Welcome back to the Immigration Lawyer Blog, where we discuss all things immigration. In this video, attorney Jacob Sapochnick provides an important update for international students studying in the United States during the upcoming Fall semester.
Stay tuned to find out more.
On July 6th international students were shocked to find out that the federal government introduced new guidelines preventing students from attending schools with online instruction only during the Fall 2020 semester.
The new guidelines, released by Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE), provided that students enrolled in schools with online only instruction would not be issued visas, and CBP would not permit these students to enter the U.S. from abroad, despite rising Coronavirus cases nationwide. Additionally, the announcement stated that students already in the United States enrolled in an online only study program would need to transfer to a school providing hybrid or in-person instruction, in order to remain in lawful status in the United States. Students who failed to transfer would be required to depart the country immediately.
Fortunately, Harvard and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) stood up for international students nationwide and swiftly filed a lawsuit against the government to prevent the guidelines from being enforced. The lawsuit sought a temporary and permanent court order/injunction to stop the government from enforcing any part of the new guidelines on students and universities.
The judge in that case had scheduled an emergency hearing on July 14th to hear oral arguments from the universities and the government.
In a surprising turn of events, just before the hearing was scheduled to begin, the judge announced that the government reached an agreement to rescind the new police in its entirety.
From the Court Docket: Harvard and MIT vs. DHS/ICE re: International Students
“Hearing held on 7/14/2020. The Court was informed by the parties that they have come to a resolution to the combined temporary restraining order/preliminary injunction motions. The Government has agreed to rescind the July 6, 2020 Policy Directive and the July 7, 2020 FAQ, and has also agreed to rescind their implementation. The Government will return to the March 9, 2020 and March 13, 2020 policy.”