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Temporary Protected Status (TPS)

By April 27, 2021No Comments

by Shriom Arza

During the Trump Administration, Former-President Trump ended Temporary Protected Status (TPS) for many immigrants living in the U.S. Ever since the Biden Administration has taken power, many have wondered what that would mean for TPS.

What is TPS?

TPS is a designation given to individuals from countries specified by the Secretary of Homeland Security that allows them to live and work in the United States under a lawful immigration status. This designation is given to countries due to conditions in the country that temporarily prevent the country’s nationals from returning safely, or in certain circumstances, where the country is unable to adequately handle the return of its nationals. Conditions that can cause for a country’s nationals to be designated for TPS according to the USCIS, include “[o]ngoing armed conflict (such as civil war), [a]n environmental disaster (such as earthquake or hurricane), an epidemic, or [o]ther extraordinary and temporary conditions.”

A TPS designation can be made for 6, 12, or 18 months at a time. At least 60 days prior to the expiration of TPS, the Secretary decides whether to extend or terminate the  designation based on the conditions in the foreign country. Decisions to begin, extend, or terminate a TPS designations are published in the Federal Register ( If an extension or termination decision is not published at least 60 days in advance of expiration, the designation is automatically extended for six months. The law does not define how much time a country can remain a TPS designee

What Countries are eligible for TPS as of April 1st, 2021:

Myanmar (Burma) (Valid through September 12, 2022)

El Salvador (Auto-extended until October 4, 2021)

Haiti (Auto-extended until October 4, 2021)

Honduras (Auto-extended until October 4, 2021)

Nepal (Auto-extended until October 4, 2021)

Nicaragua (Auto-extended until October 4, 2021)

Somalia (Extended until September 17, 2021)

South Sudan (Extended until May 2, 2022)

Sudan (Auto-extended until October 4, 2021)

Syria (Extended until September 30, 2022)

Venezuela (Valid through September 9, 2022)

Yemen (Extended until September 3, 2021)

Am I eligible for TPS?

  • To be eligible for TPS you must be from a country designated for TPS, or a person without nationality who last resided in the designated country.
  • File during the open initial registration or re-registration period, or meet the requirements for late initial filing during any extension of your country’s TPS designation.
  • Have been continuously physically present (CPP) in the United States since the effective date of the most recent designation date of your country.
  • Have been continuously residing (CR) in the United States since the date specified for your country.
  • When you apply or re-register for TPS, you must inform USCIS of all absences from the United States since the CPP and CR dates. USCIS will determine whether the exception applies in your case.

Why am I not eligible for TPS?

You will not be eligible if:

  • Have been convicted of any felony or two or more misdemeanors committed in the United States.
  • Are found inadmissible as an immigrant under applicable grounds in INA section 212(a), including non-waivable criminal and security-related ground.
  • Fail to meet the continuous physical presence and continuous residence in the United States requirements.
  • Fail to meet initial or late initial TPS registration requirements.
  • If granted TPS, you fail to re-register for TPS, as required, without good cause.
  • Are subject to any of the mandatory bars to asylum:
    • participating in the persecution of another individual.
    • engaging in or inciting terrorist activity .

Does TPS have a path to citizenship?

TPS does not provide a path to lawful permanent residence (a green card or citizenship). However, a TPS recipient who is eligible for permanent residence can apply for that status.

What happens to a TPS beneficiary when a TPS designation ends for their country?

When a TPS designation ends for a beneficiary, they return to the immigration status that the person held before receiving TPS, unless that status has expired or the person has successfully acquired a new immigration status. TPS beneficiaries who entered the United States without inspection and who are not eligible for other immigration benefits, for example, would return to being undocumented at the end of a TPS designation and become subject to removal.

TPS and Venezuela

Secretary of Homeland Security Alejandro N. Mayorkas has designated Venezuela for TPS for 18 months, until September 2022. According to Homeland Security, “[t]his designation is due to extraordinary and temporary conditions in Venezuela that prevent nationals from returning safely, including a complex humanitarian crisis marked by widespread hunger and malnutrition, a growing influence and presence of non-state armed groups, repression, and a crumbling infrastructure.” There are some things to keep in mind however, including that only individuals who demonstrate “continuous residence” in the United States as of March 8, 2021 are eligible for TPS under Venezuela’s designation. Individuals should also not believe smugglers or others claiming the border is now open. Due to the pandemic, travel and admission restrictions at the border remain in place.

If you have any questions or need any help with applying for a Temporary Protected Status do not hesitate to contact the Law Firm of Gian-Franco Melendez