Temporary Protected Status: What It Is and How It Works

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The Department of Homeland Security (DHS) has extended Temporary Protected Status (TPS) by 18 months for eligible nationals of El Salvador, effective from Sept. 10, 2016 through March 9, 2018. El Salvadoran nationals– and those without nationality who last habitually resided in El Salvador– can re-register to extend their TPS between July 8, 2016 and Sept. 6, 2016.

The extension, announced in a July 8 U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) release, also allows current TPS El Salvador beneficiaries who want to extend their TPS status to apply for a new Employment Authorization Document (EAD). TPS recipients who re-register during the 60-day period and request a new EAD will receive one with an expiration date of March 9, 2018. Because some re-registrants might not receive their new EADs until after current work permits expire, however, USCIS has also automatically extended current TPS El Salvador EADs with a Sept. 9, 2016 expiration date for six months. These existing EADs are now valid through March 9, 2017.

USCIS encourages re-registration as soon as possible. In order to re-register, current beneficiaries need to:

Submit Form I-821, Application for Temporary Protected Status (no application is required).

Submit Form I-765, Application for Employment Authorization– even if no EAD is wanted. The Form I-765 application– or fee waiver request– is only required for those who want an EAD.

Submit the biometric services fee (or a fee waiver request) for those who are 14 years old or older.

USCIS provides additional TPS information at uscis.gov. Information includes guidance around eligibility, the application process and filing locations. Further details have also been published through the Federal Register notice and contains further details about this TPS extension for El Salvador.

Beneficiaries who submit applications without the required filing fees or properly documented fee-waiver request will be rejected. Beneficiaries who are unable to pay application fees must file Form I-912, Request for Fee Waiver or submit a written request. Fee-waiver requests of either variety must be accompanied by supporting documentation.

USCIS previously extended TPS to El Salvador nationals in February 2015.

TPS, a designation bestowed on immigrants coming from countries where conditions make it unsafe to return to the native country, is granted by the Secretary of Homeland Security.

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