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  • News: DOS Fact Sheet: Information Regarding the U.S. Refugee Admissions Program

    Information Regarding the U.S. Refugee Admissions Program

    Fact Sheet
    BUREAU OF POPULATION, REFUGEES, AND MIGRATION
    June 30, 2017


    The Supreme Court’s order in Trump v. International Refugee Assistance Project, No. 16-1436 (June 26, 2017) provides that Sections 6(a) and 6(b) of Executive Order 13780 “may not be enforced against an individual seeking admission as a refugee who can credibly claim a bona fide relationship with a person or entity in the United States.” As stated in the Supreme Court’s order “for individuals, a close familial relationship is required. … As for entities, the relationship must be formal, documented and formed in the ordinary course, rather than for the purpose of evading [the Order].”

    Upon advice of our legal counsel, we are providing the following guidance.

    A refugee who has one of the following relationships with a person already in the United States will be considered to have a credible claim to a bona fide relationship with a person in the United States upon presentation of sufficient documentation or other verifiable information supporting that claim: a parent (including parent-in-law), spouse, fiancé, fiancée, child, adult son or daughter, son-in-law, daughter-in-law, sibling, whether whole or half. This includes step relationships. The following relationships do not qualify: grandparents, grandchildren, aunts, uncles, nieces, nephews, cousins, brothers-in-law and sisters-in-law, and any other “extended” family members.

    A refugee who has a relationship with an entity in the United States that is formal, documented, and formed in the ordinary course will be considered to have a credible claim to a bona fide relationship with that entity upon presentation of sufficient documentation or other verifiable information supporting that claim. The fact that a resettlement agency in the United States has provided a formal assurance for a refugee seeking admission, however, is not sufficient in and of itself to establish a qualifying relationship for that refugee with an entity in the United States.

    We will be providing additional guidance in coming days about the processes for identifying a bona fide relationship with a person or entity in the United States. As a reminder, refugees already scheduled for travel through July 6 will be permitted to travel regardless of whether they have such a relationship.

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