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Temporary Protected Status for Venezuela Extended for 18 Months

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DHS Extends and Redesignates Venezuela for Temporary Protected Status

The Department of Homeland Security (DHS) announced the extension and redesignation of Temporary Protected Status (TPS) for Venezuela for 18 months on September 20, 2023. The new extension applies only to Venezuelan nationals residing in the U.S. before July 31, 2023.

What is Temporary Protected Status (TPS)?

TPS is granted to migrants from designated countries considered unsafe to return to and allows them to live and work in the U.S. for a temporary but extendable period. TPS is usually granted in 18-month periods and can be extended indefinitely. However, TPS doesn’t provide a pathway to residence. Venezuela is one of seven countries that the U.S. has given TPS status. The other six are:
  • El Salvador
  • Haiti
  • Honduras
  • Nepal
  • Nicaragua
  • Sudan

What to Know About the Recent TPS Extension for Venezuela

Eligible individuals who have not yet filed for TPS status may submit an Application for Temporary Protected Status (Form I-821) during the initial registration period. DHS will provide further information about timelines, eligibility criteria, and procedures in an upcoming Federal Register notice. Applicants may also apply for TPS-related Employee Authorization Documents (EAD) and travel authorization at that time.
Pending applications under the previous TPS designation for Venezuela will continue to be processed. There is no need for those with open applications to resubmit forms. Individuals with pending EADs may be eligible for an automatic extension of work authorization while the renewal application is pending. The USCIS has created a calculator for individuals to track their extensions.

What the TPS Extension for Venezuela Means for Employers

The TPS extension for Venezuela is good news for employers, particularly those in fields with labor shortages. Leaders across the nation have advocated for the extension and allowing eligible Venezuelans to begin contributing to the community and economy.
According to DHS, there are currently ~242,700 TPS beneficiaries under Venezuela’s existing TPS designation. An additional ~472,000 nationals of Venezuela may be eligible under the redesignation of Venezuela. In other words, about a half-million potential employees will soon be entering the labor market.

I-9 Compliance for Employers with TPS Employees

It’s critical that employers know how to properly complete the Form I-9 process for new and existing TPS employees. According to I-9 Central, when an employee presents an EAD whose original “Card Expires” date has passed, employers should determine if it is a TPS EAD that has been automatically extended. Employers must look at the “Category” section on the expired EAD: “A12” or “C19” indicate TPS. Employers must accept the EAD as still valid if it has been automatically extended by DHS. Employers must re-verify on or before the extended expiration date and follow the instructions in the I-9 Handbook, M-274. It is important to note that the extended expiration dates may be further extended, so it is important to check the USCIS website for any updates.

GoffWilson Immigration

From questions about an individual’s TPS status to how the extension of TPS status for Venezuela affects a business, GoffWilson has the answers. GoffWilson solely practices immigration law and is a valuable partner to individuals and businesses navigating the complex and ever-evolving immigration laws. Whether you’re interested in learning about TPS status or how it affects I-9 compliance, GoffWilson can help. Contact us today for assistance.
Immigration isn’t just what we do, it’s our passion.
Filed under:Form I-9 Compliance, Immigration Law