TPS, or Temporary Protected Status, provides temporary status to certain immigrants who are in the United States and are temporarily prevented from safely returning to their country or whose country is temporarily unable to handle the return of it’s nationals. The Secretary of Homeland Security designates countries whose citizens are eligible to apply for TPS.
Since taking office, the Trump administration has de-designated a number of countries, including El Salvador, Honduras, Sudan, Haiti, Nicaragua, and Nepal. Many individuals from these countries have been living in the United States with TPS for decades and are now facing the possibility of deportation.
Last year, the ACLU filed a class action lawsuit challenging the Trump Administration’s decision to end TPS for Haiti, Sudan, Nicaragua, and El Salvador. As part of the law suit, the ACLU requested a preliminary injunction, to prevent the government from terminating TPS for individuals from Haiti, Sudan, Nicaragua, and El Salvador while the case was pending. In October 2018, a federal judge in California granted the injunction.
In an effort to comply with this injunction, on March 1, the Department of Homeland Security announced that it was automatically extending TPS for individuals from Sudan, Nicaragua, Haiti, and El Salvador. DHS further extended the validity of any TPS related documents, including work permits, until January 2, 2020. Individuals who hold these permits do not need to reapply or request a new permit.