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March 4, 2020

New Travel Restriction on Iranians: What You Need to Know

On February 29, 2020, President Trump signed a new Presidential Proclamation restricting the entry of individuals who have traveled to Iran in attempts to stymie the spread of the Coronavirus in the United States. These new restrictions go beyond the President’s Muslim Ban and will further limit the entry of Iranians into the U.S. The Proclamation adds Iran onto a previous proclamation restricting travel to the United States from China and was put into effect on March 2nd at 5 P.M. EST. 

Who Does This Effect?

  • Immigrant and non-immigrant (those seeking entry on a temporary basis) visa holders who were physically present in Iran and China in the 14 days before their entry into the United States. 

Who Is Exempted from the Proclamation?

  • Lawful permanent residents, known as green card holders
  • Spouses of U.S. citizens or permanent residents
  • Parents or legal guardians whose U.S. citizen or permanent resident children are under 21 and unmarried
  • Siblings of a U.S. citizen or permanent resident, provided both are under 21 and unmarried
  • Children, foster children, and wards of U.S. citizens or permanent residents
  • Individuals traveling at the invitation of the U. S. Government for a purpose related to containment or mitigation of the virus 
  • Certain air or sea crew traveling to the United States
  • Certain foreign government officials and their family members seeking entry into the United States 
  • Individuals whose entry would not pose a significant risk of introducing, transmitting, or spreading the virus, as determined by the CDC Director or his designee
  • Members of the U.S. Armed Forces and spouses and children of members of the U.S. Armed Forces. 
  • Individuals seeking admission under asylum

What Can We Expect at Ports of Entry for Those Exempt from the Ban?

  • According to the Acting Secretary of the U.S. Department of Homeland Security, Chad Wolf, in reference to the restriction of travelers from China, “the same restrictions now apply to foreign nationals traveling from Iran”
  • According to the Center for Disease Control, those limitations and protocols include:

      • Flights being redirected to one of 11 U.S. airports where the CDC has quarantine stations
      • Being asked about your health and travel and screened for fever, cough, or trouble breathing.
      • Depending on your health and travel history, some restrictions may be placed on your movement for a period of 14 days from the time you left China.
      • If you have a fever, cough, or trouble breathing, the CDC staff at the airport will evaluate you for the virus. At that point, you may be taken to a medical facility for further evaluation and you will not able to complete your travel itinerary. This may result in a 14-day quarantine.

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