Coronavirus: Breaking News Updates

March 17, 2020

This post was last updated April 23

The COVID-19 outbreak is a rapidly evolving situation.

Envoy Global is closely monitoring the situation and compiling breaking news updates below. Please keep in mind that given the rapid release of updates, this list may not be exhaustive. 

Please do not make any international travel arrangements without checking relevant government websites and consulting your immigration legal team.

For the latest U.S. travel advisories, please click here.

For the latest non-U.S. (global) travel advisories, please click here.

Content in this publication is not intended as legal advice, nor should it be relied on as such. For additional information on the issues discussed, consult an Envoy-affiliated attorney or another qualified professional.


Breaking News Updates

Update April 23

President Trump has signed a presidential proclamation temporarily suspending immigrant visa processing for certain applicants outside of the U.S. This announcement does not apply to non-immigrant visa categories (e.g., H-1B, TN, L) nor does it apply to any immigrant visa processing for individuals already in the U.S.

Click here to read more.

Update March 20

The U.​S. and Mexico mutually agreed to their border to non-essential travel.

The border closure will start March 21 and will be reviewed after 30 days.

Update March 19

The U.S. State Department has issued a Level 4 Travel Advisory. U.S. citizens are advised to avoid all international travel. U.S. citizens who live in the U.S. should immediately return to the U.S. if commercial departures are still available or prepare to shelter in place at their current location if they are willing to remain overseas for an indefinite period. U.S. citizens who live abroad are advised to avoid all international travel.

Update March 18

USCIS has announced it is suspending all in-person services at field offices, asylum offices and Application Support Centers (ASCs) until at least April 1, 2020. This includes all interviews, naturalization ceremonies and biometric appointments. Emergency services will continue during the office closure.

President Trump and Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau mutually agreed to close the U.S. - Canadian border to all "non-essential" travel.

Update March 16

In response to the COVID-19 outbreak, Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau has announced that Canada will be shutting the border to non-Canadian citizens, with the exception of, permanent residents, the immediate family members of Canadian citizens, diplomats, flight crews, and U.S. citizens at this time.

Additionally,  starting Wednesday, March 18, international flights will only be allowed to land in Canada at four airports: Vancouver, Calgary, Toronto and Montreal.

All travelers seeking entry into Canada will have to answer the health screening questions and CBSA officers will be on the lookout for visible signs of illness.

Envoy is closely monitoring the developments and updates will be posted as they come in from the Canadian government.

Update March 15

The White House has expanded its European travel ban to now include the U.K. and Ireland. This will take effect at midnight Eastern Daylight Time on Monday, March 16. In line with the prior European (Schengen Area) travel ban, U.S. citizens and U.S. lawful permanent residents (LPRs) will not be affected. However, the U.S. has indicated that all individuals traveling from countries with a travel ban in place may be asked to self-quarantine for 14 days.

In addition, the U.S. Embassy and consulates in many countries (including India) have indefinitely cancelled immigrant and non-immigrant visa appointments.

Update March 12

In his address to the nation, President Donald Trump announced an expansion to the travel ban. This new travel ban will impact all non-U.S. citizens and non-lawful permanent residents who were physically present within the Schengen Area in the 14 days prior to their attempted entry into the U.S. This travel ban goes into effect March 13 at 11:59 p.m. EDT and is effective for 30 days. Only highly limited exceptions apply to this travel restriction.

The Schengen Area consists of 26 member countries in Europe: Austria, Belgium,  Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Iceland, Italy, Latvia, Lichtenstein, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malta, Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden, and Switzerland.

Additionally, the State Department has issued a Global 3 Health Advisory. As such, the State Department advises U.S. citizens to reconsider any travel abroad.


Contact Your Legal Team

If you are a client with Envoy Global, your global immigration team and affiliated attorney from GIA are ready to help with any questions. Be sure to post to the Envoy platform’s Communication Center with your questions.

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Envoy is pleased to provide you this information, which was prepared in collaboration with Ryan Bay, who is a Partner at Global Immigration Associates, P.C.

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