The Trump Administration officially released a revised version of its travel ban last week and, as expected, it has made some concessions in response to widespread criticism and, far more likely, in order to withstand inevitable legal challenges.
In today's post, we'll take a closer look at what the future holds for immigration law as we currently know it.
How exactly is travel ban 2.0 different?
Under the new travel ban, scheduled to take effect Thursday, a 90-day ban will be imposed on the issuance of new visas for those hailing from six countries -- Iran, Libya, Somalia, Sudan, Syria and Yemen. In a change, Iraq was dropped from the list owing to its sustained cooperation in fighting terrorism.
What else does it call for?
In addition to revising the list of countries, the new travel ban does the following:
- Suspends the refugee program for 120 days
- Reduces the cap for the refugee program from 110,000 to 50,000
- Lifts the indefinite travel ban on Syria
How would those with lawful immigration status or valid immigration documents be affected?
The revised order expressly dictates that those from any of the six nations who are 1) legal permanent residents of the U.S., 2) enjoy dual citizenship status and use a foreign passport, or 3) have previously been granted refugee or asylee status are exempt.
Furthermore, it states that those currently in possession of a valid visa should be able to enter the U.S. without issues, but will have to reapply if it expires.
Does this mean that people from the six nations who don't fall into one of these countries will be unable to enter the U.S.?
Not necessarily. The order outlines specific groups of people who can apply for waivers on a case-by-case basis, including:
- Those previously admitted for "a continuous period of work, study or other long-term activity."
- Those with "significant business or professional obligations."
- Those seeking to visit or reside with family.
Will it survive legal challenges?
Immigrant advocacy and civil liberties groups, as well as state governments, have condemned the revised measure, saying its changes have little meaningful difference from a legal perspective, and appear poised to renew their legal challenges.
For its part, the Trump Administration has expressed its belief that the changes made coupled with the articulation of a specific national security basis means it will likely withstand constitutional scrutiny.
Stay tuned for developments ...
Please consider speaking with a skilled legal professional as soon as possible if you or a loved one has questions or concerns relating to these recent developments.