The United States has built a clause into its immigration law known as Temporary Protected Status (TPS) that allows people from certain countries to remain in the U.S. because their native countries have been deemed unsafe due to environmental conditions, violent conditions, or any other extreme scenario. This allows them to live, work, and travel to and from the U.S. during the length of time in which a Temporary Protected Status has been put in place. Currently, 13 countries have been granted TPS by the Secretary of Homeland Security including El Salvador, Sierra Leone, Haiti, Honduras, and Syria. The United States just extended the TPS status for those from El Salvador until March 9, 2018, effective this upcoming September.
In order to be considered eligible for protected status, one must prove that they are from a country that is one of the 13 that Homeland Security identifies as a TPS country. You can provide evidence of your nationality in the form of a passport, birth certificate or photo identification and fingerprint issued by your national country. It is important to know that if you would like to apply for TPS, you have to register within the certain time frame the USCIS provides. You also must not have a criminal record, have been present in the United States continuously since the date identified for your native country. If you cannot provide the government with primary evidence, you will be required to submit an affidavit that entails why you have not been able to obtain the documents such as a passport or birth certificate. You may also be able to use secondary evidence such as your parents’ birth certificates that detail that they are of the nationality of the country you are trying to seek protection from.
John Sesini is an experienced immigration attorney with offices in Green Bay and Milwaukee Wisconsin. If you have any questions regarding these matters, please contact the Sesini Law Group, S.C. and obtain your initial consultation.