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Answers to Your Questions About New US Travel Order


FILE - International travelers arrive at Logan Airport following a federal court's temporary stay of U.S. President Donald Trump's executive order travel ban in Boston, Massachusetts.

Q: Who is subject to the suspension of entry under the Executive Order (EO)?

Foreign nationals from Sudan, Syria, Iran, Libya, Somalia, and Yemen, who are outside the U.S. who do not have a valid visa on the effective date of this order are not eligible to enter the U.S. while the temporary suspension remains in effect.

Q: Will in-transit travelers within the scope of the EO be denied entry into the U.S.?

Those individuals who are traveling on valid visas and arrive at a U.S. port of entry will still be permitted to seek entry into the U.S..

Q: I am a foreign 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 U.S.. Can I travel to the U.S.?

Foreign nationals from Sudan, Syria, Iran, Libya, Somalia, and Yemen who have valid visas will not be affected. No visas will be revoked solely based on this EO.

Q: I am presently in the U.S. 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 U.S.?

Yes. Individuals within the U.S. with valid multiple entry visas on the effective date of the order are eligible for travel to and from the U.S., provided the visa remains valid and the traveler is otherwise admissible.

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 EO?

Visas will not be revoked solely as a result of the EO. 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 EO to request a waiver?

Waivers for overseas travelers without a valid U.S. visa will be adjudicated by the Department of State in conjunction with a visa application.

Q: How are returning refugees and asylees affected by the EO?

Returning refugees and asylees, i.e., individuals who have already been granted asylum or refugee status in the U.S., are explicitly excepted from this EO.

Q: Are first-time arrival refugees with valid /travel documents allowed to travel to the U.S.?

Yes, but only refugees, regardless of nationality, whose travel was already formally scheduled by the Department of State, are permitted to travel to the U.S. and seek admission.

Q: Will unaccompanied minors within the scope of the EO be denied boarding and or denied entry in to the U.S.?

Any individuals, including children, who seek entry to the U.S. must have a valid visa (or other approved travel document) before travel to the U.S. The Secretary of State may issue a waiver on a case-by-case basis when in the national interest of the U.S..

Q: When will the EO be implemented?

The EO is effective at 12:01 A.M., Eastern Standard Time, on March 16, 2017.

Q: When will U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) issue guidance to both the field and airlines regarding the EO?

CBP will issue guidance and contact stakeholders to ensure timely implementation consistent with the terms of the EO.

Q: What does granting a waiver to the EO mean? How are waivers applied to individual cases?

Per the EO, the Departments of Homeland Security and State can review individual cases and grant waivers on a case-by-case basis if a foreign national demonstrates that his or her entry in to the U.S. 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 EO 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 U.S.) be allowed to return to the U.S.?

Per the EO, the suspension of entry does not apply to lawful permanent residents of the U.S.

Q: Can a dual national who holds nationality with one of the six designated countries traveling with a passport from an unrestricted country travel to the U.S.?

The EO exempts from its scope any dual national of one of the six countries when the individual is traveling on a passport issued by a different non-designated country.

Q: Are international students, exchange visitors, and their dependents from the six countries (such as F, M, or J visa holders) included in the EO? What kind of guidance is being given to foreign students from these countries legally in the U.S.?

The EO does not apply to individuals who are within the U.S. on the effective date of the order or to those individuals who hold a valid visa. Individuals holding valid F, M, or J visas may continue to travel to the U.S.

Q: Can U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) continue refugee interviews?

The Departments of Homeland Security and State will conduct interviews as appropriate and consistent with the EO. However, the EO suspends decisions on applications for refugee status, unless the Secretary of Homeland Security and the Secretary of State jointly determine, on a case-by-case basis, that the entry of an individual as a refugee is in the national interest and would not pose a threat to the security or welfare of the U.S.

Q: Does the EO apply to those currently being adjudicated for naturalization or adjustment of status?

USCIS will continue to adjudicate Applications for Naturalization (Form N-400) and Applications to Register Permanent Residence or Adjust Status (Form I-485) and grant citizenship consistent with
existing practices.

Q: Why was Iraq treated differently in this EO?

The Iraqi government has expressly undertaken steps to provide additional information about its citizens for purposes of our immigration decisions. Accordingly, it is no longer necessary to include Iraq in the temporary suspension applicable to the other six countries, but visa applications and applications for admission to the U.S. by Iraqi nationals will be subjected to additional scrutiny to determine if they have
connections with ISIS or other terrorist organizations.

(This Q&A has been edited and abridged. The full Q&A can be found here)

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