Department of Homeland Security, where he advised the Secretary, Deputy Secretary, General Counsel, Chief of Staff and other senior leaders on law and policy issues, such as cyber security, airline security, high technology, drones, immigration reform, encryption, and intelligence law. He also oversaw all litigation at DHS,...

202-747-1920
Greg L. Berk, Immigration Attorney, Sheppard Mullin Law Firm
Special Counsel

Greg Berk is a special counsel in the Labor and Employment Practice Group in the firm's Orange County office, where he focuses on immigration matters firmwide.

Areas of Practice

Mr. Berk has many years of experience advising on U.S. immigration matters.  He assists employers worldwide with the hiring and retention of talented foreign nationals that are needed in their U.S. workforce.  Frequently, a company must place a critical existing or new foreign national employee on the U.S. payroll within a few weeks.  Mr. Berk and his team understand these time pressures and jump to meet client expectations and simplify the immigration process.

Mr. Berk works closely with employers throughout the U.S. and overseas on immigration matters, including work visas, permanent residency and I-9 compliance.  He is a frequent author and speaker on immigration matters and developments.

714-424-2877