Virginia, US

Mar 11 2020

Somalia TPS Re-Registration Period Opens

United States

At a glance

  • Temporary Protected Status (TPS) for Somalia is extended for 18 months, from March 18, 2020, through September 17, 2021.
  • Current Somali TPS beneficiaries have until May 11, 2020 to re-register to maintain status through September 17, 2021.
  • Current Somali TPS employment authorization documents with an expiration date of March 17, 2020 will automatically be extended through September 13, 2020.

The issue

The Department of Homeland Security (DHS) has extended Temporary Protected Status (TPS) for Somalia for 18 months, from March 18, 2020 through September 17, 2021. Starting today, current Somali TPS beneficiaries will have 60 days, or until May 11, 2020, to request an 18-month extension of status and work authorization while they seek another immigration status or prepare to depart the country, according to a notice published in today’s Federal Register.

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 of Somalia.
  • When to re-register: To obtain an 18-month extension of status, current Somali TPS beneficiaries must submit Form I-821 with U.S. Citizenship & Immigration Services (USCIS) by May 11, 2020. Though applicants need not pay the filing fee, a Biometrics Services fee will be required from those 14 years of age and older, unless eligible for a fee waiver. 
  • 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 recognizes that not all re-registrants will be able to file and receive new EADs by March 17, 2020. Accordingly, DHS is providing an automatic 180-day extension, through September 13, 2020, for EADs bearing an expiration date of March 17, 2020 and an A-12 or C-19 category.
  • Beneficiaries with pending TPS applications: Beneficiaries who have a Form I-821 or a Form I-765 pending as of March 11, 2020, need not re-file the pending form. Approved applications will be granted validity dates through September 17, 2021.

I-9 eligibility verification

For Form I-9 employment eligibility verification purposes, through September 13, 2020, employers may accept a TPS-related EAD with an expiration date of March 17, 2020, along with a copy of the March 11, 2020 Federal Register notice or a USCIS Form I-797C receipt notice indicating that the TPS-related EAD is automatically extended through September 13, 2020.

This alert is for informational purposes only. If you have any questions, please contact the immigration professional with whom you work at Fragomen.