Due to a “recent necessary policy change,” effective May 14, 2021, U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) at the Port of Atlanta will only consider processing § 212(f) national interest exception (NIE) waiver requests for “urgent humanitarian reasons or those involving national security and/or law enforcement matters.” All other requests, including any requests currently pending with CBP Atlanta, “will need to be processed by the U.S. Embassy or Consulate,” CBP said.

On April 26, 2021, the Secretary of State made a national interest determination regarding categories of travelers to be excepted from Presidential Proclamations (PPs) 9984, 9992, and 10143 related to the spread of COVID-19.  As a result of this determination, together with national interest determinations already in place, travelers subject to these proclamations, due to their presence in China, Iran, Brazil, South Africa, the Schengen area, the United Kingdom, and Ireland, who are seeking to provide vital support for critical infrastructure; journalists; and students and certain academics covered by exchange visitor programs, among others, may now qualify for a National Interest Exception (NIE).

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