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SERVING IMMIGRANTS AND THEIR FAMILIES SINCE 1973

Nepal Designated for Temporary Protected Status

TPS Fact Sheet: Temporary Protected Status for Nepal

On June 24, 2015, in response to the 7.8 magnitude earthquake that struck Nepal on April 25, the U.S. Secretary of Homeland Security designated Nepal for Temporary Protected Status (TPS).[1]  Nationals of Nepal who file a TPS application prior to December 21, 2015 are eligible for immigration benefits as explained below.

WHAT is Temporary Protected Status?

Temporary Protected Status (TPS) is a type of humanitarian immigration status that is available to nationals from designated countries because conditions in their home country prevent them from returning safely.  The Secretary of Homeland Security decides whether a country is designated for TPS.  The Secretary may designate a country for TPS due to the following temporary conditions in the country: ongoing armed conflict (such as civil war) environmental disaster (such as earthquake or hurricane), an epidemic, or other extraordinary conditions.

WHO Should Apply?

To be eligible for Nepal TPS, you must meet the following two criteria:

  • National (citizen) of Nepal, or a person without any nationality who last habitually resided in Nepal
  • Present and residing in the United States continuously since June 24, 2015 (you may also qualify if you have only taken a brief trip outside the United States)

Note:  Someone can apply for TPS and receive work authorization even if they are currently in the United States illegally.  However, certain individuals may be denied TPS if they have been convicted of specific crimes or other violations of the immigration laws of the United States.[2]

What are the BENEFITS?

During the designated period, individuals who are TPS beneficiaries or who are found preliminarily eligible for TPS upon initial review of their cases:

  • Cannot be deported/removed from the United States
  • Can work legally after obtaining an employment authorization document
  • May be granted travel authorization
  • Once granted TPS, an individual also cannot be detained by DHS on the basis of his or her immigration status in the United States

TPS is a temporary benefit that does not lead to lawful permanent resident status or give any other immigration status.  However, registration for TPS does not prevent you from applying for any other immigration benefit or protection for which you may be eligible.

HOW to Apply

Prior to the December 21, 2015 deadline, you need to file an application with USCIS[3] including the following:

  • Application Forms – Form I-821 (Application for TPS) and Form I-765 (Application for Employment Authorization)
  • Evidence – Supporting documents proving your identity, when you entered the United States, and proof that you have continuously resided here during the relevant times.
  • Filing Fee – If you are low-income, you can apply for a fee waiver that makes the application free.

If you need assistance completing your application or putting together the evidence necessary to support your application, please contact our office to discuss your case further.

WHEN to Act

Immediately.  The deadline to apply for Nepal TPS is December 21, 2015.  Those who fail to submit a complete application by this deadline will be ineligible for TPS, they will not be given permission to work in the United States, and they will have no way of reentering the United States if they need to travel outside the country.

What if I miss the DEADLINE?

Under certain circumstances, an individual may be able to apply for TPS after the December 21, 2015 deadline.  If you missed the deadline, talk to an immigration attorney as soon as possible to see if you qualify to file a late application.  If you qualify to file your initial TPS application late, you must still independently meet all the TPS eligibility requirements.

Want More Information?

For more information or to see if you can benefit from TPS status and obtain permission to work in the United States, please contact the Law Office of Robert D. Ahlgren & Associates at (312) 782-1804.

Notes:

[1] The Department of Homeland Security press release is available online at www.uscis.gov/news/dhs-announces-temporary-protected-status-designation-nepal.

[2] The official eligibility requirements are available from USCIS and are available online at http://www.uscis.gov/tps, and the specific details about Nepal TPS are available at http://www.uscis.gov/humanitarian/temporary-protected-status-deferred-enforced-departure/temporary-protected-status-designated-country-nepal.

[3] The details and procedures for applying for TPS were published in the Federal Register Federal Register Vol. 80, No. 121 (Wednesday, June 24, 2015), available online at www.gpo.gov/fdsys/pkg/FR-2015-06-24/html/2015-15576.htm.