Temporary Protected Status Updates – Ukraine and Sudan

March 8, 2022

Effective March 1, 2022, the United States government extended Temporary Protected Status to Ukrainians present in the United States and the relaxation of entry requirements for Ukrainian nationals.

On March 3, 2022, Secretary of Homeland Security Alejandro Mayorkas announced the designation of Ukraine for Temporary Protected Status for 18 months. The status will apply to Ukrainian nationals present in the United States as of March 1, 2022, and will authorize their continued presence in the United States and their ability to request employment authorization from U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services. A Federal Register announcement detailing the process, procedures, and filing instructions is expected to be issued imminently

In his statement, the Secretary stated that “a country may be designated for TPS when conditions in the country fall into one or more of the three statutory bases for designation: ongoing armed conflict, environmental disasters, or extraordinary and temporary conditions. This designation is based on both ongoing armed conflict and extraordinary and temporary conditions in Ukraine that prevent Ukrainian nationals, and those of no nationality who last habitually resided in Ukraine, from returning to Ukraine safely. These conditions result from the full-scale Russian military invasion into Ukraine, which marks the largest conventional military action in Europe since World War II. This invasion has caused a humanitarian crisis with significant numbers of individuals fleeing and damage to civilian infrastructure that has left many without electricity or water or access to food, basic supplies, shelter, and emergency medical services.”

What is Temporary Protected Status (TPS)?

Temporary Protected Status may be designated to nationals of a foreign country who find themselves temporarily in the United States without the ability to return to their home country, due to a variety of reasons, including, but not limited to:

  • Ongoing armed conflict (such as civil war)
  • An environmental disaster (i.e. earthquake, flooding, hurricane, or an epidemic)
  • Other extraordinary and temporary conditions

During the period that individuals are granted TPS, they are –

  • Not removable from the United States
  • May apply for and obtain employment authorization documents (EAD)
  • May be granted travel authorization (advance parole)

TPS does not create a path to U.S. permanent residence or bestow any nonimmigrant visa status on the applicant. Further, it does not prevent the applicant from:

  • Applying for nonimmigrant visa status
  • Filing for adjustment of status based on an immigrant petition
  • Applying for any other immigration benefit or protection for which the individual may be eligible

Currently, the following countries are designated for TPS –

Burma (Myanmar), El Salvador, Haiti, Honduras, Nepal, Nicaragua, Somalia, Sudan, South Sudan, Syria, Venezuela, and Yemen.

The Federal Register will also soon publish an update regarding the extension of TPS status for Sudan and South Sudan. The Department of Homeland Security has also redesignated and extended TPS for South Sudan until November 3, 2023, and registration for this benefit must be submitted by South Sudanese beneficiaries by May 3, 2022.  


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