Everything you need to know about Temporary Protected Status (TPS)


What is Temporary Protected Status and who can qualify for the program? In this video, attorney Jacob Sapochnick provides information about the Temporary Protected Status program including which countries have received a Temporary Protected Status (TPS) designation, how to register, and much more.

Did you know? Individuals who qualify for Temporary Protected Status (TPS) are allowed to lawfully live and work in the United States without fear of deportation, during the period of their country’s TPS designation (typically this is anywhere between 6 to 18 months depending on the country). To qualify for work authorization, individuals must file Form I-765 Application for Employment Authorization to request an Employment Authorization Document (EAD) from the US Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS). With the EAD, applicants can lawfully work in the United States. Additionally, TPS eligible nationals may qualify for travel authorization.

Want to know more? Just keep on watching.


What is Temporary Protected Status

Temporary Protected Status (TPS) is a special program made possible by the United States Congress that allows foreign nationals of certain countries that are considered unsafe, the right to live and work in the United States temporarily. TPS does not provide a pathway to citizenship, and instead is utilized by individuals from participating countries as a humanitarian solution because they cannot safely return to their home countries.

Under the program, the Secretary of Homeland Security is authorized to designate a specific foreign country for TPS if they determine that conditions exist in that country that prevent its nationals from safely returning to their countries of origin.

The Secretary may designate a country for TPS if any of the following temporary conditions exist in the foreign country:

  • Ongoing armed conflict (such as civil war)
  • An environmental disaster (such as earthquake or hurricane), or an epidemic
  • Other extraordinary and temporary conditions

In order to participate in the TPS program, 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 for your country, 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 announced by the Department of Homeland Security; and
  • Have been continuously residing (CR) in the United States since the date specified for your country.
  • Pass the necessary security and background checks.

What countries are currently designated for TPS?

As of June 2022, the following countries have been designated by the Secretary of Homeland Security for Temporary Protected Status.

What are the benefits of TPS?

The main benefit of Temporary Protected Status (TPS) is being allowed to live and work in the United States without fear of deportation during the period of your country’s TPS designation. This could be anywhere from 6 to 18 months depending on your country (and can be extended based on the Secretary of Homeland Security’s discretion).  TPS eligible applicants can apply for employment authorization by filing Form I-765 Application for Employment Authorization to receive an Employment Authorization Document (EAD). The EAD is important because it allows applicants to prove they can lawfully work in the USA and enables applicants to obtain a Social Security Number. Furthermore, TPS applicants can also apply for travel authorization by filing Form I-131 Application for Travel Document.

Finally, once granted, an individual under TPS status cannot be detained by DHS on the basis of his or her immigration status in the United States.

How can I register for TPS?

To register or re-register for TPS benefits, you must file Form I-821, Application for Temporary Protected Status. All applicants eligible to file for TPS under one of the current designations may file Form I-821 online or by mail, pay the required fees, and submit all the supporting documentation showing how you qualify for TPS. After filing your application, you will receive a Notice of Action receipt notice that indicates your application has been received and is being processed.

When filing an initial TPS application or re-registering for TPS, you are also eligible to apply for an employment authorization document (EAD) by submitting a completed Form I-765, Request for Employment Authorization, at the time of filing Form I-821. You may also file your Form I-765 request separately at a later date. Filing Form I-821 with Form I-765 may help you receive your EAD more promptly if you are eligible. You may also file Form I-765 online if filing concurrently with Form I-821 online.

Who does not qualify for TPS?

You may NOT be eligible for TPS or to maintain existing TPS benefits if any of the following are true:

  • 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.

If you believe you qualify for Temporary Protected Status, and you are a national of a country designated for TPS, or a person without nationality who last habitually resided in the designated country, we invite you to contact our office to schedule a consultation. We hope this information was helpful. If you need more information help please contact us to schedule a consultation.

Where can I find more information about TPS?

To find more information about TPS please check out our helpful links below.

Questions? If you would like to schedule a consultation, please text 619-483-4549 or call 619-819-9204.

Helpful Links


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