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State Department, Aug. 12, 2020
"On June 22, the President signed Presidential Proclamation (P.P.) 10052, which extends P.P. 10014, which suspended the entry to the United States of certain immigrant visa applicants, through December 31, 2020. P.P. 10052 also suspends the entry to the United States of certain additional foreign nationals who present a risk to the U.S. labor market during the economic recovery following the 2019 novel coronavirus outbreak. Specifically, the suspension applies to applicants for H-1B, H-2B, and L-1 visas; J-1 visa applicants participating in the intern, trainee, teacher, camp counselor, au pair, or summer work travel programs; and any spouses or children of covered applicants applying for H-4, L-2, or J-2 visas.
The Proclamation does not apply to applicants who were in the United States on the effective date of the Proclamation (June 24), or who had a valid visa in the classifications mentioned above (and plans to enter the United States on that visa), or who had another official travel document valid on the effective date of the Proclamation. If an H-1B, H-2B, L-1, or J-1 non-immigrant is not subject to the Proclamation, then neither that individual nor the individual’s spouse or children will be prevented from obtaining a visa due to the Proclamation. The Department of State is committed to implementing this Proclamation in an orderly fashion in conjunction with the Department of Homeland Security and interagency partners and in accordance with all applicable laws and regulations.
Both P.P. 10014 and 10052 include exceptions, including an exception for individuals whose travel would be in the national interest, as determined by the Secretary of State, the Secretary of Homeland Security, or their respective designees. The list below is a non-exclusive list of the types of travel that may be considered to be in the national interest, based on determinations made by the Assistant Secretary of State for Consular Affairs, exercising the authority delegated to him by the Secretary of State under Section 2(b)(iv) of P.P. 10014 and 3(b)(iv) of P.P. 10052.
Until complete resumption of routine visa services, applicants who appear to be subject to entry restrictions under P.P. 10014, P.P. 10052, and/or regional-focused Presidential Proclamations related to COVID-19 (P.P. 9984, 9992, 9993, 9996, and/ or 10041) might not be processed for a visa interview appointment unless the applicant also appears to be eligible for an exception under the applicable Proclamation(s). Applicants who are subject to any of these Proclamations, but who believe they may qualify for a national interest exception or other exception, should follow the instructions on the nearest U.S. Embassy or Consulate’s website regarding procedures necessary to request an emergency appointment and should provide specific details as to why they believe they may qualify for an exception. While a visa applicant subject to one or more Proclamations might meet an exception, the applicant must first be approved for an emergency appointment request and a final determination regarding visa eligibility will be made at the time of visa interview. Please note that U.S. Embassies and Consulates may only be able to offer limited visa services due to the COVID-19 pandemic, in which case they may not be able to accommodate your request unless the proposed travel is deemed emergency or mission critical. Prospective visa applicants should visit the website for Embassy or Consulate where they intend to apply for a visa to get updates on current operating status. Travelers who are subject to a regional COVID-19 Proclamation but who do not require a visa, such as ESTA travelers (i.e., those traveling on the Visa Waiver Program), should also follow the guidance on the nearest Embassy or Consulate’s website for how to request consideration for a national interest exception.
Exceptions under P.P. 10052 for certain travel in the national interest by nonimmigrants may include the following:
L-1A applicants seeking to establish a new office in the United States likely do NOT fall into this category, unless two of the three criteria are met AND the new office will employ, directly or indirectly, five or more U.S. workers.
H-4, L-2, and J-2 applicants
Exceptions under P.P. 10014 for certain travel in the national interest by immigrants may include the following:
Travelers who believe their travel falls into one of these categories or is otherwise in the national interest may request a visa application appointment at the closest Embassy or Consulate and a decision will be made at the time of interview as to whether the traveler has established that they are eligible for a visa pursuant to an exception. Travelers are encouraged to refer to the Embassy/Consulate website for detailed instructions on what services are currently available and how to request an appointment.
Applicants for immigrant visas covered by Presidential Proclamation 10014, as extended by P.P. 10052, including Diversity Visa 2020 (DV-2020) applicants, who have not been issued an immigrant visa as of April 23, are subject to the proclamation's restrictions unless they can establish that they are eligible for an exception. No valid visas will be revoked under this proclamation."