Atlanta, GA- After months of legal challenges, which went all the way to the U.S. Supreme Court, the Trump Administration’s travel ban which targets immigrants from six Muslim majority countries and is in effect. The ban became effective at 8:00 p.m. Thursday, June 29, 2017, and immigrants need to be aware of what it means for them.
Criteria for the Travel Ban
The Trump Administration’s Executive bars immigrants from entering the U.S. for 90 day and bars refugees for 120 days if they are from the following countries: Iran, Libya, Somalia, Sudan, Syria, and Yemen.
Immigrants from the countries listed above will not be allowed entry to the U.S. during the 90-day period unless they have a “credible claim of bona fide relationship” with a school or job or are related to a U.S. green card holder, legal permanent resident or citizen.
When the Executive Order was introduced, the Trump Administration asserted it was intended to keep the country safe and give the State Department time to review vetting procedures for immigrants coming from Muslim countries.
The order face immediate legal challenges and created confusion at airports across the U.S. One issue with the ban was that green card holders were caught up in the ban when Civil rights groups including the ACLU objected to the order because they
Lower courts stopped the EO from being enacted, but the U.S. Supreme Court upheld the ban, stating that the President has the authority to craft immigration policy. However, justices clarified that green card holders and visa holder could enter the U.S. and other immigrants who have a “bona fide” connection to the country.
At this time, the State Department has been unclear about what denotes a “bona fide” relationship. It would seem with the amount of time the Trump Administration has had to work on this policy, and considering the chaotic rollout of the original ban, there would be more information about a policy that impacts millions of legal immigrants, U.S. citizens, and refugees.
Who is Include in the Travel Ban?
Who is Allowed Entry?
Legal permanent residents (aka green card holders)
Current visa holders
Visa applicants present in the US as of June 26
Immigrants granted asylum
Refugees already admitted to the U.S.
The travel ban has been tied up in legal proceedings since February. If the travel ban had not been delayed due to legal challenges, the ban on immigrants would have already expired. There are no indications that the administration has started working on improvements to the immigrant vetting system which points to the possibility of the Trump Administration asking for an extension of the EO.
The lack thoroughness in crafting this policy is inexcusable and will lead to additional litigation seeking clarity for the “bona fide” standard. Immigration is a complex area of law and immigration policies should address changes with thoughtfulness to avoid confusion.
To Learn More About the Travel Ban, Speak with an Immigration Lawyer in Atlanta
With any new administration, there will be changes to immigration policy that could impact you or a loved one. If you have questions about the travel ban and live in Atlanta, contact one of the immigration attorneys at Kuck Immigration Partners.