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UPDATE March 6, 2017: President Trump’s Latest Immigration Executive Order

On January 27, 2017, President Donald Trump signed an Executive Order (EO) titled, “Protecting the Nation from Terrorist Attacks by Foreign Nationals.” While this EO was immediately implemented (see here), it was ultimately suspended by federal court rulings.

In response to the suspension of this EO, the White House issued a new EO titled, “Protecting the Nation From Foreign Terrorist Entry To The United States” which will be implemented on March 16, 2017. The new EO revokes and entirely replaces the earlier EO. The stated purpose of the new EO is to “improve the screening and vetting protocols and procedures associated with the visa issuance process and the USRAP” (United States Refugee Admissions Program).

Key points from the March 6, 2017 EO are as follows:

1) For the next 90 days, foreign nationals of Sudan, Syria, Iran, Libya, Somalia, and Yemen who meet the following criteria are NOT eligible to travel to the United States:

a. Citizens or nationals of Sudan, Syria, Iran, Libya Somalia or Yemen,
b. Who are outside the United States on March 16, 2017,
c. Who do not hold a valid U.S. visa on March 16, 2017, and
d. Who did not have a valid visa at 5:00 P.M. Eastern Standard Time on January 27, 2017.

NOTE: Foreign nationals from Iraq were included in the January EO but have been removed due to negotiations and increased cooperation by the government of Iraq.

 2)  The EO does not apply to the following individuals:

a. Lawful permanent residents (“green card” holders);    
b. Dual nationals when traveling on a passport issued by a non-designated country;
c. Foreign nationals admitted to the United States after the effective date of the order;
d. Foreign nationals with a document other than a visa that is valid on March 16, 2017 or any date thereafter which permits travel to the United States such as an advance parole document;
e. Foreign nationals traveling on diplomatic, NATO, C-2, G-1, G-2, G-3 or G-4 category visas; or
f. Individuals granted asylum or refugee status before March 16, 2017.

 3)  The U.S. Refugee Admissions Program will be temporarily suspended for 120 days and upon resumption will not exceed admission of 50,000 refugees for fiscal year 2017. The EO does not apply to those refugees who have already been formally scheduled for transit by the U.S. state department.

4)  All foreign nationals must be interviewed before being issued a U.S. visa, on a going-forward basis. The U.S. Department of State is restricted from waiving visa interviews in specific situations, including visa extensions, national interest, or emergency circumstances.

5) Requires a review of international visa reciprocity to determine whether the purpose, length, and cost of U.S. visas are reciprocal to visas issued by foreign countries to U.S. citizens going abroad. If visas are not reciprocal, the U.S. Department of State must adjust the terms of U.S. visas issued to foreign nationals accordingly.

6) No immigrant or nonimmigrant visa issued before the effective date of this order shall be revoked pursuant to the EO. Any individual whose visa was marked revoked or marked canceled as a result of January EO shall be entitled to a travel document confirming that the individual is permitted to travel to the United States and seek entry.

7) Department of Homeland Security and the Department of State have the discretionary authority, on a case-by-case basis, to issue visas or allow the entry of nationals of these six countries into the U.S. when a national from one of the countries demonstrates that the denial of entry would cause undue hardship, that his or her entry would not pose a threat to national security, and that his or her entry would be in the national interest.

The Department of Homeland Security has released a Q&A regarding the new EO.

© 2019 Dinsmore & Shohl LLP. All rights reserved.


About this Author

Susan Allison, Dinsmore Law Firm, Immigration Attorney

Susan's immigration practice involves securing temporary work visas and permanent resident status for foreign nationals employed by domestic and international businesses. Her experience is focused on a wide variety of both nonimmigrant and immigrant petitions and applications including but not limited to H-1B, L-1B, TN, O-1 and E-1/E-2 as well as PERM labor certification, Multinational Managers/Executive and Extraordinary Ability/Outstanding Researcher. The challenges presented by the complexity of immigration law and the ever-changing landscape painted by the U.S....

Gregory Adams Dinsmore Law Immigration Attorney Higher Ed Lawyer

For more than 30 years, Greg Adams has counseled large and small domestic and international businesses, educational institutions, non-profit entities, investors, professional athletes, professors and researchers in all aspects of business-immigration and related laws. He has represented bi-coastal and other high tech clients in immigration matters, has helped companies to develop balanced immigration policies, and has architected legal and practical measures to handle large volumes of cases. Over the past two decades, Greg has developed novel approaches to challenging immigration dynamics and has overcome unfavorable governmental decisions for clients through a mix of persuasion and argument. A strong believer in problem-avoidance, Greg takes a proactive approach to case preparation and presentation. He has served as a bar association representative to the U.S. immigration agency, has taught immigration law at the University Dayton School of Law, and is a frequent speaker and author on immigration law topics. Since 1991 he has served as a senior editor of the annual Immigration and Nationality Law Handbook series.


Immigration Cases

Mr. Adams has handled thousands of immigration cases during the course of his more than two decades of practice as an immigration lawyer. Mr. Adams' experience includes the following: 

• Advising companies on I-9 (Employment Eligibility Verification) compliance matters, and providing I-9 training; 

• Handling a large volume of all types of L (intracompany transferee) work visa cases on behalf of executives, managers, and specialists with multi-national organizations, including for companies with new U.S. offices and multi-national companies that qualify for L blanket status; 

• Handling a large volume of H-1B (specialty occupation professional) work visa petitions of all types including those involving complex degree equivalency issues and for start-up companies, as well as for Singaporean and Chilean nationals under the special treaty that applies to them; 

• Handling a large volume of TN (Trade NAFTA) work visa applications for a wide array of occupations on the NAFTA list of occupations; 

• Handling a large volume of E-1 and E-2 (treaty trader/investor) visa applications for foreign companies that make an investment in a U.S. company; 

• Handling a large volume of O-1 (extraordinary ability) work visa cases for entertainers, athletes, artists, engineers, scientists, business professionals and others; 

• Handling a wide array of B-1 (business visitor) visa applications including for persons with special challenges such as past denials, security check issues, and unusual dynamics; 

• Handling a large number of J-1 (exchange visitor) visa applications and related J-1 waiver issues; 

• Counseling F-1 foreign students on work authorization and maintenance of status issues; 

• Securing K-1 and K-3 visas for fiancées and relatives of U.S. citizens; 

• Assisting foreign nationals in applying for and securing U.S. visas of all types at U.S. Embassies around the world.