Disclaimer: International Affairs is able to provide you with general guidance. However, any advice provided to you by our office, as well as the information on the IA webpages, information handouts and request forms, should not be construed as legal advice. Additionally, due to the fluid nature of governmental interpretation, the USCIS may change its interpretation of these immigration laws/regulations and eligibility requirements for benefits, at any time. We will do our best to provide you with the most current guidance. Each case is fact-specific and it is advised that you contact an experienced immigration attorney if you have questions regarding your situation.
On October 11, 2019 an injunction was issued for the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) public charge rule. As a result, DHS and USCIS are temporarily blocked from enforcing the final rule titled Inadmissibility on Public Charge Grounds, which was set to go into effect on October 15, 2019. The order states that "if this Order is later terminated and the Rule goes into effect, the Rule's stated effective date of October 15, 2019, as well as any references in the Rule to October 15, 2019... shall be replaced with a date after this Order is terminated."
International students must continue to show sufficient proof of financial support during the admission process and while traveling. J-1 students are required to maintain health insurance while in the United States and F-1 students are highly encouraged to obtain health insurance, regardless of the injunction for this rule.
On August 14, 2019, the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) published its final rule titled Inadmissibility on Public Charge Grounds, which would go into effect on October 15, 2019. The rule defines the term “public charge” and explains what DHS would review in making public charge determinations.
Specifically, the U.S. wants to ensure that international students are not going to need money or assistance from the government while in the United States. This means that USCIS could deny requests to change or extend status for foreign nationals who received one or more public benefits for a total of one year in a three year period. Further information can be found here.
On May 3, 2019, an injunction was issued for the Accrual of Unlawful Presence and F, J, and M Nonimmigrants. As a result of the nationwide injunction, USCIS is temporarily blocked from enforcing the new policy to F, J, and M non-immigrants. Until further notice, USCIS will apply the prior policy guidance related to unlawful presence, which states that unlawful presence will not accrue unless and until there is a specific finding of a status violation by USCIS.
International students should still maintain their status and avoid accruing unlawful presence at all costs. Please contact the International Affairs Office with any questions about maintenance of status or concerns regarding accruing unlawful presence.
On August 9 2018 USCIS implemented a new policy regarding unlawful presence. This new policy can have serious consequences for F-1, J-1 and M-1 status students who are in violation of status (including failure to continue to pursue the course of study) and/or have had status terminated or completed. The memo can be found here.
In essence, the day after the F, J, or M nonimmigrant no longer pursues their course of study or the authorized activity of their status, or the day after he or she engages in an unauthorized activity (not allowed by the relevant set of regulations), they will immediately begin accruing 'unlawful presence.' In the case of a student who has completed their studies and is eligible for a grace period, the accrual will begin after the appropriate grace period. This accrual calculation can be retroactive (but not before August 9, 2018).
Other triggering events include expiration of the I-94 validity dates, or an order from an immigration judge for exclusion/deportation/removal.
Unlawful presence in the U.S. can result in bars to readmission to the U.S.: 180+ days of unlawful presence results in a bar of 3 years, and more than one year of unlawful presence results in a bar of 10 years. A bar can become permanent if such a person re-enters the U.S. illegally.
June 26, 2018: U.S. Supreme Court Upholds Third Travel Ban
On June 26, 2018, the U.S. Supreme Court upheld all of the provisions of the latest travel ban issued on September 24, 2017. The court order applies to the entire United States. Previously on December 4, 2017, the U.S. Supreme Court issued a temporary order that allowed all of the provisions of the travel ban issued on September 24, 2017 to take effect immediately.
The provisions of the third travel ban are outlined below (see the Sept 27, 2017 posting).
International Affairs and the UCCS campus community supports all UCCS international students and scholars, from every country. Please know that our office will continue to advocate for international students and scholars pursuing their academic and professional goals here on our campus, and support for our students and scholars is available in our office as well as other offices on the UCCS campus. Please visit our office in Copper 9202 in person, or contact our office by email (firstname.lastname@example.org) or phone (719-255-5018) to speak with an advisor, with any questions or concerns regarding the travel ban restrictions or any other issue.
April, 2018: Chad removed from list of countries subject to Travel Ban
Presidential Proclamation 9723 removed Chad from the list of countries subject to Travel Ban 3.0 on April 10, 2018. Later in April, the U.S. Supreme Court heard oral arguments in the case. Challenges had been made to Travel Ban 3.0 through lawsuits filed in U.S. District Courts. A decision is expected from the Supreme Court by the end of June 2018. Until that time, Travel Ban 3.0 restrictions continue for the seven remaining countries of Iran, Libya, Syria, Yemen, Somalia, North Korea, and Venezuela.
December 5, 2017: U.S. Supreme Court Order Allows Third Travel Ban ('Travel Ban 3.0')
On December 4, 2017, the U.S. Supreme Court issued an order that allows all of the provisions of the latest travel ban issued on September 24, 2017 to take effect immediately. The court order applies to the entire United States. The cases in the lower courts are proceeding, which means the situation could change in the future when the lower courts review and issue decisions on the cases.
New travel restrictions
The update that International Affairs provided on September 27, 2017 (below) explains in detail the travel restrictions under the most recent presidential proclamation instituting new entry restrictions for foreign nationals (citizens) of the following countries: Chad, Iran, Libya, North Korea, Syria, Venezuela, Somalia, and Yemen. These restrictions take effect immediately.
Please read the update from Sept. 27 carefully, especially the Frequently Asked Questions section. Reach out to your International Affairs advisor if you have questions once you have reviewed the previous alert.
Please know that International Affairs and UCCS support our international students and scholars. If you need assistance with any questions or concerns, you are welcome to connect with your International Affairs1 advisors in person (in Copper House 9202), by phone (719-255-5018), or email (email@example.com). We will do our best to answer your questions, advise you accurately, and refer you to resources on and off campus when appropriate.
September 27, 2017: Presidential Proclamation Establishing New Travel Restrictions
Presidential Proclamation Establishing New Travel Restrictions
As you are most likely aware, on Sunday evening Sept. 24, President Trump issued a presidential proclamation instituting new entry restrictions for foreign nationals (citizens) of the following countries: Chad, Iran, Libya, North Korea, Syria, Venezuela, Somalia, and Yemen. Please see the Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) below for details about these new restrictions.
Frequently Asked Questions
Q. Do the new entry restrictions require an international student and scholar from one of the designated countries to leave the U.S.? A. No. The new restrictions do not require anyone from one of the designated countries to depart the U.S. The restrictions do not affect the immigration status for those who are already present in the United States. The U.S. government will not ask them to leave the country as long as they maintain their current immigration status.
Q. If a student or scholar is from one of the eight designated countries, does the new presidential proclamation and entry restrictions cancel (revoke) his/her valid visa stamp in the passport? A. No. The new proclamation does not cancel or in any manner affect the validity of a current U.S. visa.
Q. Do the new entry restrictions apply to someone who is a dual citizen of one of the eight named countries and another country? A. The new entry restrictions do not apply to an individual who is a dual citizen if s/he presents a passport from a non-designated country (i.e. not one of the eight named countries) when entering the U.S. The U.S. visa stamp must be in the passport from a non-designated country.
Q. How does the new presidential proclamation affect foreign nationals (citizens) from Chad, Iran, Libya, North Korea, Syria, Venezuela, Somalia, and Yemen who are (or will be) international students or scholars at the University of Colorado Colorado Springs and wish to enter the U.S.? A. As of October 18, 2017, foreign nationals of these eight countries, who are not "green card" holders (U.S. lawful permanent residents), will be subject to restrictions (in some cases suspension) affecting U.S. visa issuance and entry into the U.S. The prohibitions depend upon the country. Below is a list of the types of restrictions and the foreign nationals impacted by country:
Iran - Suspension of Entry into the U.S. as Immigrants and Nonimmigrants Except for on Student (F-1 or M-1) Visas or Exchange Visitor (J-1) Visas Entry into the U.S. of foreign nationals from Iran as either nonimmigrant temporary visas or immigrants is suspended except that individuals on valid student (F-1 or M-1) or exchange visitor (J-1) visas will be allowed entry but will be subject to enhanced screening and vetting requirements prior to being issued a visa.
North Korea & Syria - Total Suspension of Entry into the U.S. Entry into the U.S. of foreign nationals from North Korea and Syria as either nonimmigrants on temporary visas or immigrants is suspended. (Immigrants are individuals applying to enter the U.S. on an immigrant visa that allows them to become a lawful permanent resident/"green card" holder upon being admitted entry to the U.S.)
Chad, Libya, & Yemen - Suspension of Entry into the U.S. as Immigrants & Nonimmigrants on Business (B-1), Tourist (B-2), & Business/Tourist (B-1/B-2) Visas Entry into the U.S. of foreign nationals from Chad, Libya, & Yemen as either nonimmigrants on business (B-1), tourist (B-2), and business/tourist (B-1/B-2) visas or immigrants is suspended. Entry of nonimmigrants on other visa types does not change with the new entry restrictions.
Somalia - Suspension of Entry into the U.S. as Immigrants & Additional Scrutiny for Nonimmigrants Entry into the U.S. of foreign nationals from Somalia as immigrants is suspended. Additional scrutiny will be applied to all nonimmigrant visa and entry applications.
Venezuela - Suspension of Entry into the U.S. by Officials of Certain Government Agencies and Their Immediate Family Members as Nonimmigrants on Business (B-1), Tourist (B-2), & Business/Tourist (B-1/B-2) Visas & Additional Measures Entry into the U.S. of officials of certain Venezuelan government agencies and their immediate family members as nonimmigrants on business (B-1), tourist (B-2), and business/tourist (B-1/B-2) visas is suspended. Also, the proclamation states that "appropriate additional measures" will be applied to other visa holders but does not specify what these "additional measures" will be.
Q. Do the new entry restrictions apply to foreign nationals of Iraq? A. The new entry restrictions do not apply to individuals from Iraq. However, the presidential proclamation does state that foreign nationals from Iraq will be "subject to additional scrutiny to determine if they pose risks to the national security or public safety of the United States." The proclamation does not provide details as to how this additional scrutiny will be applied.
Q: When do the new entry restrictions become effective? A: For foreign nationals that have a relationship with the University of Colorado Colorado Springs (for example as a student, faculty member, visiting scholar, researcher, etc.), the effective date of the new entry restrictions is October 18, 2017.
Q. Can an international student or scholar from one of the eight designated countries who currently has a valid visa leave the U.S. and reenter? A. If the visa is valid on October 18, 2017, the effective date of the presidential proclamation's restrictions, then the international student or scholar may use the valid visa to reenter the U.S. However, given the rapid nature of changes in U.S. entry and travel restrictions in the last year, foreign nationals from one of the designated countries should exercise caution when travelling outside of the U.S.
Q. Is there a waiver process under the new presidential proclamation for someone from one of the eight designated countries whom the entry restrictions affects to apply for a visa on or after October 18, 2017 at the U.S. consulate if there are special circumstances? A. Under the new presidential proclamation, the U.S. Department of State and the U.S. Customs and Border Protection can grant waivers on a case-by-case basis and therefore issue a visa and allow entry to a foreign national which otherwise would be prohibited under the new entry restrictions. However, this decision is up to the discretion of the officer at the U.S. consulate so it may be risky to depart the U.S. as the U.S. Department of State officer may decide not to grant a waiver and visa.
Q. What steps is the university able to take to assist current international students and scholars from the eight designated countries who may be unable to depart the U.S. or fear doing so because of the new entry restrictions? A. For students and scholars, International Affairs is available to assist potentially impacted individuals.
Q. Can International Affairs share who may be specifically impacted by this executive order and any future ones? A. International Affairs can provide information generally to the entire community about which groups of students are affected. Please note that in order to protect the privacy of our international students and scholars, we do not provide the exact numbers of individuals from specific, designated countries impacted by executive orders or other immigration policies. International Affairs provides individualized advising and information to international students and scholars who may be affected. With any changes in immigration policies or rules that may affect international students and scholars visa status, International Affairs posts information on the International Affairs website and communicates directly with affected international students and scholars.
Q. Are there resources available online if I want to read more about the new entry restrictions? A. On the White House website in the Presidential Actions section, you can find the text of the presidential proclamation as well as a related FAQ. The U.S. Department of State website also has information on the new visa and entry restrictions.
Q. What resources are available to international students and scholars if they are feeling stress and/or anxiety? A. Students can utilize counseling/mental health services in the Wellness Center to talk through feelings of anxiety, loneliness, stress, or just to have someone supportive to whom they can talk. The advisors in International Affairs are able to assist with questions or concerns for affected students.
Q. What if an international student or scholar feels hurt or discriminated against? A. The University of Colorado Colorado Springs is fully committed to protecting any student or employee from unlawful discrimination on the basis of race, national origin, or religion. To report an incident or seek assistance, please contact the Office of Institutional Equity: firstname.lastname@example.org, 719-255-4324.
We in International Affairs want you to feel supported, safe, and comfortable during your time at UCCS and in the U.S. Please know that if you need to talk or have any questions, our doors, ears, and hearts are always open. The International Affairs office is located in Copper House (in Summit Village) 9202 (2nd floor). We offer drop-in and by-appointment advising hours Monday through Friday. You can also email us at email@example.com anytime, or call 719-255-5018. International Affairs staff do not provide legal advice, so please consult with an immigration attorney for legal advice regarding your specific situation.
June 27, 2017 - Supreme Court Action on Executive Order
On June 26, 2017, the U.S. Supreme Court issued an order temporarily putting into effect parts of the Executive Order signed by President Trump on March 6, 2017, including the 90-day ban on entry into the United States for individuals from Iran, Libya, Somalia, Sudan, Syria and Yemen. Lower courts had previously issued temporary orders blocking the travel ban and other parts of the Executive Order. The recent Supreme Court order applies to the entire United States.
However, the Supreme Court specifically states in the order that the travel ban does not apply to international students admitted or currently attending U.S. universities and international scholars formally invited to and/or employed by U.S. universities to lecture, conduct research, etc. In general, the Supreme Court order states that the travel ban does not apply to individuals with a close, formal relationship to a person or organization in the U.S. For this reason, we do not expect this decision to have an effect on our current or admitted students or our international scholars.
In the fall, the U.S. Supreme Court will make a permanent decision on whether or not the Executive Order is allowable under U.S. laws.
April 19, 2017 - Executive Orders currently not in effect
At this time, the Executive Orders that were to affect travel and visa issuance for nationals from several countries are not in effect due to court decisions in some U.S. states. International Affairs does not have any information to suggest that current/continuing students in valid F-1 or J-1 status, holding valid passports, visas, and other immigration documents, will be affected in their travels other than greater wait times expected at U.S. entry ports due to increased entry security. However, there is information to suggest that those applying for visas, or needing to renew visas, will face increased processing times. The March 17 Department of State cable to all U.S. consular posts instructs them to limit visa interviews per day to 120, which is expected to create backlogs for all applicants. If you are in this situation (needing to travel and needing to renew your visa) we recommend you make an appointment with your International Affairs international student advisor.
International Affairs continues to recommend that all international students minimize international travel as possible, and take these increased timelines into account if needing to renew a visa.
If you have special travel concerns or feel you may be affected by the Executive Order, you may visit the CBP INFO Center website for additional information. On that page, travelers may also request additional guidance by clicking on the 'Email us your Question' button.
To know more about U.S. Department of State visa issuance updates, please see the announcement page for ongoing alerts and information visa issuance processes and timelines.
March 17, 2017 - Updates about the latest Executive Order
- On March 16, 2017, the U.S. District Court in Maryland issued a nationwide preliminary injunction, preventing the Government from enforcing Executive Order 13780's 90-day entry bar, which had been scheduled to go into effect on March 16, 2017.
- On March 15, 2017, the U.S. District Court in Hawaii issued a nationwide temporary restraining order, preventing the Government from enforcing Executive Order 13780's 90-day entry bar and 120-day refugee entry bar, which had been scheduled to go into effect on March 16, 2017.
Other sections of Executive Order 13780 that are not enjoined by court order became effective at 12:01 a.m. eastern time on March 16, 2017.
March 9, 2017 - Information about the latest Executive Order
To our UCCS international students and scholars: All UCCS international students and scholars are encouraged to carefully read and understand the important information below, and to contact International Affairs with any questions or concerns. Call 719-255-5018 to speak with an international student advisor, or for an appointment. Please also keep in mind that the situation is changing quickly, and updated information will be provided as is it is available.
On March 6, 2017, President Trump signed a new Executive Order entitled "Protecting the Nation from Foreign Terrorist Entry into the United States." The order includes a revised entry ban on nationals of six countries - Iran, Libya, Somalia, Sudan, Syria, and Yemen-for the next 90 days from March 16, 2017. The new order revokes and replaces Executive Order 13769 in its entirety, effective March 16, 2017.
See official information from the U.S. government:
- Executive Order Q & A (Department of Homeland Security)
- Fact Sheet: Protecting the Nation From Foreign Terrorist Entry To The United States
Other Helpful Resources:
- Travel Advisory for Nationals of Certain Countries Pursuant to Executive Orders
- Executive Order Travel Ban: NAFSA Resources
Important details of this Executive Order:
Visa Application Process for Everyone, Regardless of Country of Citizenship
Sec. 9. Visa Interview Security. (a) The Secretary of State shall immediately suspend the Visa Interview Waiver Program and ensure compliance with section 222 of the INA, 8 U.S.C. 1202, which requires that all individuals seeking a nonimmigrant visa undergo an in-person interview, subject to specific statutory exceptions. This suspension shall not apply to any foreign national traveling on a diplomatic or diplomatic-type visa, North Atlantic Treaty Organization visa, C-2 visa for travel to the United Nations, or G-1, G-2, G-3, or G-4 visa; traveling for purposes related to an international organization designated under the IOIA; or traveling for purposes of conducting meetings or business with the United States Government.
This means all F and J visa applicants will be required to apply through an in-person appointment with the U.S. consulate. This would impact any of our international students and scholars and their dependents, regardless of country of citizenship (except for the six countries listed below). One example of this would be the "bank" or "drop off" system used by many Chinese and Indian citizens to "renew" visas.
- If your current F or J visa is still valid, this will not impact you.
- If your current F or J visa is expired but you are staying inside the U.S., then this will not impact you.
- If your F or J visa is expired AND you travel outside the U.S., then you must make an appointment to go to the U.S. consulate in person to renew your visa.
- At this time we cannot predict how appointment wait times and processing times will be impacted, or whether F and J visa applicants will continue to be eligible for priority appointments, as has been the case in the past. We recommend planning ahead as much as possible, and visit the website of the consulate (link is external) where you would renew your visa to see what they list as current wait times.
What about revoked visas? The new order goes on to clarify that, "No immigrant or nonimmigrant visa issued before the effective date of this order shall be revoked pursuant to this order." Furthermore, it states that anyone whose visa was cancelled/revoked due to the original January 27 executive order "shall be entitled to a travel document confirming that the individual is permitted to travel to the United States and seek entry."
Entry Restrictions for Specific Countries
(c) To temporarily reduce investigative burdens on relevant agencies during the review period described in subsection (a) of this section, to ensure the proper review and maximum utilization of available resources for the screening and vetting of foreign nationals, to ensure that adequate standards are established to prevent infiltration by foreign terrorists, and in light of the national security concerns referenced in section 1 of this order, I hereby proclaim, pursuant to sections 212(f) and 215(a) of the INA, 8 U.S.C. 1182(f) and 1185(a), that the unrestricted entry into the United States of nationals of Iran, Libya, Somalia, Sudan, Syria, and Yemen would be detrimental to the interests of the United States. I therefore direct that the entry into the United States of nationals of those six countries be suspended for 90 days from the effective date of this order, subject to the limitations, waivers, and exceptions set forth in sections 3 and 12 of this order.
Individuals from the following countries are impacted by this section.
Nationals of these countries will be restricted from entering the U.S. or obtaining a new visa as follows:
- are outside the U.S. on the effective date of this order
- did not have a valid visa at 5:00 p.m. EST on January 27, 2017, and
- do not have a valid visa on the effective date of this order
Exceptions to the above:
- the suspension of entry to the U.S. will not apply to Lawful Permanent Residents (green card holders)
- any foreign national who is admitted to or paroled into the U.S. on or after the effective date of this order
- any foreign national who has a document other than a visa, valid on the effective date of this order or issued on any date after, that permits him or her to travel to the U.S. to seek entry or admission, such as an advance parole document
- any dual national of one of the above six countries, as long as they are traveling on a passport issued by a non-designated country
- any foreign national traveling on diplomatic, NATO, C-2, G-1, G-2, G-3, or G-4 visas
- any foreign national who has been granted asylum, any refugee who has already been admitted to the U.S., or any individual who has been granted withholding of removal, advance parole, or protection under the Convention Against Torture
Waivers may possibly be granted at the discretion of visa officers or Customs and Border Protection to those who would otherwise be restricted from entering the U.S. Our office cautions that at this point in time it is difficult to know how likely such waivers are to happen. Examples of situations that may qualify for a waiver include:
- foreign nationals who have previously been admitted to the U.S. for a continuous period of work or study (this could be interpreted to potentially apply to F and J students or scholars), were outside the U.S. on the date this order became effective, who seek to reenter the U.S. to resume that activity, and for whom denial of entry would impair the ability to carry out that activity
- foreign nationals who seek to enter the U.S. for significant business or professional obligations and the denial of entry would impair those obligations
- the foreign national seeks to enter the U.S. to visit or reside with a close family member (spouse, child, or parent) who is either a U.S. citizen, permanent resident, or is on a valid nonimmigrant visa, and the denial of entry would cause undue hardship (this appears that F-2 and J-2 dependents could qualify for this)
- the foreign national is traveling as a U.S. government-sponsored exchange visitor
What About Citizens of Iraq?
The above restrictions no longer include Iraq. However, additional processes or scrutiny may now be implemented when attempting to obtain a visa or enter the U.S.
Sec. 4. Additional Inquiries Related to Nationals of Iraq. An application by any Iraqi national for a visa, admission, or other immigration benefit should be subjected to thorough review, including, as appropriate, consultation with a designee of the Secretary of Defense and use of the additional information that has been obtained in the context of the close U.S.Iraqi security partnership, since Executive Order 13769 was issued, concerning individuals suspected of ties to ISIS or other terrorist organizations and individuals coming from territories controlled or formerly controlled by ISIS. Such review shall include consideration of whether the applicant has connections with ISIS or other terrorist organizations or with territory that is or has been under the dominant influence of ISIS, as well as any other information bearing on whether the applicant may be a threat to commit acts of terrorism or otherwise threaten the national security or public safety of the United States.
February 24, 2017 - Latest Updates on the Executive Orders
At the current time, the executive order of January 27 is still not in effect due to various court challenges. It is reported that the Trump administration is still considering a new executive order to limit travel for nationals of the seven countries in the original executive order. News is expected in the coming days.
Feb. 10, 2017 - Latest Updates on Issues Related to Recent Executive Orders on Immigration
A quick update about the Executive Order signed on January 27th, 2017.
The Executive Order is still on hold. In legal terms, the 9th Circuit Court declined to grant a stay of the district court's temporary restraining order. The practical effect of this decision is the Executive Order is still blocked at this time. This means that travel and visa applications, for our F-1 and J-1 status students, should be unaffected. USCIS adjudication processing is also taking place as normal. However, we are still advising students not to travel for the time being.
Our advice for students at this time as covered at our information sessions last Friday (Feb. 3):
- Continue to focus on your studies
- Carry a COPY of your immigration documents at all times
- When you travel in the US, carry your original documents (make sure you have a current signature from our office on your I-20/DS-2019
- If you are planning international travel, we recommend you postpone it for the next 3 months
- Carefully abide by all rules and regulations of your immigration status
If you have specific questions or concerns, please do not hesitate to contact our office at firstname.lastname@example.org. We are continuing to review the 9th Circuit Court decision and what it means to us. Check back for additional information in the coming days.
Feb. 7, 2017 - Latest Updates on Issues Related to Recent Executive Orders on Immigration
To our international students and scholars:
COURT ORDER TEMPORARILY BLOCKING EXECUTIVE ORDER
Late Friday afternoon (Feb. 3), a judge in Washington state issued a temporary order blocking certain sections of the Executive Order signed on January 27, 2017, including the 90-day ban on entry to the United States for individuals from Iran, Iraq, Libya, Somalia, Sudan, Syria and Yemen. The order applies to the entire United States. However, the White House (President Trump's Administration) may appeal the decision, which means that the situation could change quickly and the ban may apply again. Therefore, International Affairs office continues to recommend that individuals from the seven countries listed above do not depart the United States, as they may not be able to return for 90 days and possibly indefinitely.
USCIS WILL ISSUE DECISIONS ON APPLICATIONS FOR IMMIGRATION BENEFITS
Late Friday afternoon, the United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) published on its website that they will process and approve applications for immigration benefits for individuals in the United States from Iran, Iraq, Libya, Somalia, Sudan, Syria and Yemen. This includes applications for benefits such as EADs (Employment Authorization Documents - work permits) for Optional Practical Training for students on F-1 visas, H-1B non-immigrant status, and permanent residency.
U.S. DEPARTMENT OF STATE SAYS IT HAS NO CURRENT PLAN TO ADD COUNTRIES TO TRAVEL BAN
The U.S. Department of State (DOS) recently informed the American Immigration Lawyers Association that at this time the DOS does not know of any official documents that the government is working on that would expand the travel ban and visa revocation to countries other than the seven countries already affected by the Executive Order. In other words, the DOS is stating at this time they do not know of any plans to expand the list of countries under the 90-day ban.
DUAL NATIONALS FROM ONE OF THE SEVEN COUNTRIES
The U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) has published on their website Questions and Answers in which it states that a dual national (that is someone is a citizen/national of one of the seven countries but also a citizen of another country) will be treated based on the passport that s/he presents for admission to the United States. For example, if a student is a citizen of France and also a citizen of Syria, if s/he presents the French passport with a valid F-1 visa stamp, the CBP has stated that they will admit the student to the United States. The DOS also has published on its website that it will issue a visa to an individual who is dual national of one of the seven countries and another unrestricted country if the person has a valid passport from the unrestricted country. If you are a dual national from Iran, Iraq, Libya, Somalia, Sudan, Syria, and Yemen, you should read the CBP and DOS websites carefully and may wish to consult with an immigration attorney.
90-DAY BAN DOES NOT APPLY TO U.S. LAWFUL PERMANENT RESIDENTS (GREEN CARD) HOLDERS
On Friday, the White House released the official document that it sent to the highest officials in the U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS) and the DOS stating that the Executive Order signed on January 27, 2017 does not apply to individuals who are U.S. Lawful Permanent Residents ("green card" holders). The CBP recently updated its Questions and Answers page to indicate that the Executive Order and its restrictions do not apply to U.S. Lawful Permanent Residents.
February 1, 2017: FAQ on Issues Related to Recent Executive Orders on Immigration
Q. How will the executive order issued on January 27, 2017 impact current international students and scholars who hold lawful non-immigrant status who are from one of the seven countries (Iraq, Iran, Syria, Sudan, Libya, Somalia and Yemen)? Will they be allowed to finish the semester and then have to leave? Or will they be required to leave in the middle of the semester?
A: The executive order does not affect the immigration status for those who are already present in the United States as long as they do not depart the country. There is no current indication that the U.S. government will ask them to leave the country as long as they maintain their current immigration status. However, if students or scholars from one of the seven countries leave the United States, they will not be permitted to return for 90 days at minimum and possibly indefinitely.
Q.What happens to students and scholars who have arrived and are currently studying or working at UCCS who are from these countries?
A. These students and scholars continue to work and study under their current visa status. The executive order did not terminate or limit their status.
Q.Will the U.S. Department of Homeland Security try to identify and deport students or scholars and their families from these countries?
A. The executive orders do not direct the Secretary of Homeland Security to take any action including deportation against individuals currently in the United States in lawful immigration status.
Q. Can the International Affairs tell us who may be impacted by this executive order and any future ones?
A. International Affairs can provide information generally to the entire community about which groups of students are affected. International Affairs also provides individualized advising and information to international students and scholars who may be affected. With any changes in immigration policies or rules that may affect international students and scholars visa status, International Affairs sends email messages directly to those impacted and posts the information on its website as well. International Affairs is located in Copper House. International Affairs offers drop-in advising hours Monday through Friday from 8:00am-5:00pm as well as appointments. Also, you can email International Affairs at email@example.com anytime.
Q. What resources are available to international students and scholars if they are feeling stress and/or anxiety?
A. Students can utilize the Counseling Services at the Wellness Center to talk through feelings of anxiety, loneliness, stress, or just to have someone supportive to whom they can talk. This is in addition to the support provided by International Affairs.
Q. What if an international student or scholar feels hurt or discriminated against?
A. The University of Colorado is fully committed to protecting any student or employee from unlawful discrimination on the basis of race, national origin or religion. The UCCS Police will investigate any potential criminal conduct to the fullest extent of the law against any University of Colorado student or employee. To report an incident and seek assistance, the university has resources available to you online at //www.uccs.edu/equity as well as through the International Affairs (719-255-5018 or firstname.lastname@example.org).