Resource Center: Novel Coronavirus (COVID-19)
Here are some updates:
July 22, 2020, the Department of State announced that certain business travelers, investors, treaty traders, academics, and students from the Schengen Area, the United Kingdom, and Ireland may qualify for National Interest Exceptions under Presidential Proclamation.
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.
In response to significant worldwide challenges related COVID-19, DEPARTMENT OF STATE SUSPENDED ROUTINE VISA SERVICES worldwide. Certain consular posts have resumed services. Each post will reopen on their own timeline based on the situation in the respective country.
USCIS IS ACCEPTING REPRODUCED SIGNATURES. Due to the ongoing COVID-19 National Emergency, USCIS is accepting all benefit forms and documents with reproduced (scanned, faxed, photocopied, or similarly reproduced) original signatures. For forms that require an original “wet” signature, USCIS is 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 September 11, 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 remain closed to “non-essential” travel (tourism or recreational in nature) until October 21, 2020. Travel for work is considered “essential”, but there are mixed reports concerning business adjudications.
US BORDER WITH MEXICO: CBP issued a notification of the continuation of temporary travel restrictions limiting travel of individuals from Mexico into the United States at land ports of entry along the United States-Mexico border through August 20, 2020 due to COVID-19.
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.