Syria TPS Re-Registration Period Opens
The Department of Homeland Security has extended Temporary Protected Status (TPS) for Syria for 18 months, through March 31, 2021. Current Syrian TPS beneficiaries will have until November 22, 2019 to request an 18-month extension of status and work authorization, according to a notice published in today’s Federal Register.
In August, DHS determined that conditions in Syria warrant continued Temporary Protected Status (TPS) for the country’s citizens in the United States. Acting Secretary Kevin K. McAleenan announced that the ongoing armed conflict and other extraordinary conditions that prompted Syria’s initial TPS designation continue to pose a serious threat to the personal safety of its nationals should they be required to return to Syria.
Re-registering for TPS
- Who may re-register: Re-registration is limited to those who previously registered for and were granted TPS under the designation for Syria.
- When to register: Current Syrian TPS beneficiaries must submit Form I-821 to USCIS by November 22, 2019.
- Extending employment authorization: Beneficiaries who wish to extend their employment authorization for 18 months must also submit a timely Form I-765 application for an employment authorization document (EAD) and the applicable fees (or a fee waiver application).
- Automatic EAD extensions: DHS is providing an automatic 180-day extension, through March 28, 2020, for EADs bearing an expiration date of an expiration date of September 30, 2019, or March 31, 2018 (for those who applied for a new EAD during the last re-registration period but have not yet received the new EAD) and an A-12 or C-19 category.
To be eligible for an extension of TPS under Syria’s current designation, individuals must have continuously resided in the United States since August 1, 2016, and have been continuously physically present in the United States since October 1, 2016, among other requirements.
I-9 Eligibility Verification
For Form I-9 employment eligibility verification purposes, through March 28, 2020, employers may accept a TPS-related EAD with an expiration date of September 30, 2019, or March 31, 2018 (for those who applied for a new EAD during the last re-registration period but have not yet received the new EAD), along with a copy of the September 23, 2019 Federal Register notice or a USCIS Form I-797C receipt notice indicating that the TPS-related EAD is automatically extended through March 28, 2020.
The extension of TPS for Syria means that beneficiaries who submit a timely re-registration and receive an approval may continue to work and remain in the United States through March 31, 2021. Prior to the conclusion of the 18-month extension, the DHS Secretary will review conditions to determine whether its TPS designation should be extended again or terminated. DHS is expected to make the next decision to extend or terminate the TPS designation for Syria on or before January 30, 2021.