Helpful Updates Regarding Proclamation 10052
Since Trump's Order Impacting Those Applying for H, L, J Visas (Proclamation 10052) was announced, some important exceptions and clarifications have been made:
- Derivatives who will accompany or follow to join principals who are not subject to P10052 may still apply for derivative visas (H-4, L-2, and J-2 visas). This means spouses and children who are abroad without a valid visa may still apply for H-4, L-2 or J-2 visas if the principal is currently in the U.S., or has a valid H-1B, L-1 or J-1 visa approved prior to June 24, 2020.
- Individuals who were in the U.S. in H, L or J status on June 24, 2020, may leave the U.S. and not be subject to P10052. That is, they may leave the U.S., apply for a visa renewal before December 31, 2020, and return to the U.S. The Department of State confirmed this in a July 20, 2020 tweet.
- Principals and derivatives in H, L or J categories may continue to use the “Automatic Revalidation” of visa rule to return to the U.S. from Canada or Mexico. Specifically, H, L or J nonimmigrants who were in the U.S. on the effective date of the proclamation (June 24, 2020) and subsequently travels to Canada or Mexico only, and returns within 30 days, may still be readmitted with a valid I-94 and an expired H, L or J visa. CBP HQ has not confirmed this, but some CBP chiefs (the Vancouver Pre-Clearance, the Detroit CBP Field Office and the Office of Field Operations’ Coronavirus Coordination Cell) have confirmed that the proclamation does not affect Automatic Revalidation.
- P10052 does not impact Canadians. Because Canadian citizens do not need a U.S. visa to enter the U.S. (visa exempt), they are not subject to P10052. CBP HQ has confirmed this and guidance has been provided to local CBP ports on this issue.
- P10052 does not impact H-1B1 visas, which are for Singaporeans and Chileans only. This fact has been confirmed by both the U.S. Consulate in Singapore and the U.S. Consulate in Santiago.
- Foreign nationals that hold a valid B1/B2 visa may still travel to the U.S. provided the CBP officer at the port of entry (POE) confirms they are admissible (i.e., intentions are consistent with the visitor category). As for whether B1/B2 visitors may subsequently apply to change status in the U.S., the proclamation does not bar that explicitly, but it does states that an alien who circumvents the application of this proclamation through fraud or willful misrepresentation of a material fact shall be a priority for removal. As such, the option of applying for change of status should be carefully considered with an attorney.
Disclaimer: although the information above is collected from highly credible sources, they are based on current interpretations of policies by DOS, CBP or other government entities, which may change without notice. Additionally, inconsistent application of rules and policies is rampant, particularly given how hastily this proclamation was introduced. Finally, due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, many U.S. Embassies and Consulates have limited bandwidth for visa applications, and other travel restrictions exist.