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Temporary Protected Status for Venezuelans

Temporary Protected Status for Venezuelans

Great news for natives of Venezuela! On March 8, the Secretary of Homeland Security, Alejandro N. Mayorkas is designating Venezuela for Temporary Protected Status (TPS) for 18 months until September 2022.

What Is TPS?

TPS is a designation by the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) that allows people who immigrated to the United States from specific countries to temporarily legally reside in the United States, receive authorization to work in the United States, and may even be granted authorization to travel outside of the country and come back.

Although those benefits are temporary, they are extremely useful and will make the lives of eligible individuals significantly easier.

TPS is designated due to extraordinary and temporary conditions in countries. For Venezuela in particular, its TPS designation is due to what DHS has described as “a complex humanitarian crisis marked by widespread hunger and malnutrition, a growing influence and presence of non-state armed groups, repression, and a crumbling infrastructure.”

Who is Eligible for TPS?

The first step in assessing eligibility for TPS is whether you are a native of a country that the Department of Homeland Security has designated for TPS. These countries are:


  1. El Salvador
  2. Haiti
  3. Honduras
  4. Nepal
  5. Nicaragua
  6. Somalia
  7. Sudan
  8. South Sudan
  9. Syria
  10. Yemen

And as of this most recent designation!

  1. Venezuela

Additional requirements are that you filed during the open initial registration or re-registration period, or you meet the requirements for a late initial filing during a extension period for your country’s TPS designation. You must also have been continuously physically present in the United States since the effective date of the most recent designation date of your country (March 8, 2021 for Venezuela). Finally, you must have continuous physical presence in the United States since the date designated on your country’s page (March 9, 2021 for Venezuela).

Unfortunately, even if you meet all of the above requirements, there are also things that can disqualify you from eligibility. All of the below things can disqualify you from getting TPS in the first place or from renewing it:

  • Being convicted of any felony or of two or more misdemeanors in the United States;
  • You are subject to mandatory bars to asylum (e.g. inciting terrorist activity or participating in the persecution of another individual);
  • You are inadmissible as an immigrant due to non-waivable criminal and security-related grounds; or
  • Either your initial or re-registration are not timely.

When Can You File for TPS?

Fortunately, this question has a straightforward answer for Venezuelan applicants – there is a 180-day registration period that runs from March 9, 2021 to September 5, 2021 during which you can apply. We recommend applying as early as possible during this registration period.

How Do I Apply?

To apply, you will need to fully fill and file a few forms:

  1. I-821, Application for Temporary Protected Status;
  2. I-765, Application for Employment Authorization; and
  3. I-601, Application for Waiver of Grounds of Inadmissibility (only needed if you are inadmissible)

Additionally, you will need evidence of when the date you entered the country and of your continuous residence in the United States.

Evidence You Can Provide

Date of Entry Evidence

  • Copy of your passport;
  • I-94, Arrival/Departure Record; or
  • Copies of documents from below

Continuous Residence

  • Employment records;
  • Rent receipts, utility bills, receipts or letters from companies;
  • School records for you or your children in the US;
  • Hospital or medical records;
  • Attestation by church, union, or other organizational officials who can confirm your presence.

Finally, there is the matter of cost. Costs vary by age, whether it is an initial or renewal application, and whether you are also requesting employment authorization. The breakdown of fees is below:

The Applicant Is

Applicant's Age

Total Cost

Submitting their first TPS application and requesting an EAD

Younger than 14

$50

14-65 years old

$545

66 and older

$135

Submitting their first TPS application and are not requesting an EAD

Younger than 14

$50

14 and older

$135

Re-registering for TPS and requesting an EAD

Younger than 14

$410

14 and older

$495

Re-registering for TPS and not requesting an EAD

Younger than 14

$0

14 and older

$85

If you cannot afford these fees, you can file for a fee waiver using the Form I-912, Application for Fee Waiver.

Conclusion

The process to apply for Temporary Protected Status can be a bit daunting. We recommend consulting with an experienced immigration attorney who can make sure your initial and renewal applications are properly filled out so that you do not encounter any problems in the future.

If you need further guidance or have specific questions about your immigration case, you can schedule an initial consultation with us today, don't hesitate to contact us at (949) 478-4963.

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