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Department of State Clarifies Application of Travel Ban to Dual Nationals

The Department of State issued an alert regarding the Travel Ban on February 2, 2017. This alert clarifies the Trump Executive Order of January 27, 2017, as it applies to dual nationals of a designated country and a country that is not on the Travel Ban list.

Despite this statement, we urge dual nationals of one of the 7 designated countries to seek appropriate legal counsel prior to any attempt to enter or leave the US to minimize any negative impact the Travel Ban may have.

Please see also bottom of page for updated information.

Travel Ban Executive Order of January 27, 2017

On January 27, 2017, President Trump signed Executive Order 13769 formally known as “Protecting the Nation from Terrorist Attacks by Foreign Nationals,” and otherwise known as the Travel Ban or Muslim Ban. The Travel Ban restricted travel to the US for nationals of 7 predominantly Muslim countries, including Sudan, Syria, Somalia, Iran, Libya, Iran and Iraq, among other things.

As a result of the January 27, 2017, Travel Ban, the Department of State temporarily stopped scheduling appointments and halted processing of immigrant and nonimmigrant visa applications for individuals who are nationals of Syria, Iraq, Iran, Libya, Somalia, Sudan, and Yemen.

However, it was unclear on the effective date of January 27, 2017, whether the Travel Ban applied to Lawful Permanent Residents (LPRs) of the US, also known as green card holders, or whether the Travel Ban applied to dual nationals of one of the designated countries and a non-designated country.

Travel Ban Executive Order: Dual Nationals

After widespread opposition and legal challenges to the Travel Ban, the US Department of State later clarified that the Executive Order did not restrict travel of dual nationals from any country with a valid US visa in a passport of an unrestricted country, despite widely published reports of the detention and summary deportation of such dual nationals at airports and border posts throughout the US. Note that a clarification by the US Department of State carries no legal authority.

The Department of State’s clarification of the Travel Ban also noted that US Embassies and Consulates will continue to process visa applications and issue nonimmigrant and immigrant visas to otherwise eligible US visa applicants who apply with a passport from an unrestricted country, even if they hold dual nationality from one of the 7 restricted countries.

Check with your local Embassy or Consulate for country specific information.

Finally, please note that this is a very fluid situation which has been challenged in federal courts throughout the United States. We will provide updates as soon as possible on this site.

Note that the Trump Administration issued an updated Executive Order on March 6, 2017, in response to widespread legal challenge and public opposition to the original Travel Ban. For further information, see also State Department Info, DHS Fact Sheet, DHS Q&A, White House Implementation Memorandum.We summarize the new March 6, 2017, Executive Order here.

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