Since June 22, 2020, many categories of nonimmigrants have been prevented from seeking entry to the United States due to Presidential Proclamation 10052. Enacted by former President Trump, the proclamation drastically reduced visa issuance and entry for nonimmigrants around the world. The ban was set to end on December 31, 2020, but was subsequently extended through March 31, 2021, citing the false premise that these nonimmigrants threatened our country’s economic recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic.
As of today, April 1, 2021, the ban has officially expired, and the Department of State (DOS) has confirmed that the ban is no longer in effect. The DOS has issued guidance regarding the phased resumption of visa services, but ultimately concludes that consular services will operate on a “post-by-post” basis. Accordingly, visa applicants should not assume that the expiration of the visa ban will result in immediate resumption of routine nonimmigrant visa processing.
COVID-related travel restrictions and travel bans are still in effect and are changing daily. We are still advising all of our clients to pay careful attention to these changes and know the risks associated with international travel at this time.