Many Temporary Protected Status (TPS) work authorizations were set to expire in January 2021. That date has been pushed back for those from Sudan, Haiti, Nicaragua, El Salvador, Nepal, and Honduras because injunctions were issued in several cases currently before the courts. Those affected need to pay attention to the date changes and the results of the current court cases. They should consult an experienced immigration attorney to see if pathways exist to move off of TPS and on a path to permanent residence.
TPS became an issue under the current administration when it announced in 2018 that it would end that status for Sudan, Haiti, Nicaragua, El Salvador, Nepal, and Honduras. The stories behind individual countries’ recipients differ but the big picture doesn’t—residents of countries ravaged by natural or man-made disasters were granted temporary status in the U.S., and during that time had families, got jobs, paid taxes, became parts of their communities, and did the things that the country values. Some have been in the U.S. for more than 20 years, so returning to their countries of origin—some of which have exchanged one unstable circumstance for another—would be profoundly disruptive.
The plan ran into legal trouble months laterwhen a court issued a temporary injunction because the ruling appeared to run afoul of the Administrative Procedures Act (APA) by failing to give proper notification and work through the ramification and consequences of the decision. It’s a problem that tripped up the current administration more than once, The case has continued to work its way through the courts, and while President-Elect Biden has signaled his willingness to drop the appeals and confirm TPS standing for those affected, those currently protected by TPS should take affirmative steps to maintain their status or see if they are eligible for permanent residence.
… and as we have said about DACA, TPS is a bandage, not a cure. Both are short-term solutions that live and die with resident of The White House. People need real immigration reform and a path to citizenship, and we need to work to help make that happen.
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