Court Allows Implementation of Presidential Proclamation Attacking Immediate Family Immigration

On December 31, 2020, a federal appeals court approved the implementation of a Presidential Proclamation barring visa issuance to intending immigrants unable to show either that they can private-pay for their medical care in the U.S. or that they will have unsubsidized health insurance within 30 days after entry.

The Presidential Proclamation, issued in October 2019, had been blocked by court orders while litigation challenging its legality was underway.  Maine was one of several states that sued to strike down the Presidential Proclamation

As MeBIC has noted earlier, this Presidential Proclamation would slash annual immigration by hundreds of thousands annually, with the impact falling hardest on intending immigrant immediate family members of U.S. citizens and permanent residents, and people applying to immigrate after selection in the Diversity Visa lottery.  Immigrants through employment are typically immigrating through professional level jobs that are likely to offer health insurance as an employee benefit.

Due to subsequent presidential proclamations issued during COVID-19 suspending entry of most immigrants to prevent job competition, this court ruling, which would take effect in mid-February, will have little immediate practical impact.   It’s likely that the Presidential Proclamation will be one of many that the Biden administration will reverse within its first 100 days.