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TPS – Temporary Protected Status

Temporary Protective Status (TPS) is granted by the Secretary of the Department of Homeland Security. TPS is a form of humanitarian immigration relief that allows foreign nationals from certain countries to remain in the United States for a limited period of time.  TPS provides temporary protection from deportation and permission to work legally in the United States. TPS also offers access to travel documents, allowing TPS recipients to travel outside the United States (but not to the country that has been determined to be unsafe which resulted in the granting of TPS status) and return without fear of being denied re-entry. If TPS is granted, it can provide peace of mind for those facing dangerous conditions in their home countries.

What are the requirements to obtain TPS application?

TPS status is granted to people who are unable to safely return to their home country due to the following temporary conditions;

  • Ongoing armed conflict (such as civil war),
  • An environmental disaster (such as an earth quake or hurricane) or an epidemic
  • Other extraordinary and temporary conditions

As of March 2023, the countries that have been designated for TPS relief are- Afghanistan (valid through November 20, 2023),  Burma (valid through May 25, 2024), Cameroon (valid through December 7, 2023), El Salvador (extended until June 30, 2024), Ethiopia (valid through June 12, 2024), Haiti (valid through August 3, 2024) , Honduras (extended until June 30, 2024), Nepal (extended until June 30, 2024), Nicaragua (extended until June 30, 2024), Somalia (extended until September 17, 2024), South Sudan (extended until November 3, 2023), Sudan (extended until October 19, 2023), Syria (extended until March 31, 2024), Ukraine (valid through October 19, 2023), Venezuela (extended until March 10, 2024) , and Yemen (extended until September 3, 2024).

How long is one entitled to the protections of TPS status? 

The Department of Homeland Security (DHS) will periodically review the situation in the home country and based on its analysis of the ability to return safely, DHS will determine whether to extend or terminate TPS protections. If DHS decides to extend a TPS designation, it can be done for 6, 12, or 18 months at a time. TPS holders may apply for an extension of their designation if DHS extends TPS protections due to the conditions in their home country.

Who is eligible to apply for TPS?

          To apply for TPS, a foreign national must be a foreign national of the designated country and be able to demonstrate that they have been living in the U.S. since a certain effective date. They must also show that they have been continuously physically present in the U.S. since that date specified and have not left for any extended period of time. Additionally, they must be able to prove that they are not a threat to the U.S. national security or public safety, such as a conviction of a felony or two or more misdemeanors.

Could TPS be a path to permanent residence?

TPS is not a basis by which one may adjust status to that of a lawful permanent resident.  TPS beneficiaries may be eligible to adjust their status to lawful permanent residence through other immigration pathways, such as family-based petitions or employment-based petitions. However, this does not guarantee that all TPS beneficiaries will be able to obtain lawful permanent residence. Thus, it is very important for the TPS beneficiaries to keep checking the expiration date of their TPS status and any renewal deadlines. If they fail to renew their TPS status before it expires, they may be subject to removal proceedings or other immigration consequences.

Working with a lawyer who is knowledgeable about the TPS process and requirements is very important to ensure your, and your family’s lives keep safe. At Tanner Law Offices, LLC, you will find us compassionate and knowledgeable about the TPS process. Please contact our office at 717-836-0471 to schedule a consultation to discuss your case.