Amid the confusion over President Donald Trump’s executive order limiting immigration, immigrants — those living in the United States and those wanting to travel here — are understandably worried. Here are some things you need to know:
How do I know if it affects me?
For now, President Trump’s executive order affects citizens of seven Muslim-majority countries.
They are: Iraq, Iran, Libya, Somalia, Sudan, Syria and Yemen. But the executive order also makes clear those seven countries are just a starting point for a likely broader ban that might include more countries.
What can I do to protect myself?
If you’re a citizen of any of the countries listed above, do not travel outside the US at least for the next 90 days.
If you have a green card (that is, if you’re a lawful permanent resident of the US), you should be fine. That’s the latest from the White House, which has gone back and forth. First it said, the order would include green card holders. Then it said, their situation will be considered on a case-by-case basis. And now, it says, “as far as green card holders moving forward, it doesn’t affect them.”
What if I have an emergency and I have to travel?
If you absolutely HAVE to travel, please consult an immigration lawyer first.
What if I am already abroad and need to travel back to the US?
If you’re a citizen of any of the countries listed above, you may have difficulty getting back into the US.
If you’re a lawful permanent resident of the US from any of the countries above, get in touch with an immigration lawyer before flying back. Even though the White House’s latest guidance is green card holders won’t be affected, it’s best to check.
What if I’m a naturalized US citizen?
If you’re an American citizen, you should be fine — even if you are from one of the targeted countries.
Can my relatives fly back with me if I’m a citizen?
Not if you’re from one of the countries listed above. In that case, your relatives may face difficulties at immigration upon entering the US.
What if I have family or friends who were waiting to resettle to the US as refugees?
The executive order also halted the refugee program, at least for the next 120 days. This applies to all refugees, not just those from the seven countries above.
In the case of Syria, the resettlement process has been halted indefinitely.
What else do I need to know?
Know your rights. The Immigration Defense Project has prepared a flyer that outlines how to lawfully interact with Immigration and Customs Enforcement agents if they come to your house.
You can find the flyer here.