Blog by Pasricha & Patel, LLC

Nonimmigrant Visa Ban Expires on March 31, 2021, but Resumption of Visa Services Will Remain Slow

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Pasricha & Patel

The U.S. Department of State (DOS) has announced that White House Proclamation 10052, which had temporarily suspended the entry of certain H-1B, H-2B, J (for certain categories of the Exchange Visitor Program), and L nonimmigrants, has expired on March 31, 2021.

The DOS explains that those visa applicants who have not yet been interviewed or scheduled for an interview will have their applications prioritized and processed based on phased-in resumption of visa services as determined by each U.S. consulate on a post-by-post basis around the world. For those visa applicants who were previously refused visas due to the proclamations’ restrictions, they may reapply by submitting a new visa application and pay a new visa fee.

Importantly, this does not mean that visa issuances will begin in earnest right away. The DOS does clarify that visa applicants must monitor each U.S. consulate’s operational procedures as different embassies and consulates will have different safety procedures in place depending on how local conditions react to the COVID-19 pandemic crisis. That means that most visa applicants will still need to be patient and wait for their local U.S. consulates and embassies to resume more normal operations before they can expect to secure visa appointments.

We suggest readers who may wish to schedule visa appointments to check with the websites of their nearest U.S. consulates and embassies to find out what their particular visa appointment safety guidelines are before trying to secure visa appointments at those particular consular posts.

Should you have any questions about this latest development, or if you have any specific questions about your specific case, we encourage you to contact our office to schedule formal consultation and we can discuss your matter in more detail.