European Union COVID – 19 Update

Effective 17 March, the Schengen Area member states agreed to close the external borders of the Schengen Area to non-essential travel for all non-EU nationals, for a 30-days.The non-Schengen EU member states (Bulgaria, Croatia, Cyprus, Ireland, Romania) as well as the UK will be invited to also implement the restriction. EU and UK citizens would be exempt, as would long-term EU residents. Family members of EU citizens, diplomats, cross-border workers and essential workers such as doctors and nurses.

Third-country nationals who are stranded in the EU and, as a result, overstay their short-stay or long-stay visas, their residence permits, or their authorized visa-free maximum periods of stay, can extend their status. The EU hopes that by adopting this measure, the EU member states will be able to re-open any “internal” borders with other EU members states which they have temporarily closed.

As of 18 March, most Schengen member states have already closed their borders. France – Effective 23 March, until at least 15 April, flights are suspended between mainland France and French overseas territories, including Guadeloupe, La Réunion, Martinique, Mayotte, Saint-Martin and Saint-Barthelemy, as well as between those islands. Effective 17 March, labor offices are closed to the public.

Effective 17 March until further notice, the issuance of all visas is suspended, including applications for which an appointment has already been made.

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