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How does the Trump Immigration Ban impact USCIS applications (I-485, N-400, I-90, etc.)?
How will Trump’s Immigration Bad affect applications that are pending with U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services? That is a question we have been getting many times every day. What if you have a naturalization application (N-400)? What if you applied for adjustment of status (I-485)?
Sadly, we have received early indications that all applications by affected foreign nationals will be placed on indefinite hold.
As most know by now, President Trump signed an Executive Order barring citizens of Iran, Iraq, Syria, Sudan, Libya, Yemen and Somalia. As of yesterday, January 29, 2017, the Department of Homeland Security had clarified that greencard holders (lawful permanent residents) from those countries will not be barred.
So far there has been no formal guidance on how the ban will impact nationals from those countries who have pending USCIS applications. We have received two unconfirmed reports, however, that all such applications will be placed on indefinite hold.
That is both good and bad news.
The bad news is obvious. If you are from Iran, Iraq, Syria, Sudan, Libya, Yemen or Somalia, you will be unable to complete any USCIS process that is currently pending. If you applied for naturalization or adjustment of status, the application will not be approved until there is a change in policy. Even if you were scheduled for an interview, or have had your interview, it appears the application will be stopped.
On the other hand, the initial information suggests that pending applications will not be denied. Nor will these individuals automatically be referred for deportation proceedings. Instead, the application will simply be placed on hold.
We will update this post when formal guidelines are made public.
This Post Has 59 Comments
hi i am a us citizen and im married to a Swedish citizen who lives in Sweden and was born there. he also has dual citizenship with Iran because his parents are from there. I want to start a spouse visa application and im worried that his dual citizenship with Iran might cause some issues or denial.
It shouldn’t. A U.S. citizen – dual or not – is as good as any other when it comes to petitioning via the I-130.
The issue is that the INA act mentions that the AOS can only be adjudicated if the individual is admittable to US at the time of adjudication. This means that although an individual could be already present in the US, he needs to be also admittable to the US. Therefore, the travel ban can affect the AOS processing. This is similar to cases where an individual with a pending AOS have previously overstayed on a visa and hence (although already in US) is not addmitable to the US anymore.
“Admissibility” is a term of art under the Immigration and Nationality Act. The Trump Ban doesn’t create a new ground of inadmissibility – and can’t since those are governed by statute. We had an Iranian client approved just last week for adjustment, so fortunately USCIS is not taking the position that all citizens of Trump Ban countries are barred from adjustment.
Hi, Does the travel ban 3.0 that recently has been approved by the Supreme Courts affect change of status from visa to permanent resident? does it affect I765 and I 485 processes.?
No, it shouldn’t.
Did you find more information about Iranian Citizens. My colleagues who applied for I-485 from other countries at the same time with me got their interviews but I have not yet. I wonder if it it has something to do with my nationality?
One of our Client in India is not a citizen of the these 7 countries but was born there. She’s Indian citizen but born in Yemen with pending I 485?
Please guide… https://in.linkedin.com/company/abhinav
Fortunately the Travel Ban does not – and never has – prohibited adjustment of status (I-485) applications from being approved.
My wife American citizen am from Somali my proces dinied 2016 jun reason with relationship we apply again Aug 2016 my wife G-56 interview may 2017 still waiting what happen sir madam
Hi my husband is a Libyan citizen and and US citizen as well we recently applied for his parents green card application to bring them to the US will this affect their application in anyway ? Will it be placed on hold ?
The I-130 petition can still be processed, but it is likely they will not be able to proceed through the visa stage with the Trump travel ban in place.
Do you have any information on AOS application for national of banned countries under travel ban 3.0? Is USCIS processing them or are they placing them on indefinite hold?
Hi, Alex – happily, they should not be impacted. The ban applies only to people outside the US.
I’m a US citizen and I am planning to apply for my husband from Iran. would you tell me how the ban effect in spouse cases?
Hi, Ziba: The ban is currently no in place. But the screening standards for visa applicants are likely to be very tough. Take a look at this training here.
Hello, I am an Iranian, I’ve been in U.S since 2011. I applied for N-400 and had my fingerprint done in Feb/2017. what will happen to my pending case? Am I going to be denied ? If they put me on hold, then how long can take it? Does immigration looking at cases separetly or they just put hold on every single Iranian cases? Thanks
We believe that N-400s will continue to be processed.
I’m waiting for N-400 interwive for more than 15 month too. Is there any action
Yes. You can file a status complaint with USCIS.
I am a Libyan student on F1 visa currently in the U.S. I applied for an OPT a month ago on February 15. Will the new travel ban affect my OPT application? Will USCIS put it on hold?
Also, will the new executive order allow students from the six countries to change status from F1 to H1B or permanent resident while they are in the U.S.?
Hi, Sam: Currently, Travel Ban 2.0 has been stayed by a federal court, so applications should be working as per normal. But even if the ban were to be reinstituted, USCIS has said that at least adjustment applications – and we would hope change of status, though that’s unclear – will proceed as per normal.
I have a question regarding I485 application with the new executive order.
Does that order effect the people who got born in one of those countries? For example, if you were born in Syria but you don’t have Syrian citizen and you have a citizenship from another country who is not part of that order, Does that means you are good? or the order includes the country of birth?
Hi, Jordan: Under current policy, USCIS has announced that I-485 applications will continue to be processed as per normal, even for folks from the Travel Ban 2.0 countries.
I am a dual US-Iranian Citizen.
I started my parents green card process last December and submitted the I-130 Petition for Alien Relative form on Dec 15, 2016.
Does this ban affect or slow down the application?
Thank you in advance.
Hi, Roozbeh: The problem will likely occur not at the I-130 processing stage, but when your parents’ get to the Department of State (DS-260, NVC, consulate) stage. Under the Travel Ban 2.0 they would not be able to proceed to completion of their case. Hopefully, the Travel Ban will either be struck down in court, or the policy will be changed by time your I-130 is completed, since it’s been filed very recently.
does the new immigration ban ( March 6th order), affect pending applications for 485 for individuals inside USA?
second question, can a US citizen apply for visa for his fiance from IRAN?
Hi, Niloo: Currently we believe pending I-485s will not be impacted. But Iran is one of the countries listed on the new Travel Ban: here.
I’m from Libya and have a pending asylum application and work permit. What’s the situation for me? Is the work permit being processed or is it on hold?
Hi, Mihamed: We’re hopeful that folks in the US will be able to continue with their pending applications, which is how the first order was interpreted.
I hope you are able to shine some light and clarification on the ambiguity of the new ban and the restrictions that come with it. I am Iranian citizen who has been a greencard holder for years. I filed to become naturalized last year and finally had my interview a few weeks ago. My oath ceremony is scheduled for the end of this month, so in essence I can claim dual Citizen, US and Iranian. My Fiance (also an Iranian Citizen) has been residing in the US for the last 4 years (8/2013) under a F-1 student visa, recently receiving his Masters Degree in May of 2016. After graduation, he became employed and is working for a company under F-1 Optional Practical Training (OPT). We are planning to get married as soon as I officially become a US Citizen and were going to file 1-485 to adjust his status. Will this ban or restriction prevent us from moving forward with this process of adjusting his status or will not apply to us. The unknown and the ambiguity has become nerve racking and your guidance or clarification would be greatly appreciated.
Hi, Azadeh: Currently DHS is advising that adjustment applications will be processed as per normal
I am a US citizen. My wife, an Indian, has a N400 Application still pending. Has been pending for 3 months. Do you know if these applications have placed on hold as well?
Hi, Jay: No, an Indian national’s N-400 should not be impacted by the executive orders. But there is a backlog of N-400s that is creating delay across the board.
I am married to same sex Iraqi refugee who arrived June 2015 and who submitted application for permanent resident June 2016. Application is pending and I-94 status presumably expires this June. Based on the “hold” for this application as I understand, how will this affect his work status when I-94 expires? Should he now be filing for a different request of permanent status based on marriage status?
Hi, Frank: At least for the moment, Iraqi adjustment applications are not on hold. (That could change immediately if a new travel ban executive order is issued). It’s alright if the I-94 date expires so long as he has a properly filed adjustment application pending. A marriage-based adjustment wouldn’t speed things up *if* he already has a proper adjustment application pending.
if I’m a Tibetan born in India seeking asylum in the US, will i be affected by trumps executive order?
That’s a pretty broad question, but yes, it is possible that asylum processing standards could be more difficult. We are expecting a new executive order soon that could touch on such issues.
my husband is an indian citizen and we just got scheduled our interview for adjustment of status…he already received his work permit and we had the i-130 approval already and have a 9 month old son. He does have an appeals case for deportation as well but it was on hold pending on our approval so should we be worried?
Hi, Miranda: Depending on the status of the deportation case it’s not clear he would be eligible to adjust. If the immigration court has jurisdiction over his case then USCIS cannot issue adjustment of status.
My baby father is from Jamaica, he has overstayed his
Visa and has been here in USA less then 2 years . We planned to get married at the end of March, I’m a born US citizen. Will we have problems filing I485 or he becoming a resident here in the states. he has no criminal records
Hi, Lisa: We wouldn’t be able to say without actually conducting a consultation with your fiance.
Does this apply to a abused spouses i have to apply udner vawa and am not for banner countries I’am from central america
Hi, Ana: The Travel Ban is not currently in effect for any group.
How about for Fiance visas applications? I am not from the banned countries, Im from the Philippines. Will it affect/ slow down my application?
Hi, Nhona: Fortunately Philippines are not impacted by the Executive Order.
Does this affect USCIS processing times for I485 applications in general? Not specifically for the countries in the list but generally is it expected to slow down the adjucation process?
No, other adjustment applications are not currently impacted from what we have seen.
What about someone who is not a citizen of the highlighted 7 countries but was born there? E.g. An Indian citizen but born in Yemen with pending I 485?
Hi, Rahul: You would need to research the law of that country to understand if you are a citizen of the country. (Merely not having a passport doesn’t mean you aren’t a citizen).
What about renewing work authorizations while the applications are pending? I am pending asylum and have TPS. Will I be able to renew work authorization after it expires?
Hi, Sami: Are you from one of the banned countries?
Does this apply to pending employment based I-140 applications for applicants already in the US on H1B?
Hi, Mehdi: The official guidance has not yet been released, but we are concerned that may be the case.
How about a US travel document I-131 for a green card holder based on Asylum case from Iraq?
Hi, Lena: Currently available information suggests that it would not be approved by USCIS.
How about i-751 for conditional removal? I am US citizen, my wife is dual national. We have to apply for her conditional removal soon. I am worried how they will deal with our case.
Hi, Shah: We don’t yet have formal guidance from USCIS on this issue. But leaked information suggests the I-751 will be processed but not approved until the policy is changed. You absolutely need to get it filed or your status will automatically terminate. Some information about I-751s here.
Do you know anything about issuance of green cards to LPR already admitted to US with an immigration visa?