Temporary Protected Status (TPS)

Temporary Protected Status (TPS)

Temporary Protected Status (TPS) is a temporary immigration status provided to nationals of certain countries experiencing problems that place their nationals at risk if deported there or that would compromise the foreign government’s ability to absorb the return of its nationals. TPS has been a lifeline to hundreds of thousands of individuals already in the United States when problems in a home country suddenly make their departure or deportation untenable.

Congress created Temporary Protected Status (TPS) in the Immigration Act of 1990. It is a temporary immigration status provided to nationals of specifically designated countries that are confronting an ongoing armed conflict, environmental disaster, or extraordinary and temporary conditions. It provides a work permit and stay of deportation to foreign nationals from those countries who are in the United States at the time the U.S. government makes the designation.

Reasons of Countries TPA Title

A country may be designated for TPS for one or more of the following reasons:

  • An ongoing armed conflict (such as a civil war) that poses a serious threat to the personal safety to returning nationals;
  • An environmental disaster, such as an earthquake, hurricane, or epidemic, resulting in a substantial, but temporary disruption of living conditions and the foreign state is temporarily unable to adequately handle the return of its nationals; or
  • Extraordinary and temporary conditions in the foreign state that prevent its nationals from returning to the state in safety (unless the U.S. government finds that permitting these nationals to remain temporarily in the United States is contrary to the U.S. national interest).

Countries Eligible for TPS

As of early 2018, the following nations are designated for TPS:

  • El Salvador
  • Haiti
  • Honduras
  • Nepal
  • Nicaragua
  • Somalia
  • Sudan
  • South Sudan
  • Syria
  • Yemen.

Eligibility Requirements

To be eligible for TPS, you must:

  • Be a national of a country designated for TPS, or a person without nationality who last habitually resided in the designated country;
  • File during the open initial registration or re-registration period, or you 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; and
  • Have been continuously residing (CR) in the United States since the date specified for your country. The law allows an exception to the continuous physical presence and continuous residence requirements for brief, casual and innocent departures from the United States. 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.

You may NOT be eligible for TPS or to maintain your existing TPS if you:

  • 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 grounds;
  • Are subject to any of the mandatory bars to asylum. These include, but are not limited to, participating in the persecution of another individual or engaging in or inciting terrorist activity;
  • 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; or
  • If granted TPS, you fail to re-register for TPS, as required, without good cause.


Pursuant to INA § 244(a)(1)(A), persons under TPS are shielded from deportation. However, the mere grant of TPS does not make the beneficiary admissible if he or she was inadmissible. Furthermore, the grant of TPS does not allow for pending removal proceedings to be terminated.

Persons on TPS are granted employment authorization for the shorter time period for 1 year, or for the duration of the initial TPS grant if it is shorter than 1 year. This employment authorization may be renewed with any extensions of TPS.
Persons on TPS may travel abroad after being granted advance parole and subsequently be readmitted under TPS status rather than as a parolee provided that they return in a timely manner. However, since the grant of TPS does not waive the 3 or 10-year bars of inadmissibility, a TPS beneficiary who had accrued the requisite amount of unlawful presence should consult with an experienced immigration attorney before seeking to depart under a grant of advance parole. However, do note that pursuant to Matter of Arrabally & Yerrabelly, 25 I&N Dec. 771 (BIA 2012), attempting to reenter to the United States after being granted advanced parole will not trigger the 3 or 10 year bar of inadmissibility if the returnee has a pending adjustment of status application.

How We Can Help Obtain or Renew Your Temporary Protected Status

While TPS is a powerful benefit, it is important to be aware of its limitations. TPS is, as its name indicates, a temporary benefit. If an alien’s country loses its TPS designation, he or she will lose TPS benefits as soon as the registration period runs out. For this reason, persons on TPS should, in addition to ensuring that they maintain TPS, consult with an experienced immigration attorney to determine eligibility for adjustment of status. Provided that a TPS beneficiary is eligible for adjustment, TPS functions as a bridge to obtaining a permanent immigration status. You can always start this process by sending us your resume either by e-mail to info@hsrai.com or by fax to +1 415-693-9135.

Since TPS does not waive inadmissibility caused by accrual of unlawful presence, TPS beneficiaries who may be subject to the 3 or 10 year bars of inadmissibility should consult with an experienced immigration attorney before departing the country. Although the bars will not prevent reentry pursuant to timely return after leaving on a grant of advance parole if the TPS beneficiary has a pending adjustment of status application, those bars of inadmissibility will need to be addressed in order to adjust status.

Persons from countries designated for TPS should consult with an experienced immigration attorney prior to applying for TPS, both for an evaluation of eligibility for TPS, and in order to determine whether based on specific circumstances, whether the alien may be eligible for a less temporary immigration benefit. Since the application process for TPS requires numerous forms and knowledge of the different registration periods for TPS designated countries, persons who are seeking TPS should consult with an experienced immigration attorney for assistance in the TPS application process.

Our Temporary Protected Status attorneys experience benefits you in several key areas. We:

  • Clarify options and potential scenarios surrounding your case.
  • Assist you in collecting the proper information and documentation.
  • Correctly classify the application and ensure requirements are met.
  • Prepare and submit all USCIS and Department of Labor (DOL) forms and documentation.
  • Communicate with the DOL and USCIS throughout the process.
  • Monitor the entire Temporary Protected Status application process.

Temporary Protected Status Attorney Experience & Responsiveness that Makes a Difference. Our Temporary Protected Status Attorney Pledge:

  • 100% commitment to processing your Temporary Protected Status quickly & successfully.
  • Strong Temporary Protected Status attorney experience & knowledge.
  • Open Temporary Protected Status Attorney communication & responsiveness is among our top priority.
  • Highest level of Temporary Protected Status Attorney service at an affordable FLAT rate.
  • Some Temporary Protected Status applications can be submitted in as little as 1-2 weeks.
  • To discuss your case call: (415)-693-9131 or Mail Us.
Something very important you may want to know

Frequently Asked Questions

  1. 1
    What happens to a TPS beneficiary when a TPS designation ends?

    TPS beneficiaries return to the immigration status that the person held prior to 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.

  2. 2
    How are “Deferred Enforced Departure” and “Extended Voluntary Departure” related to TPS?

    Deferred Enforced Departure (DED) is very similar to TPS but derives from the President’s foreign policy authority rather than from a specific law.

    • There are no explicit criteria for making DED decisions or for determining who would be eligible for DED once a designation is made.
    • Just like TPS holders, DED beneficiaries receive a work permit and stay of deportation; however, they are not permitted to travel abroad.
    • As of August 2017, Liberia is the only country with a DED designation, which is due to expire in March 2018.

    Extended Voluntary Departure (EVD) was the predecessor to TPS prior to the Immigration Act of 1990. It was a discretionary authority used by the Attorney General (at a time when the Immigration and Naturalization Service was housed in DOJ) to give nationals of certain countries experiencing turbulent country conditions temporary permission to remain in the United States. Congress eliminated EVD when TPS was created.

  3. 3
    If my application for TPS is denied, can I appeal?

    Yes, in most cases, as long as your case is not denied on criminal or national security grounds. You can file a Motion to Reconsider using Form I-290B, A Notice of Appeal or Motion. However, it is highly recommended that you consult with an experienced immigration attorney, who can advise you whether it is in your best interest to pursue an appeal and help you prepare a convincing case for one.

  4. 4
    Will I ever have to reapply or re-register for TPS?

    Most likely, yes. If USCIS redesignates your nation for TPS and you want to remain in the United States, in order to maintain your status, you may have to re-register for TPS (and pay associated fees). You will need to use the same forms and procedures as you used to apply initially. However, sometimes USCIS will extend TPS beneficiaries’ employment authorization for a period of time so that it occurs automatically, without requiring applicants to reregister or pay additional fees.


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