Tourist visas have the opportunity to modify their status through legal channels and continue in the United States without any difficulties.
Temporary Protected Status (TPS)
What is TPS in the United States?
TPS is a legal recourse that you can apply for if the country you live in goes through a complex and dangerous situation, and as a consequence, your life is at risk. The U.S. is considered the land of opportunities due to its seemingly economic stability. TPS can be granted to an individual who is a national of a designated country, has filed for status during a specified registration period, and who has been continuously physically present in the U.S. since a designated date.
It is no wonder that the United States has been considered one of the best places to live in the world. However, it is not easy to move to the US and get legal permanent residence. The good news is that your chances do get better with the help of a good immigration law firm.
The circumstances by which the secretary of the United States Department of Homeland Security can grant Temporary Protection Status (TPS) to a country, are the following:
- When there is an armed conflict or civil war.
- Earthquakes, epidemics, hurricanes, or other natural disasters.
- Any other situation deemed temporary and extraordinary.
People coming from TPS countries, who meet the criteria, can take advantage of this immigration benefit.
TPS is a temporary benefit that does not lead to lawful permanent resident status or give any other immigration status. However, registration for TPS does not prevent you from:
- Applying for nonimmigrant status
- Filing for adjustment of status based on an immigrant petition
- Applying for any other immigration benefit or protection for which you may be eligible
- On March 16, 2022, Secretary of Homeland Security Alejandro N. Mayorkas announced a new designation of Afghanistan for TPS for 18 months. For additional information, please see the news release.
- On March 3, 2022, Secretary of Homeland Security Alejandro N. Mayorkas announced a new designation of Ukraine for TPS for 18 months. For additional information, please see the news release.
- On March 2, 2022, Secretary of Homeland Security Alejandro N. Mayorkas announced the extension and redesignation of South Sudan for TPS for 18 months from May 3, 2022, through November 3, 2023. For additional information, please see the TPS South Sudan page and the Federal Register notice.
- On March 2, 2022, Secretary of Homeland Security Alejandro N. Mayorkas announced a new designation of Sudan for TPS for 18 months. For additional information, please see the news release.
On August 3 2021, Secretary of Homeland Security Alejandro N. Mayorkas announced the extensions of the registration periods from 180 days to 18 months for initial (new) applicants under the Temporary Protected Status (TPS) designations for Venezuela, Syria, and Burma.
- The 18-month registration period for initial applications under the TPS designation for Venezuela now runs through Sept. 9, 2022.
- The 18-month registration period for initial applications under the redesignation of Syria for TPS now runs through Sept. 30, 2022.
- The 18-month registration period for initial applications under the TPS designation for Burma (Myanmar) now runs through Nov. 25, 2022.
There are several countries that have been given temporary protected status. These include people from Haiti, El Salvador, Honduras, Syria, Nepal, Yemen, Somalia, Sudan, Nicaragua, and South Sudan. Nowadays, many people live in the United States under TPS. Most of them currently live in Washington, New York, Los Angeles, Miami, Boston, or Houston.
Today, an estimated 320,000 people hold TPS in the United States from 10 designated countries;
more than 90 percent of these individuals are from El Salvador, Honduras, and Haiti. TPS is granted for set periods of time ranging from six to 18 months, and decisions as to whether to continue TPS for Honduras, Haiti, and El Salvador must occur by November 6, 2017, November 23, 2017, and January 8, 2018, respectively.
It is very important to keep in mind that TPS has an expiration time, just as the name says, it is temporary. TPS can be extended once the clerk evaluates the original conditions of the applicants. If the clerk decides that it is necessary to extend it, then you can do it for 6, 12, or up to 18 months more.
These constant revisions should be done at least 2 months before the expiration date. Recently, the secretary of Homeland Security extended TPS for some countries, but not others.
Many TPS holders wonder what would happen to them once the TPS designation ends for their country of origin. And it is not just the TPS holders, but countries from TPS protected countries who are planning to get one but are not sure about what would happen in the future.
In any case, it is important to know that there is a ruling from a California court judge, which forbids the current administration to eliminate TPS for immigrants from certain countries.
How can you know whether you are eligible for TPS? The truth of the matter is that there are several conditions that can work in your favor if you wish to apply for TPS:
- You must be a citizen of a TPS country or a stateless person who has lived in such a country.
- Having been physically present, during the initial record, although there are some exceptions for some applicants who would make a late application. You might be able to discuss it with one of our immigration attorneys in Houston.
- You must be continually present in the United States since the country was designated with TPS.
- There might be some exceptions for those who have not been able to stay continuously.
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.
Please be aware that some unauthorized practitioners may try to take advantage of you by claiming they can file TPS forms. These same individuals may ask that you pay them to file such forms. We don’t want you to become a victim of an immigration scam. If you need legal advice on immigration matters, make sure the person helping you is authorized to give legal advice. A list of accredited representatives and free or low-cost legal providers is available on the USCIS website. Visit the Avoid Scams page for information and resources.
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