U.S.-Canadian border temporarily closed to ‘non-essential traffic’ because of Coronavirus outbreak

The U.S. border with Canada will temporarily close to "non-essential traffic" because of the Coronavirus outbreak, the two countries announced earlier this week.

Trade between the nations will not be impacted, according to U.S. President Donald Trump.

"We will be, by mutual consent, temporarily closing our Northern Border with Canada to non-essential traffic," Trump wrote on Twitter earlier this week. "Trade will not be affected."

The closure of the U.S.-Canadian border is expected to have the following impacts:

  • U.S. citizens and those who have been living in the country for at least the last 14 days will not be able to travel to Canada for tourism or recreational purposes until the policy is lifted.
  • U.S. citizens with Canadian work permits will, likely, continue to have the ability to enter Canada but will need to self-isolate for 14 days after their arrival.
  • Essential travel will continue to be permitted in order to not disrupt trade


Canadian prime minister Justin Trudeau said at a press conference earlier this week that "supply chains, including trucking, will not be affected" by the new measure.

"Our governments recognize that we (must) preserve supply chains between both countries," Trudeau said. "These supply chains ensure that food, fuel and life-saving medicines reach people on both sides of the border."

There have been at least 207,000 confirmed cases of the Coronavirus (COVID-19) worldwide, including more than 7,000 in the U.S. and 550 in Canada as of Thursday, March 19, according to the World Health Organization, which officially declared the outbreak a pandemic in mid-March.

Those whose status could be affected by the pandemic should consult with experienced immigration counsel to evaluate their options before making any decisions regarding the Coronavirus and immigration-based matters.

Garfinkel Immigration Law Firm continues to monitor the situation closely. Our attorneys are actively identifying specifically impacted cases and advising our clients accordingly.

As always, do not hesitate to call us at 704-442-8000 or contact us via email with any questions or concerns.

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