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In a recent cable communication to American embassies around the world, Secretary of State Rex Tillerson outlined new grounds for denying entry to the United States. Anyone visiting the United States on a visitor visa must follow through on their stated plans for at least three months. If their plans change, it will be assumed that they have lied on their application. This means that they could be liable for deportation and any future visa applications will be put in jeopardy. After three months, any changes to plans may still cause problems but will no longer be considered “willful misrepresentation”.
Until recently, a change of plans was only considered to be a willful misrepresentation within the first month of arriving in the United States. The new changes mean that, if a person arrives in the United States, meets someone, falls in love, gets married within 90 days of their arrival and then applies for a green card, their application would be rejected.
The new rules are thought to be a broad push by the Trump administration to cut down on illegal immigration. The changes won’t have any impact on citizens from certain countries, including much of Europe and countries with long-standing diplomatic ties, including Australia, New Zealand and Japan. The changes will only impact citizens from countries where a visa and consulate interview is required to visit. Citizens from the six countries named in Trump’s controversial travel ban will not be impacted by these changes, as they are still unable to receive visas in almost all circumstances.
During this interview, prospective visitors will need to provide an accurate representation of their plans while visiting the US. If these plans change within 90 days of their arrival, this will have an impact on all future applications. If the visitor is still in the United States after their change of plans, they will also be liable for deportation. Renewing or switching to a new visa will become very difficult if an individual’s plans have changed in the first three months after arrival. A spokesperson for the Federation for American Immigration Reform said: “The burden of proof should be on the people who say their plans have changed.”