By notice published in the Federal Register on Jan. 17, 2017, the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) announced that it will extend the Temporary Protected Status (TPS) for nationals of Somalia (and for individuals without nationality who last habitually resided in Somalia) for an 18-month period from March 18, 2017, through Sept. 17, 2018. Those individuals who wish to extend their TPS status must re-register during a 60 day registration period: Jan. 17, 2017, to March 20, 2017.
Somalia became a TPS designated country on Sept. 16, 1991, and TPS has been renewed based on the country’s continuing armed conflict and conditions (both extraordinary and temporary) that prevent Somali nationals from returning to Somalia in safety. Individuals who are granted TPS benefits cannot be removed from the United States on grounds that the U.S. government has determined that conditions in their home country are unsafe, such as environmental disasters and ongoing armed conflict, as well as other temporary conditions that are deemed extraordinary. Individuals holding TPS may make a separate application to obtain an employment authorization document (EAD) to work in the United States and they may obtain travel authorization to travel outside the United States. The granting of TPS does not, however, result in or lead to permanent resident status. Individuals with a criminal background or who pose a threat to national security are not eligible for TPS. Other countries that have had TPS designation include: El Salvador, Guinea, Honduras, Liberia, Nepal, Nicaragua, Sierra Leone, South Sudan, Syria, and Yemen. For more information, please visit: USCIS TPS webpage.
*Not admitted to the practice of law.