The Secretary of Homeland Security has redesignated Syria for Temporary Protected Status and extended the designation for 18 months, from Oct. 1, 2016 through March 31, 2018.

Key dates:

  • Current Syrian TPS holders must reregister during a 60-day period that runs from Aug. 1, 2016, through Sept. 30, 2016.
  • Individuals who reregister during this period may apply for a new employment authorization document and will receive one with an expiration date of March 31, 2018.
  • Existing employment authorization documents for Syrian TPS holders due to expire Sept. 30 will automatically be extended for an additional six months and are now valid through March 31, 2017.
  • New registrants who do not currently have TPS may apply as initial filers during a 180-day registration period that runs from Aug. 1, 2016, through Jan. 30, 2017.

Background: The Department of Homeland Security originally designated Syria for Temporary Protected Status on March 29, 2012 and has determined that the ongoing violence continues to prevent Syrian nationals in the U.S. from returning. The redesignation and extension allows current Syrian TPS holders to reregister during a 60-day period ending Sept. 30 and to extend their employment authorization document.

For first-time TPS applicants, Syrian nationals (and individuals without nationality who last habitually resided in Syria) may be eligible if they meet eligibility criteria, including having continuously resided in the U.S. since Aug. 1, 2016 and being physically present in the U.S. since Oct. 1, 2016. The filing period for initial filers is Aug. 1 through Jan. 30, 2017.

BAL Analysis: U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services encourages Syrian TPS holders to reregister as early as possible during the 60-day reregistration period. Application details are available at the USCIS Syrian TPS page.

This alert has been provided by the BAL U.S. Practice group. For additional information, please contact

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