Feb 09 2017

Temporary Restraining Order Against Entry Ban Remains in Place

United States

United States

Today, the Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit rejected the government’s request to stay a federal district judge's nationwide temporary restraining order (TRO) against President Trump's January 27 entry ban executive order. The ruling means that the entry ban will remain suspended for now. However, future court rulings could reinstate the ban while a federal district court challenge to the executive order continues.

The U.S. Departments of Homeland Security and State Department have been complying with the TRO and are processing travelers as they did before the executive order. However, in light of the ongoing litigation, foreign nationals from Iran, Iraq, Libya, Somalia, Sudan, Syria and Yemen should continue to exercise caution before traveling to or departing from the United States.

If you are a foreign national from one of the seven restricted countries, are not a U.S. lawful permanent resident and do not have a passport from a non-restricted country containing a valid U.S. visa, you should take the following into consideration:

  • If you are currently in the United States, traveling internationally is possible, but remains risky under current circumstances. If the federal government appeals the Ninth Circuit's decision, the Supreme Court could stay the TRO, which would reinstate the ban, or the federal district court refuse to issue a preliminary injunction against the ban. Alternatively, the district court could issue a preliminary injunction against the ban but limit its applicability to certain classes only, such as permanent residents or – as the government has requested – foreign nationals who were previously admitted to the United States and are temporarily abroad now or who wish to travel abroad and return to the United States in the future. If the entry ban is reinstated in whole or in part while you are outside of the United States, you may be unable to return for the duration of the ban.
  • If you are currently outside the United States, contact your Fragomen professional immediately to discuss the timing of return and any specific issues that may arise while the court challenge to the entry ban continues. Given the ongoing litigation, the window to travel to the United States may be brief.
  • If you decide to travel in either of the circumstances identified above, you must have a valid U.S. visa in your passport. If your visa has been physically cancelled, please contact your Fragomen professional to discuss next steps.

As a reminder, if you are a U.S. lawful permanent resident from one of the seven countries of concern, the entry ban should not affect you and your ability to travel if it is reinstated. Similarly, if you are a dual national and hold a passport from an unrestricted country containing a valid U.S. visa, you should be eligible to enter the United States even if the executive order is reinstated. If you are a nonimmigrant, you should contact your Fragomen professional before undertaking any travel.

Fragomen is closely monitoring the status of the entry ban and the travel situation on the ground, and will provide updates as developments occur. This alert is for informational purposes only. If you have any questions, please contact the immigration professional with whom you work at Fragomen.

© 2017 Fragomen, Del Rey, Bernsen & Loewy, LLP, Fragomen Global LLP and affiliates. All Rights Reserved.