Haitian Temporary Protected Status (TPS) Application Now Being Accepted

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On August 3, 2021 the Department of Homeland Security began accepting application from Haitians applying for Temporary Protected Status (TPS). This application process is open both to those who already had TPS and whose permits are expiring and to tens of thousands of new applicants.

This designation allows eligible Haitianwho have continuously resided in the United States since July 29, 2021, and who have been continuously physically present in the United States since August 3, 2021 to apply for TPS. Those who had TPS and whose status has been continued by the court’s order should also file a new application. The Federal Register announcement can be found here.

The registration period for eligible individuals to submit TPS applications begins August 3, 2021, and will remain in effect through February 3, 2023. Work permits issued to Haitians will be good until at least February 3, 2023.

Here are answers to common question supplied by the DHS:

What is Temporary Protected Status (TPS)?

  • TPS is a temporary immigration status granted to eligible nationals of a foreign state designated for TPS under the INA, or to eligible individuals without nationality who last habitually resided in the designated foreign state.
  • During the TPS designation period, TPS beneficiaries are eligible to remain in the United States, may not be removed, and are authorized to obtain EADs so long as they continue to meet the requirements of TPS.
  • TPS beneficiaries may also apply for and be granted travel authorization as a matter of discretion.
  • The granting of TPS does not result in or lead to lawful permanent resident status.
  • To qualify for TPS, beneficiaries must meet the eligibility standards at INA section 244(c)(1)-(2), 8 U.S.C. 1254a(c)(1)-(2).
  • When the Secretary terminates a foreign state’s TPS designation, beneficiaries return to one of the following:

○ The same immigration status or category that they maintained before TPS, if any (unless that status or category has since expired or terminated); or

○ Any other lawfully obtained immigration status or category they received while registered for TPS, as long as it is still valid beyond the date TPS terminates.

Is Haiti’s previous designation for TPS still in effect?

On January 21, 2010, former Secretary of Homeland Security Janet Napolitano designated Haiti for TPS under INA section 244(b)(1)(C) based on extraordinary and temporary conditions within the country, specifically the effects of the 7.0-magnitude earthquake that occurred on January 12, 2010.[3In 2011, Haiti’s designation was extended, and Haiti was also redesignated for TPS at the same time, expanding the number of Haitians in the United States eligible for TPS.[4Haiti’s designation was subsequently extended [5several additional times before the termination was announced on January 18, 2018.[6]

The termination of Haiti’s TPS designation is being challenged in several separate lawsuits, and court injunctions currently require DHS to continue TPS temporarily for Haiti pending further court order.[7There are approximately 55,000 beneficiaries under the TPS designation for Haiti that the courts have continued and whose TPS-related documentation is automatically extended at least through October 4, 2021, in compliance with the court orders, unless a beneficiary’s TPS is withdrawn for individual ineligibility.[8Beneficiaries under the TPS designation for Haiti that continues under the Ramos and Saget preliminary injunctions who maintain individual eligibility for TPS will maintain their status as long as the injunctions in these lawsuits remain in effect and in accordance with the compliance notice that DHS published on December 9, 2020, unless superseded by future court orders or compliance notices.[9The continuation of the 2011 designation of Haiti required by the preliminary injunctions is not a statutory “extension” of the designation determined by the Secretary as described in section 244(b)(3)(C) of the INA. Individuals with existing TPS who are covered by those injunctions should newly apply for TPS under this designation. This will help ensure that eligible individuals maintain TPS under this new designation of Haiti even if the injunctions cease to be in effect. An estimated additional 100,000 nationals of Haiti (and individuals having no nationality who last habitually resided in Haiti), regardless of their country of birth, will become eligible for TPS under this new designation, for an estimated total of 155,000 individuals who could potentially apply or re-apply for TPS under the new TPS designation….

Eligibility and Employment Authorization for TPS

Required Application Forms and Application Fees To Register for TPS

ALL APPLICANTS, including individuals whose TPS under the previous designation of Haiti has been continued under preliminary injunctions issued by certain courts and 85 FR 79208 (Dec. 9, 2020), should follow these instructions: You must submit an Application for Temporary Protected Status (Form I-821) as a new applicant by selecting “1.a This is my initial (first time) application for Temporary Protected Status (TPS). I do not currently have TPS,” along with the required $50 fee for Form I-821 or request for fee waiver. If your TPS is currently continuing under the court orders in Ramos and Saget, checking this 1.a. box as an initial applicant under this new designation of Haiti does not affect the continuation of your TPS while those orders remain. However, if those orders are no longer in effect applying for TPS under this Federal Register Notice will help ensure that you have TPS until the end of the designation as long as you remain eligible. USCIS understands that you do currently have TPS if you are covered by the court orders, and checking Box 1.a. will not be deemed a misrepresentation on your part.

You may request a fee waiver by submitting a Request for a Fee Waiver (Form I-912). You must also pay the biometrics services fee if you are age 14 or older, unless USCIS grants a fee waiver. Please see additional information under the “Biometric Services Fee” section of this Notice. You are not required to submit an I-765 or have an EAD, but see below for more information if you want to work in the United States.

How TPS Beneficiaries Can Obtain an Employment Authorization Document (EAD)

Everyone must provide their employer with documentation showing that they have the legal right to work in the United States. TPS beneficiaries are eligible to apply for and obtain an EAD, which proves their legal right to work. TPS applicants who want to obtain an EAD valid through February 3, 2023 must file an Application for Employment Authorization (Form I-765) and pay the Form I-765 fee (or request a fee waiver by submitting a Request for a Fee Waiver (Form I-912)). TPS applicants may file this form along with their TPS application, or at a later date, provided their TPS application is still pending or has been approved.

For more information on the application forms and fees for TPS, please visit the USCIS TPS web page at uscis.gov/tps. Fees for the Form I-821, the Form I-765, and biometric services are also described in 8 CFR 103.7(b)(1)(i).

Refiling a TPS Registration Application After Receiving a Denial of a Fee Waiver Request

If you receive a denial of a fee waiver request, you must refile your Form I-821 for TPS along with the required fees during the registration period, which extends until February 3, 2023, in order to continue seeking initial TPS or to newly register to avoid losing protection in the event that the court injunctions are lifted. You may also file for your Employment Authorization Document on Form I-765 with payment of the fee along with your TPS application or at any later date you decide you want to request an EAD during the registration period.

Filing Information

USCIS offers the option to applicants for TPS under Haiti’s designation to file Form I-821 and related requests for EADs online or by mail. When filing an initial TPS application, applicants can also request an EAD by submitting a completed Form I-765, Request for Employment Authorization, with their Form I-821.

Online filing: Form I-821 and I-765 are available for concurrent filing online.[68To file these forms online, you must first create a USCIS online account.[69]

Mail filing: Mail your application for TPS to the proper address in Table 1.

TABLE 1—MAILING ADDRESSES

Mail your completed Application for Temporary Protected Status (Form I-821) and Application for Employment Authorization (Form I-765), Form I-912 for a fee waiver (if applicable) and supporting documentation to the proper address in Table 1.Start Printed Page 41869

 Expand Table

Table 1—Mailing Addresses

If you . . . Mail to . . .
Are a beneficiary under the TPS designation for Haiti and you live in the following states: Florida, New York U.S. Postal Service (USPS), U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services, Attn: TPS Haiti, P.O. Box 660167, Dallas, TX 75266-0167.
FedEx, UPS, or DHL: U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services, Attn: TPS Haiti (Box 660167), 2501 S. State Highway, 121 Business Suite 400, Lewisville, TX 75067-8003.
Are a beneficiary under the TPS designation for Haiti and you live in any other state U.S. Postal Service (USPS), U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services, Attn: TPS Haiti, P.O. Box 24047, Phoenix, AZ 85074-4047.
FedEx, UPS, or DHL: U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services, Attn: TPS Haiti (Box 24047), 1820 E. Skyharbor Circle S, Suite 100, Phoenix, AZ 85034.

If you were granted TPS by an immigration judge (IJ) or the Board of Immigration Appeals (BIA) and you wish to request an EAD, please mail your Form I-765 application to the appropriate mailing address in Table 1. When you are requesting an EAD based on an IJ/BIA grant of TPS, please include a copy of the IJ or BIA order granting you TPS with your application. This will help us verify your grant of TPS and process your application.

Supporting Documents

The filing instructions on the Form I-821 list all the documents needed to establish eligibility for TPS. You may also find information on the acceptable documentation and other requirements for applying or registering for TPS on the USCIS website at uscis.gov/tps under “Haiti.”

Biometric Services Fee for TPS

Biometrics (such as fingerprints) are required for all applicants 14 years of age and older. Those applicants must generally submit a biometric services fee. As previously stated, if you demonstrate an inability to pay the biometric services fee you may be able to have the fee waived. A fee waiver may be requested by submitting a Request for Fee Waiver (Form I-912). For more information on the application forms and fees for TPS, please visit the USCIS TPS web page at uscis.gov/tps. If necessary, you may be required to visit an Application Support Center to have your biometrics captured. For additional information on the USCIS biometric screening process, please see the USCIS Customer Profile Management Service Privacy Impact Assessment, available at dhs.gov/privacy.

General Employment-Related Information for TPS Applicants and Their Employers

How can I obtain information on the status of my TPS application and EAD request?

To get case status information about your TPS application, as well as the status of your TPS-based EAD request, you can check Case Status Online at uscis.gov, or visit the USCIS Contact Center at uscis.gov/contactcenter. If your Form I-765 has been pending for more than 90 days, and you still need assistance, you may ask a question about your case online at egov.uscis.gov/e-request/Intro.do or call the USCIS Contact Center at 800-375-5283 (TTY 800-767-1833).

When hired, what documentation may I show to my employer as evidence of identity and employment authorization when completing Form I-9?

You can find the Lists of Acceptable Documents on the third page of Form I-9, Employment Eligibility Verification, as well as the Acceptable Documents web page at uscis.gov/i-9-central/acceptable-documents. Employers must complete Form I-9 to verify the identity and employment authorization of all new employees. Within three days of hire, employees must present acceptable documents to their employers as evidence of identity and employment authorization to satisfy Form I-9 requirements.

You may present any document from List A (which provides evidence of both identity and employment authorization) or one document from List B (which provides evidence of your identity) together with one document from List C (which provides evidence of employment authorization), or you may present an acceptable receipt as described in the Form I-9 Instructions. The TPS EADs that DHS automatically extended in the December 9, 2020 compliance notice will remain valid until at least October 4, 2021.[70Employers may not reject a document based on the fact that it has been automatically extended, or due to a future expiration date. An EAD is an acceptable document under List A. Individuals whose existing TPS-related documentation continues through October 4, 2021, in accordance with the court orders in Ramos and Saget and the DHS Federal Register notice at 85 FR 79208 (Dec. 9, 2020), may present documentation as described in that notice to their employers for purposes of demonstrating employment eligibility through October 4, 2021. Additional information about Form I-9 is available on the I-9 Central web page at uscis.gov/I-9Central.

If I have an EAD based on another immigration status, can I obtain a new TPS-based EAD?

Yes, if you are eligible for TPS, you can obtain a new EAD, regardless of whether you have an EAD or work authorization based on another immigration status. If you want to obtain a new TPS-based EAD valid through February 3, 2023, then you must file Form I-765, Application for Employment Authorization, and pay the associated fee (unless USCIS grants your fee waiver request).

Can my employer require that I provide any other documentation such as evidence of my status or proof of my Haitian citizenship or a Form I-797C showing that I registered for TPS for Form I-9 completion?

No. When completing Form I-9, employers must accept any documentation you choose to present from the Form I-9 Lists of Acceptable Documents that reasonably appears to be genuine and that relates to you, or an acceptable List A, List B, or List C Start Printed Page 41870receipt. Employers need not reverify List B identity documents. Employers may not request proof of Haitian citizenship or proof of registration for TPS when completing Form I-9 for new hires or reverifying the employment authorization of current employees. Refer to the “Note to Employees” section of this Federal Register notice for important information about your rights if your employer rejects lawful documentation, requires additional documentation, or otherwise discriminates against you based on your citizenship or immigration status, or your national origin. Employers can refer to the compliance notice that DHS published on December 9, 2020 for information on how to complete the Form I-9 with TPS EADs that DHS extended through October 4, 2021.[71]

Note to All Employers

Employers are reminded that the laws requiring proper employment eligibility verification and prohibiting unfair immigration-related employment practices remain in full force. This Federal Register notice does not supersede or in any way limit applicable employment verification rules and policy guidance, including those rules setting forth reverification requirements. For general questions about the employment eligibility verification process, employers may call USCIS at 888-464-4218 (TTY 877-875-6028) or email USCIS at I-9Central@uscis.dhs.gov. USCIS accepts calls and emails in English and many other languages. For questions about avoiding discrimination during the employment eligibility verification process (Form I-9 and E-Verify), employers may call the U.S. Department of Justice, Civil Rights Division, Immigrant and Employee Rights Section (IER) Employer Hotline at 800-255-8155 (TTY 800-237-2515). IER offers language interpretation in numerous languages. Employers may also email IER at IER@usdoj.gov.

Note to Employees

For general questions about the employment eligibility verification process, employees may call USCIS at 888-897-7781 (TTY 877-875-6028) or email USCIS at I-9Central@uscis.dhs.gov. USCIS accepts calls in English, Spanish and many other languages. Employees or job applicants may also call the IER Worker Hotline at 800-255-7688 (TTY 800-237-2515) for information regarding employment discrimination based on citizenship, immigration status, or national origin, including discrimination related to Form I-9 and E-Verify. The IER Worker Hotline provides language interpretation in numerous languages.

To comply with the law, employers must accept any document or combination of documents from the Lists of Acceptable Documents if the documentation reasonably appears to be genuine and to relate to the employee, or an acceptable List A, List B, or List C receipt as described in the Form I-9 Instructions. Employers may not require extra or additional documentation beyond what is required for Form I-9 completion. Further, employers participating in E-Verify who receive an E-Verify case result of “Tentative Nonconfirmation” (TNC) must promptly inform employees of the TNC and give such employees an opportunity to contest the TNC. A TNC case result means that the information entered into E-Verify from Form I-9 differs from records available to DHS.

Employers may not terminate, suspend, delay training, withhold or lower pay, or take any adverse action against an employee because of a TNC while the case is still pending with E-Verify. A Final Nonconfirmation (FNC) case result is received when E-Verify cannot confirm an employee’s employment eligibility. An employer may terminate employment based on a case result of FNC. Work-authorized employees who receive an FNC may call USCIS for assistance at 888-897-7781 (TTY 877-875-6028). For more information about E-Verify-related discrimination or to report an employer for discrimination in the E-Verify process based on citizenship, immigration status, or national origin, contact IER’s Worker Hotline at 800-255-7688 (TTY 800-237-2515). Additional information about proper nondiscriminatory Form I-9 and E-Verify procedures is available on the IER website at justice.gov/ier and the USCIS and E-Verify websites at uscis.gov/i-9-central and e-verify.gov.


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