Temporary Protected Status

Courts Pauses Termination of Temporary Protected Status

The U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California  granted a preliminary injunction to prevent the termination of Temporary Protected Status (TPS) for Sudan, Nicaragua, Haiti, and El Salvador. According to USCIS:

As required by the order, the TPS designations of Sudan, Nicaragua, Haiti, and El Salvador will remain in effect so long as the court’s Oct. 3, 2018, preliminary injunction remains in effect... 

TPS beneficiaries will maintain their status, but they must continue to meet all the individual requirements for TPS eligibility found in INA section 244(c) and 8 CFR 244, as well as in the instructions for Form I-821, Application for Temporary Protected Status. 

The Trump administration efforts to limit immigration includes announcements to end Temporary Protected Status (TPS) for El Salvador, Haiti, Honduras, Nepal, Nicaragua and Sudan. Below are the dates TPS will end for each country.

Sudan November 2, 2018*
Nicaragua January 5, 2019*
Nepal June 24, 2019
Haiti July 22, 2019
El Salvador September 9, 2019
Honduras January 5, 2020

* TPS remains in effect due to preliminary injunction

What Is TPS?

Temporary Protected Status, or TPS, provides a mechanism for the Secretary of the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) to authorize temporary immigration status for people already in the United States when it is determined that they cannot return safely to their country.

TPS can be designated for countries experiencing armed conflict, natural disasters or other extraordinary conditions. In those situations, it is often either unsafe for citizens to return or their governments cannot absorb their return.  TPS is authorized for a fixed period of time and subject to renewal or termination at the end of that period of time, at the discretion of the DHS secretary.

Currently, ten countries are designated for TPS, including El Salvador, Haiti, Honduras, Nepal, Nicaragua, Somalia, Sudan, South Sudan, Syria and Yemen.  Some countries received TPS designation recently (such as Yemen in 2015) while others have had TPS designation for many years (such as Honduras, which was designated in 1999 and had been renewed until the announcment on May 4, 2018).

Nearly 200,000 Salvadorans live in the United States with TPS protection, the largest group.

When TPS Is Terminated

When TPS ends, those who had TPS status face an uncertain future in terms of their immigration status. Some people may be able to return to or reacquire the same immigration status they had before receiving TPS.  Others may be eligible to acquire a new immigration status.

Individuals who entered the United States without inspection and were not eligible for other immigration benefits before becoming a TPS beneficiary will return to being undocumented when TPS is terminated and may be subject to removal, unless they are eligible for another immigration status.

Immigration advocates argue against ending TPS, saying the effects of a crisis can continue long after a natural disaster or war. But the administration argues that the protected status should cover the the immediate aftermath of disasters and not extend for decades.

Deferred Enforced Departure - Liberia

Deferred Enforced Departure (DED) is not a specific immigration status, but individuals covered by DED are not subject to removal. DED is at the president's discretion. DED for Liberia will end March 31, 2019. Please contact your immigration attorney or schedule a meeting with the Immigration Response Team at immigration@umn.edu to discuss your situation, and whether you are eligible to seek an alternative immigration status in the United States. 

More information for Liberians in the U.S. under DED is available here

If You Have TPS

To see if you are eligible for other immigration benefits and to understand what you need to do to protect and apply for those benefits:

  • Seek legal advice from a competent immigration lawyer.
  • Consult the Immigration Response Team for assistance.
  • See our list of Resources by campus.

UMN students, staff and faculty on any system campus whose TPS status is designated to end are encouraged to contact us at immigration@umn.edu.