TN Status Still Available at the U.S. Land Border and Pre-Flight Inspection

By Eileen M. Martin

July 16, 2020 | Immigration
Canadians wishing to apply for TN status to work in the U.S. can still do so at both the land borders and pre-flight inspection where previously available throughout Canada, subject to certain considerations and limitations. 
 
In general, there are two main issues for individuals crossing the border into the U.S. as of July 2020:
 
  1. Those applicants who have been in certain countries in the last 14 days are not permitted to enter the U.S. (currently including but not limited to most foreign national applicants for U.S. entry who are coming from Schengen Area countries, the UK, the Republic of Ireland, Brazil, China and Iran); and 
  2. Those coming by land cannot enter for non-essential purposes, defined as tourism and recreation.  
 
If applicants are entering by air, there is no non-essential test; even visitors for pleasure are still permitted to fly into U.S. destinations.  
 
As such, widespread media reports of a “border shut-down” are grossly exaggerated. 
 
Canadian applicants for U.S. entry—including those applying for TN status and all others—may be deterred from entering the U.S. due to Canadian restrictions, which are much more limiting than those for entering the U.S.  Canada’s 14-day quarantine for all people entering or returning to Canada from the U.S. means that leaving Canada may be prohibitive at this time for Canadians, who often cannot afford to be stuck at home and unable to physically attend work or work-related meetings. Exemptions are available in certain circumstances and industries, but are extremely difficult to obtain and are subject to the discretion of the admitting Canada Border Services Agency (CBSA) officer.

Disclaimer: The information in this post is provided for general informational purposes only, and may not reflect the current law in your jurisdiction. No information contained in this post should be construed as legal advice from our firm or the individual author, nor is it intended to be a substitute for legal counsel on any subject matter. No reader of this post should act or refrain from acting on the basis of any information included in, or accessible through, this post without seeking the appropriate legal or other professional advice on the particular facts and circumstances at issue from a lawyer licensed in the recipient’s state, country or other appropriate licensing jurisdiction.


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