U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services has opened the Temporary Protected Status reregistration period for Syrian nationals.

Key dates:

  • Syrian nationals who wish to maintain their status through March 31, 2021 must reregister between today and Nov. 22, 2019.
  • Those who reregister and apply for an employment authorization document (EAD) during the reregistration period will be issued a new EAD with an expiration date of March 31, 2021. To avoid EAD lapses during processing, USCIS has automatically extended EADs that would expire Sept. 30, 2019 for 180 days, through March 28, 2020. This automatic extension also covers EADs with an expiration date of March 31, 2018 for those who applied for a new EAD during the last reregistration period and have not yet received it.
  • In order to be eligible for the extension, individuals must have continuously resided in the U.S. since August 1, 2016, and have been continuously physically present since October 1, 2016, among other requirements.

Background: On Aug. 1, Acting Department of Homeland Security secretary Kevin McAleenan extended TPS for Syria for 18 months through March 31, 2021. Notably, however, DHS did not “re-designate” Syria for TPS, as it had previously. This means initial applicants cannot apply for the status, and must seek other forms of immigration relief to stay in the U.S.

The Trump administration has moved to end TPS designations for a number of other countries, including El Salvador, Haiti, Honduras, Nepal, Nicaragua and Sudan. Those terminations are currently on hold after a court ordered a temporary halt to the termination of TPS for four of the countries last fall, and DHS agreed to comply with the order for all six countries while it appeals the court’s decision. The litigation does not involve TPS for Syrian nationals.

BAL Analysis: Syrian TPS holders should reregister as soon as possible and no later than Nov. 22. Employers should be aware of the automatic extension of EADs for Syrian nationals.

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

Copyright © 2019 Berry Appleman & Leiden LLP. All rights reserved. Reprinting or digital redistribution to the public is permitted only with the express written permission of Berry Appleman & Leiden LLP. For inquiries please contact copyright@bal.com.