DHS Releases Instructions for Haitians Applying for TPS Renewal

Haitian Temporary Protected Status has been renewed for only six months and is expected to be terminated in 2018.

58,000 Haitians currently have TPS. Approximately 2,000 live in New York City and Long Island.

Last week Homeland Security Secretary John Kelly announced that Temporary Protected Status for Haitians is only being extended for six months. He said that the extension was to allow Haitians time to obtain travel documents and prepare to return to Haiti. Advocates believe that Kelly was signaling that TPS for Haiti will end in January 2018. The following information on TPS renewal procedures comes from the United States Citizenship and Immigration Service (USCIS):

Current beneficiaries of Haiti’s TPS designation seeking to extend their TPS must re-register by July 24, 2017. TPS beneficiaries who re-register may request a new Employment Authorization Document (EAD). Those who re-register and request a new EAD during the 60-day re-registration period may receive an automatic extension of their expiring EAD for up to 180 days from the date their current EAD expires. Current EADs will not be automatically extended without a new EAD request. If a beneficiary’s EAD request is approved, they will receive a new EAD with an expiration date of Jan. 22, 2018. TPS beneficiaries are strongly encouraged to re-register and file their EAD applications as early as possible to avoid lapses in documentation of employment authorization.

During this six-month extension, beneficiaries are encouraged to prepare for their return to Haiti in the event Haiti’s designation is not extended again, including requesting updated travel documents from the government of Haiti. At least 60 days before Jan. 22, 2018, Secretary Kelly will re-evaluate the designation for Haiti and will determine whether another extension, a redesignation, or a termination is warranted, in full compliance with the Immigration and Nationality Act. The designation of TPS was intended by Congress to be temporary, and the Secretary will fully re-evaluate the country conditions to determine whether Haiti’s TPS designation should continue.

For more information on renewing TPS, please go to this DHS site.

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Patrick Young blogs daily for Long Island Wins. He is the Downstate Advocacy Director of the New York Immigration Coalition and Special Professor of Immigration Law at Hofstra School of Law. He served as the Director of Legal Services and Program at Central American Refugee Center (CARECEN) for three decades before retiring in 2019. Pat is also a student of immigration history and the author of The Immigrants' Civil War.

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