On December 4, 2017, the United States Supreme Court allowed President Trump’s third travel ban to go into effect while legal challenges against it proceed in the lower courts.
While the Supreme Court allowed implementation of the ban while challenges against it continue, it did not rule on the legality of the ban itself. It simply stated that the ban could go back in place pending the decisions from the Fourth and Ninth Circuit Courts of Appeals. These rulings are expected soon.
Travel Ban 3.0 added to the six countries initially named, and removed one country (Sudan) from the list. The following countries are now included in the travel ban, with each country having its own set of country-specific restrictions: Iran, Yemen, Libya, Syria, Somalia, Venezuela, North Korea, and Chad. As noted, the restrictions are tailored to each of the eight countries given each of their “unique conditions and deficiencies.” For some countries, the entrance of only certain individuals is prohibited (Venezuela), while other countries face more far-reaching limitations (Syria, North Korea). In the issuance of this updated travel ban, President Trump stated that a benchmark of minimum requirements based on international norms is needed to validate traveler identity and prevent fraud. The new policy does not have a specific end date, and instead, the U.S. government has stated that countries will be kept on the list until the government is sure that it can conduct proper screening and vetting of that country’s foreign nationals.
Those exempt from the ban include green card holders, those with valid visas, those with Advance Parole, and dual citizens using the passport of a country not on the list. Waivers are available on a case-by-case basis, generally when it can be deemed that the ban presents undue hardship, the individual is not a threat, and/or the individual’s entrance to the U.S. is in the national interest.
The ban applies to those currently located outside of the United States, those who do not have a visa, and those who are specifically covered under the language of the ban. Foreign nationals with approved asylum status, those already admitted as refugees, and those traveling on a diplomatic visa are exempt. If you are in the United States and covered by the ban, no visas will be revoked, but traveling outside the United States would be a risk. Please contact our office if you have any questions.