Mark A Ivener, A Law Corporation

USCIS Extends TPS Designation and EADs for Hondurans, Nicaraguans

The Department of Homeland Security (DHS) has extended the designation of Honduras and Nicaragua for temporary protected status (TPS) for 18 months from the current expiration date of January 5, 2012, through July 5, 2013. The 60-day re-registration period for both countries began on November 4, 2011, and ends on January 5, 2012.

DHS determined that an extension is warranted because the conditions in Honduras and Nicaragua that prompted the TPS designations continue to be met. There continues to be a substantial, but temporary, disruption of living conditions in both countries resulting from Hurricane Mitch, and they remain temporarily unable to handle adequately the return of their nationals.

The notices also set forth procedures for nationals of the two countries (or those having no nationality who last habitually resided in them) with TPS to re-register and to apply for an extension of their Employment Authorization Documents (EADs) (Forms I–766) with U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS). Re-registration is limited to persons who previously registered for TPS under the designations and whose applications have been granted or remain pending. Certain nationals of Honduras and Nicaragua (or those having no nationality who last habitually resided in either of those countries) who have not previously applied for TPS may be eligible to apply under the late initial registration provisions.

USCIS will issue new EADs with a July 5, 2013, expiration date to eligible TPS beneficiaries who timely re-register and apply for EADs under this extension. Given the time frames involved with processing TPS re-registration applications, DHS said it recognizes that all re-registrants may not receive new EADs until after their current EADs expire on January 5, 2012. Accordingly, the notices automatically extend the validity of EADs issued under the TPS designations for six months, through July 5, 2012, and explains how TPS beneficiaries and their employers may determine which EADs are automatically extended and their impact on Form I–9 and E-Verify work authorization verification.

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Mark A. Ivener, A Law Corporation, a nationally recognized law firm, has successfully assisted hundreds of clients in immigration matters.