U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) will publish a proposed regulation tomorrow that would set maximum periods of stay for foreign students, exchange visitors, and media personnel. The agency posted a prepublication version of the proposal today. This is the first step in the formal notice-and-comment process, and a final rule would not take effect for several months.

Key Points:

  • The proposed rule is scheduled to be published in the Federal Register on Sept. 25.
  • Today’s posting indicates the final rule will have a 60-day delayed effective date.
  • The agency will accept comments from the public on the proposed rule for a 30-day period ending Oct. 26, and will accept comments on changes to immigration forms for 60 days.
  • ICE is proposing to modify the period of authorized stay for international students, exchange visitors, and media personnel by eliminating the availability of “duration of status” and imposing a fixed period of admission. The proposal would establish new requirements for individuals in those visa categories to maintain and extend their status.
  • In its summary of the rule, the agency reasons that the new regulation will provide predetermined dates for F, J and I nonimmigrants to allow the Department of Homeland Security to better monitor them and evaluate whether they are maintaining their status.

BAL Analysis: Current rules on duration of status (“D/S”) for F, J, and I nonimmigrants will remain in place until a final regulation takes effect. The government will accept comments from the public until Oct. 26 on the proposed regulation, and until Nov. 25 on the form changes required by the rule. ICE must review and consider the comments before finalizing the rule, and may make changes to the rule based on comments it receives. The prepublication version indicates the final rule would have a 60-day delayed effective date. BAL continues to review the proposed rule and assess its impact on foreign nationals.

This alert has been provided by the BAL U.S. Practice group. For additional information, please contact berryapplemanleiden@bal.com.

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