Immigration Law During the COVID-19 Pandemic

Lawyers Guide

The coronavirus has affected immigrant law immensely. In this guide, learn how immigrant laws are changing to cope with the pandemic, and how this may affect people hoping to come to the United States and those who are already in the country.

  • ContentTrump to Temporarily Suspend All Immigration into the U.S.

    Late Monday, April 20, 2020 President Trump tweeted that he intends to sign an Executive Order temporarily suspending “all immigration” into the United States. Trump’s surprise announcement has ignited much speculation over what this means—but at the time of this writing, speculation is all we have. No formal, legal executive proclamation has been published. So we have no details regarding the tangible implications of any contemplated proclamation.

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  • ContentCOVID-19 Immigration: New Executive Order Delays Some Green Card Processes, Most Cases Unaffected

    Late Wednesday, April 22, 2020, the White House published the formal Executive Order that President Trump announced he was going to sign on Monday, April 20, 2020. The Executive Order, “Proclamation Suspending Entry of Immigrants Who Present Risk to the U.S. Labor Market During the Economic Recovery Following the COVID-19 Outbreak” affects only a limited number of immigration matters currently pending before US consulates abroad which have all already suspended routine visa processing due to COVID-19 since March 20, 2020.

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  • ContentEmergency Accommodations for ESTA Visitors Who Cannot Depart the U.S. on Time Due to COVID-19

    US Customs and Border Protection (CBP) is now implementing procedures for Visa Waiver Program (VWP) visitors who have travelled to the US with Electronic System for Travel Authorization (ESTA) approval—but who cannot depart the US before their 90 day admission period due to COVID-19 related travel restrictions—to request emergency 30-day extensions of their admission period directly at CBP offices at certain airports throughout the US.

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  • ContentReceiving Covid-19 Stimulus Check, Unemployment Insurance Will Not Hurt Your Immigration Status

    For foreign nationals in the US with lawful permanent resident status or unrestricted employment authorization documents (EAD)—such as those based on pending Adjustment of Status applications, pending asylum applications, TPS, DACA, OPT students, etc., the answer is generally that yes, you are eligible for COVID-19 related “Recovery Rebates” stimulus funds and unemployment benefits, and no, receiving such funds will not harm your immigration status.

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  • ContentTo Close or Not to Close: Detained Removal Proceedings in The Era of COVID-19

    Determining whether to shut down detained removal proceedings during the era of COVID-19 requires a lot of difficult issues: protecting the rights of the immigrant population versus assuring that each detainee has swift access to have their day in court. Balancing these factors is the challenge facing the United States government.

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