President Biden Revokes Trump's Visa Ban - Immigration News for February 26, 2021
Peri B. Edelman | February 26, 2021
Some of my clients have started to receive visa appointments and adjustment of status interviews. Please be patient with adjudication and scheduling.
President Biden Revokes Trump’s Visa Ban
In a proclamation issued on Wednesday, Biden officially rescinded the rule, asserting that the proclamation “does not advance the interests of the United States.” President Biden said, “To the contrary, it harms the United States, including by preventing certain family members of United States citizens and lawful permanent residents from joining their families here.”
Due to Trump's visa ban, a US State Department spokesperson confirmed there were at least 473,000 immigrant visa applicants still awaiting an interview.
Meanwhile, other would-be visa beneficiaries are still affected by Presidential Proclamation 10052, which continues to block certain work visa applicants from entering the US during the country’s economic recovery from the pandemic, at least until next month, as well as rules blocking visa issuance to applicants in the Schengen area, Iran, China, Brazil and South Africa.
ICE Issues a Memo on Temporary Enforcement Priorities
On February 18, 2021, the U.S. Department of Homeland Security issued interim guidance in support of the interim civil immigration enforcement and removal priorities which is effective immediately.
The interim priorities do not require or prohibit the arrest, detention, or removal of any noncitizen. ICE officers are expected to exercise their discretion thoughtfully.
- Priority Category 1: National Security
- Priority Category 2: Border Security - If a noncitizen was apprehended at the border on or after November 1, 2020; or if noncitizen was not physically present in the U.S. before November 1, 2020.
- Priority Category 3: Public Safety - If a noncitizen has been convicted of an aggravated felony.
The guidance is intended to be temporary and will be replaced by enforcement guidelines from Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas, expected within 90 days, the memo adds.
The interim guidance orders ICE officials to report certain enforcement information weekly for Mayorkas to use in formulating permanent guidance.
President Biden Revokes Trump Changes to Citizenship Test for Immigrants
On Monday, the Biden administration revoked changes to the citizenship test for noncitizens that were adopted in the last days of the Trump administration. With the exception of a few test administrations over the next few weeks (where some applicants will have the option of taking either the new or old versions of the test, in order to accommodate those who studied for the 2020 version on the expectation that it would be the one they would have to pass), USCIS is going to revert to the 2008 version for testing. This should be a great relief to noncitizens.
The Hyperlinks for the Most Recent Information Relating to Immigrant and Non-Immigrant Visa Scheduling Status in the United States Embassy/ U.S. Consulate General for the Following Countries:
I have been receiving many calls as to when a visa appointment will be scheduled. Many foreign Consulates have not scheduled any immigrant visa appointments since the pandemic began. Please be patient. If your case is in the queue, it will be scheduled once Consulate resume processing.
If you believe a recent change applies to you, please contact my office. If you know someone who it applies to, please refer them to my office. Thank you.
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