SCOTUS Issues Decision on Travel Ban

In an opinion issued Monday, June 26, 2017, the U.S. Supreme Court reviewed the decisions of two federal appeals courts that blocked President Trump’s revised executive order.  The revised order sought to temporarily block entry of foreign nationals from six designated countries (Iran, Yemen, Sudan, Syria, Somalia and Syria), and suspend the refugee program for 120 days.

The Court allowed the travel ban to go into partial effect “with respect to foreign nationals who lack any bona fide relationship with a person or entity in the United States…” , starting Thursday July 29 and continuing for 90 days.

This means that foreign nationals with a valid visa, and who can demonstrate a bona fide family relationship, or those who can demonstrate a bona fide relationship to an entity in the United States, will still be admitted to the United States.

Foreign nationals from the listed countries who have visas for work and study, and can demonstrate a relationship that is “formal, documented, and formed in the ordinary course, rather than for the purpose of evading” the travel ban, can be admitted to the U.S.   Specific examples given by the court include; students who have been admitted to an American university, workers who have accepted an offer of employment in the U.S., and a lecturer invited to address an American audience.

Foreign nationals who are able to demonstrate a “close familial relationship” to someone in the United States and wish to seek entry in order “to live with or visit a family member” would also not be subject to the ban.

The Court also allowed President Trump’s temporary suspension of the refugee program, but only for individuals unable to “credibly claim a bona fide relationship with a person or entity in the United States.”

The Court consolidated both cases, and will hear arguments in October when it is back in session.

FSVS strongly advises nationals of the listed countries who are currently in the U.S. to speak with an immigration attorney before travelling outside the U.S., in order to thoroughly assess their risks and options.