Skip to main content

In Case You Missed It! --- Temporary Protected Status Announced for Liberia, Guinea, and Sierra Leone

In the excitement of President Obama’s announcement on Executive Action back in November and the new DAPA Program, many missed the part where the Department of Homeland Security also designated Liberia, Guinea, and Sierra Leone for Temporary Protected Status (TPS).  As many of us know, TPS is already designated for numerous other countries, but these three are now added to the list as a result of the Ebola outbreak.
In order to qualify for TPS, one must be a native and citizen of one the named countries, must have been present in the United States on or before November 20, 2014, and must not have more than two misdemeanor convictions.  The applicant also cannot have an aggravated felony, but may still be eligible even with an order of removal.  It is important to note the date by which the individual must have been in the U.S., so that some do not try to enter the U.S. after November 20, 2014 thinking that they can apply for TPS.
TPS is a designation reserved for those countries that the Secretary of Homeland Security determines is in great need, whether it be as a result of civil war, natural disaster, or in this case, an epidemic.  To clarify for those who have never been eligible to apply for TPS before, it is not the same as lawful permanent residence.  It is only a temporary status valid for 18 months in this case, but it can be renewed indefinitely as long as the Department of Homeland Security extends TPS for the designated countries.  Further, any convictions that occur after TPS is granted can either terminate a person’s status, or at least make them ineligible when trying to renew their status.  
Another important point about TPS is that although it does not lead to a green card, one can possibly file to adjust their status even if they entered the United States without inspection.  Specifically, often times individuals are not eligible to adjust their status in the United States if they entered without inspection (unless they are otherwise grandfathered under 245i), but recent case law has changed this for those applicants.  Therefore, one with TPS status can now apply for a travel document, leave the United States and return after being properly inspected by an immigration officer.  First, the departure itself would not be considered a departure in light of recent case law such that they individual would not incur a ten year bar.  Second, the subsequent valid reentry would then allow the individual to file for a green card in the U.S. if otherwise eligible.
Finally, TPS for the three countries has an initial registration period of November 20, 2014 through May 20, 2015, and the designation of TPS is for 18 months.  It remains to be seen whether TPS for these countries will be extended beyond the initial period.
If you have any questions regarding this new TPS designation, please contact Danielle M. Claffey at 404.949.8151 or by email at dclaffey@immigration.net.

Comments

Popular posts from this blog

If You Are An Immigrant (even a US Citizen), Here Are 9 Things You Should Know

Are you a Naturalized U.S. Citizen, Lawful Permanent Resident, Visa Holder, or an Undocumented Immigrant? We recommend you take the following steps to protect yourself in our current version of America.
The last couple of weeks have reminded immigrants, even naturalized U.S. citizens, that they were not born in the United States. Our office has received countless phone calls, emails, and social media messages from people worrying about what their family’s future in the United States holds.
Most people want to know what they can do now to protect themselves from what promises to be a wave of anti-immigration activity by the federal government. Trump's Executive Order on Interior Enforcement has some provisions that should make most Americans shiver.  We recommend the following actions for each of the following groups:
Naturalized U.S. citizens. In particular if you have a foreign accent, and you are traveling within 100 miles of any US Border (including the oceans), we strongly rec…

Why is USCIS Taking So Long to Renew DACA Work Permits?

If the calls to our office are any indicator, there are thousands of DACA recipients whose work permit applications were filed at least three months prior to expiration, who are still waiting for their renewed work permits.  Without renewed permits, these individuals lose the right to work legally, the right to drive, and may once again accrue unlawful presence.

The DHS published a notice in October 2014 advising DACA recipients that they could file their request for extension up to 150 days (5 months) prior to expiration.  As with all things government, very few of the DACA recipients, who tend not to frequent government websites, knew about the memo and many did not file so far before expiration perhaps thinking that extending a work permit was a like extending a drivers license, its is done in a few minutes.  As an experienced immigration lawyer will tell you, the USCIS does nothing quickly, and certainly does not worry that a person may lose their job or their driver's licens…

LOS DERECHOS DE LOS EXTRANJEROS EN LOS ESTADOS UNIDOS

Todas las personas en los Estados Unidos, incluidos los extranjeros y aun los con ordenes de deportacion, tienen ciertos derechos básicos que deben ser respetados por los agentes de Inmigración y Aduanas (ICE). Estos derechos se derivan tanto de la Constitución de los Estados Unidos. y las leyes de Estados Unidos. Como extranjero, usted tiene los siguientes derechos:

SU DERECHO A DENEGAR LA ENTRADA A SU CASA
Usted tiene el derecho de negar la entrada a un agente de ICE a su casa sin una orden válida. Esta orden debe ser firmado por un juez. Usted puede negarse a abrir la puerta, o se puede cerrar la puerta después de descubrir que el agente no tiene una orden válida. Los agentes del ICE generalmente no vienen con una orden judicial. Estos agentes suelen venir a la casa de alguien con una orden final de deportación, muy temprano en la mañana. Si alguien está golpeando en su puerta a las 6:00 am, no le es requerido abrir la puerta. Mirar fuera de primera. Si es un agente del gobierno, ust…