DHS Announces Registration Process for Temporary Protected Status for Afghanistan
Registration for Temporary Protected Status (TPS) officially opens May 20, 2022. On March 16, 2022, Secretary of Homeland Security Alejandro N. Mayorkas announced the designation of Afghanistan for TPS. The TPS designation is designed to protect Afghan nationals who have been living in the United States from returning to unsafe conditions. TPS will also provide additional protections to trusted partners and vulnerable Afghans who have supported the U.S military, diplomatic, and humanitarian missions in Afghanistan over the last 20 years.
Individuals with TPS are not removable from the United States and are eligible for employment authorization. They also may be granted travel authorization. It does not prevent individuals from applying for non-immigrant status, filing for adjustment of status, or applying for other immigration benefits and protections.
To be eligible for TPS, an individual must be able to demonstrate their continuous residence in the United States since March 16, 2022. Under the current estimations, USCIS has determined that 72,500 individuals currently in the United States may qualify for TPS under the designation of Afghanistan. This includes those Afghan nationals who arrived in the United States as part of the evacuation effort and were paroled into the United States on a case-by-case basis. Any individual who arrived in the United States after March 15, 2022, will not be eligible for TPS.
The registration period opens May 20, 2022, and closes November 20, 2022. During this initial registration period, Afghan nationals applying for TPS must submit Form I-821, Application for Temporary Protected Status and can file this form online. Applicants may also request an Employment Authorization Document (EAD) by submitting a completed Form I-765, Application for Employment Authorization, along with their Form I-821. Evidence of the following must be submitted with Form I-821:
- Date of Entry (Copy of passport, I-94 Arrival/Departure Record)
- Identity and Nationality Evidence
- Continuous Residence Evidence
For a full list of permissible evidence, please visit uscis.gov. There is a filing fee for the petition which is determined based on the applicant’s age and if the applicant wants an EAD. Fee waivers are available to those who qualify. Once USCIS receives the petition, the applicant will be called for biometrics. They will then be called to report to the ASC with the proper evidence and receipt/appointment notices. USCIS will then adjudicate the application and may request more evidence. The application will either be approved or denied. Denied applications may be appealed. To maintain TPS and its benefits, the individual must re-register during each re-registration periods.
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