Temporary Protected Status (TPS)
TPS is an Immigration status granted to eligible nationals of a designated country who are already in the United States and are temporarily unable to safely return to their home country because of ongoing armed conflict, environmental disaster, or other extraordinary and temporary conditions or where the designated country is unable to handle the return of its nationals adequately. Eligible individuals without nationality who last resided in the designated country may also be granted TPS.
During a designated period, eligible individuals:
- Are not removable from the United States.
- Cannot be detained by Department of Homeland Security.
- Can obtain an employment authorization document (EAD).
- May apply for travel authorization.
TPS and Permanent Resident Status.
The granting of TPS does not lead to permanent resident status. When a country’s TPS designation terminates, beneficiaries return to the same immigration status they maintained before TPS was granted unless that status has expired, been terminated or have been changed. Where an Alien held no lawful Immigration status prior to being granted TPS and did not obtain any other status during the TPS period,the Alien will revert to unlawful status upon the termination of the TPS designation.Such alien is required to depart from the United States.
Aliens who have been convicted of any felony or two or more misdeamnors committed in the United States are ineligible for TPS.
Having been granted TPS does not, of itself, provide an alien with a legal basis for seeking permanent resident status. A TPS beneficiary who would like to become a permanent resident must qualify for this status based on a family relationship, employment-based classicfication, or other generally available basis and meet all eligibility requirements in accordance with the U.S Immigration laws.
Registration for TPS does not prevent an Alien from applying for nonimmigrant status, filing for adjustment of status based on an Immigrant petition, or applying for any other Immigration benefit or protection were eligible. .
An Alien is eligible for TPS if he or she meets all of the following requirements:
- Is a national of a country designated for TPS, or a person without nationality who last habitually resided in the designated country;
- File for TPS during the open registration or re-registration period, or meet the requirements for late initial registration;
- Have been continuously physically present and resident in the United States since the most recent designation date of the Alien’s country;
- Have not been convicted of any felony or two or more misdemeanors in the United States;
- Is not subject to any of the bars to asylum;
- Is not subject to one of the criminal or security related grounds of inadmissibility for which a waiver is not available; and
- Have met all additional requirements for TPS registration or re-registration as specified for the Alien’s country.
Once an Alien is granted TPS, he or she must re-register during each re-registration period to maintain TPS benefits. Such Alien is also required to maintain continuous physical presence in the United States.
Late Re-Registration for TPS.
An Alien may file for late re-registration application if the Alien have good cause for filing after the end of the re-registration period of the Alien’s country. Late re-registration may however lead to gaps in an Alien work Authorization.
Late Initial Filing for TPS.
If the registration period for the most recent designation of an Alien’s country has closed, an Alien can still apply for TPS for the first time.
To be eligible, one of the following conditions must have existed during the initial registration period for the most recent designation for the Alien’s country:
- The Alien was a nonimmigrant, was granted voluntary departure status, or any relief from removal;
- The Alien had an application for change of status, adjustment of status, asylum, voluntary departure, or any relief from removal which was pending or subject to further review or appeal;
- The Alien was a parolee or had a pending request for re-parole;
- The Alien was a spouse of an individual eligible for TPS, or such Alien is still the spouse of that person who is currently eligible for TPS; or;
- The Alien was and remains a child of an individual eligible for TPS.
The Alien must file an Alien’s TPS application no later than 60 days after one of these conditions ends (except for a continuing spousal or child relationship to an individual eligible for TPS).