On August 12, 2020, U.S. Department of State has issued a new advisory with new details and substantially broadened exceptions to the general ban on issuance of new H/L/J visas.
For example, the following qualifications are applicable to L-1 Visa applicants:
Travel by a senior-level executive or manager filling a critical business need of an employer meeting a critical infrastructure need. Critical infrastructure sectors include chemical, communications, dams, defense industrial base, emergency services, energy, financial services, food and agriculture, government facilities, healthcare and public health, information technology, nuclear reactors, transportation, and water systems. An L-1A applicant falls into this category when at least two of the following three indicators are present AND the L-1A applicant is not seeking to establish a new office in the United States:
1. Will be a senior-level executive or manager;
2. Has spent multiple years with the company overseas, indicating a substantial knowledge and expertise within the organization that can only be replicated by a new employee within the company following extensive training that would cause the employer financial hardship; or
3. Will fill a critical business need for a company meeting a critical infrastructure need.
Similar qualifications are established for H-1B, H-2B, or J-1.
Each case would require individualized analysis.