On Friday, February 3, 2017, a Federal District Court judge
issued a nationwide suspension of President Trump's Executive
Order, "Protecting the Nation from Foreign Terrorist Entry
into the United States." For more information on that
Executive Order, please see our February 1
Alert. On Saturday, February 4, 2017, the Trump
Administration asked the Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit to
overrule the judge, but it refused on February 5. Thus, the
U.S. is currently admitting approved refugees, as well as travelers
with valid U.S. visas from the seven impacted nations, Iran, Iraq,
Libya, Somalia, Sudan, Syria and Yemen.
Note, however, the appeals court continues to consider the Trump
Administration's request for an emergency stay that, if
granted, would allow the ban to be enforced while the
Administration continues to appeal the lower court's decision
to block the ban. The court process appears to be moving
quickly as the Court of Appeals requested briefs to be filed today,
Monday, February 6. If the Administration's request for a
stay is granted, the ban could be reinstated immediately.
Thus, even though the ban is currently suspended, any international
travel continues to be risky for nationals of Iran, Iraq, Libya,
Somalia, Sudan, Syria and Yemen who are not U.S. lawful permanent
residents or are not dual citizens holding a passport from a
non-banned country containing a valid U.S. visa. Prior to the
suspension of the ban, the Administration clarified a few aspects
about the scope of the ban:
The ban does not apply to U.S.
citizens regardless of national origin/citizenship.
The ban does not apply to any U.S.
lawful permanent residents regardless of national
The ban should not apply to dual
nationals holding passports from a banned country and a non-banned
country, provided that the individual presents a valid U.S. visa in
the passport from the non-banned country.
Employer's Bottom Line
Because the ban could resume with little notice, it is
impossible to know whether the ban will be in place or not when a
traveler attempts to board a plane, change flights, or seek
admission at the U.S. port of entry. Therefore, people
carrying passports from any of the banned countries and all
refugees should carefully consider any plans to depart the U.S. if
presently here. If they are outside the U.S., there may be a
very small window for them to return, but that could change at any
time. The Department of Homeland Security is currently
following standard policies and procedures as they existed prior to
the ban, but there are reports of confusion at foreign airports
regarding who may or may not board flights to the U.S.
Additionally, individuals whose visas were cancelled or revoked
while the ban was in effect may be required to apply for new or
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guide to the subject matter. Specialist advice should be sought
about your specific circumstances.
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