Chasing Down the Rumors: Possible Extension and Expansion of Presidential Proclamation Suspending Entry of Certain Immigrants into the United States (Updated 6/9/20)
AILA Doc. No. 16112144 | Dated June 9, 2020
Get the latest updates from AILA on rumored (and real) policy and procedural changes at the federal agencies under the Trump administration.
If you hear a rumor about change in policy or are told of a potential or current change from a government attorney, agent, or representative, post a message on the AILA Message Center under "Liaison with Government Agencies." AILA Liaison Committees and staff are actively monitoring this forum and will follow up on rumors to get to the truth. Updates will be posted here, at "Chasing Down the Rumors…"
There are also a number of steps you can take on your own to determine whether a new policy that you hear about from an officer, attorney, or adjudicator is truth or rumor, including working with your local agency offices and your local chapter officials and liaisons. For more information, see AILA’s Member Alert, Communicating Rumors and Policy Changes in a New Administration.
What We Are Hearing About the Expansion of Presidential Proclamation 10014
Since the April 22, 2020, announcement of Presidential Proclamation 10014, "Suspending Entry of Immigrants Who Present Risk to the U.S. Labor Market During the Economic Recovery Following the COVID-19 Outbreak" (85 FR 23441, 4/27/20), we have all been waiting for the other shoe to drop. That proclamation threatened not only the extension of the existing proclamation within 60 days, but also the expansion to nonimmigrant visas. AILA has been working hard to understand what may be included in any possible expansion. Here’s what we know so far, but this is all still in flux and is subject to change until the Proclamation is issued. AILA will continue to monitor and provide updates as appropriate.
- The President may be deciding on the scope and timing of the proclamation as early as June 11, 2020.
- The proclamation could be issued as soon as June 15, 2020, and will likely be issued by the end of June.
- The proclamation could be in effect for as long as 90 to 180 days.
- Proclamation barring entry to the U.S. for H-1B, H-2B, L-1 and J-1 for a temporary period pursuant to INA 212(f) and 215(a).
- Intent is to impact FY 2021 H-1B cap-subject cases with October 1, 2020, start dates.
- No consensus on what will happen for L-1s, but there could be an exemption for the L-1A visa category (intracompany transferee executives and managers).
- Not clear which of the J-1 subcategories would be impacted, but likely to impact the Summer Work Travel (SWT) program, camp counselor, intern and trainee programs.
- Proclamation will announce a temporary ban on the entry of nonimmigrant workers, but will likely NOT announce or describe other substantive policy changes which are expected to follow in regulatory proposals.
- Proclamation will include exceptions, such as:
- COVID-19 related exemptions, such as for health care workers
- Food supply related exemptions
- For U.S. employers who conduct additional recruitment efforts.
Possible Subsequent Regulations
Potential rulemakings in the works as early as July on H-1B, OPT, and H-4. It is unclear if these will go through the notice and comment process.
- Rescind the STEM OPT regulation and add requirements to the 12-month Optional Practical Training (OPT) program.
- Issue the Strengthening the H-1B Nonimmigrant Visa Classification Program regulation
- Focus on employer-employee relations, specialty occupation definition, and wage levels.
- Add $20,000 (or higher) fee.
- Rescind the H-4 Employment Authorization Rule
- Possible rescission of employment authorization for asylees, refugees, and temporary protected status (TPS) holders.
At this time, business groups and executives are focused on outreach to key White House officials, agency leaders, and Republican lawmakers to underscore the harm that an expansion of the proclamation, would have on our economic recovery.
AILA recognizes that many of the proposals seem to be legally questionable and we are working with partners to consider any possible litigation.