Here are some updates:
On April 23, 2020, President Trump signed a Proclamation Suspending Entry of Immigrants Who Present Risk to the U.S. Labor Market During the Economic Recovery Following the
COVID-19. The US entry is suspended for 60 days to individuals who are outside the US, do not have an immigrant visa and do not have an official travel document other than a visa (such as a transportation letter, an appropriate boarding foil, or an advance parole document) that is valid on the effective date of this proclamation or issued on any date thereafter that permits him or her to travel to the United States and seek entry or admission. The proclamation includes several exemptions, such as legal permanent residents, health care professionals, spouses of US citizens, EB-5 investors, etc.
The President of the United States has declared a PUBLIC HEALTH EMERGENCY in response to the spread of the COVID-19 virus.
DEPARTMENT OF STATE announced that in response to significant worldwide challenges related COVID-19, it SUSPENDED ROUTINE VISA SERVICES worldwide. As resources allow, embassies and consulates continue to provide emergency and mission critical visa services. Services to U.S. citizens continue to be available.
USCIS SUSPENDED ALL ROUTINE FACE-TO-FACE SERVICES. Temporary Office Closure Extended until June 3, 2020. To protect its workforce and to help mitigate the spread of Coronavirus Disease (COVID-19), U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) suspended all routine face-to-face services, including all interviews, biometric collection appointments and naturalization ceremonies.
USCIS WILL ACCEPT REPRODUCED SIGNATURES. USCIS announced that, due to the ongoing COVID-19 National Emergency, they will accept all benefit forms and documents with reproduced (scanned, faxed, photocopied, or similarly reproduced) original signatures. For forms that require an original “wet” signature, USCIS will accept electronically reproduced original signatures for the duration of the National Emergency.
USCIS ANNOUNCES FLEXIBILITY FOR REQUESTS FOR EVIDENCE (RFE), Notices of Intent to Deny (NOID): For RFE or NOID dated between March 1 and May 1, 2020, any responses submitted within 60 calendar days after the response deadline set forth in the RFE or NOID will be considered by USCIS before any action is taken.
US BORDER WITH CANADA: Land ports and ferries were closed to “non-essential” travel (tourism or recreational in nature). Travel for work is considered “essential”, but there are mixed reports concerning business adjudications.
US BANKRUPTCY COURT IN PHOENIX: In order to protect public health through the aim or reducing the size of public gatherings, as well as balancing the fair administration of justice, all trials and hearings which require the presentation of evidence have been vacated and will be resent by the Judge. All other hearings are being conducted telephonically with no live appearances permitted in the courtrooms. All 341 hearings for all Chapters (including continued hearings) are being conducted virtually. Please watch the docket and contact the Trustees for the new date.
Our thoughts go out to everyone that is impacted by the coronavirus pandemic.