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New Travel Policy for Beneficiaries of Temporary Protected Status (TPS)

Posted by Hugo R. Valverde, Managing Attorney, and Anna D. Colby, Attorney Social Media Marketing Manager | Apr 24, 2023 | 0 Comments

Photo by John McArthur on Unsplash

Over 400,000 people currently possess TPS (Temporary Protected Status) in the United States - a status that allows certain nationals of 16 specified countries to live and work legally in the United States for the time allotted by their nation's TPS designation. 

That number does not include nationals of the most recent designated countries, Afghanistan, Venezuela, and Burma (about another 400,000 people) because USCIS has not finished processing the applications of the nationals of those countries.

There has been a lot of confusion in the last few years regarding advanced parole travel for TPS holders and whether a re-entry to the United States with advanced parole results in an admission for TPS beneficiaries for adjustment of status (permanent resident) purposes. 

Beginning July 1, 2022, USCIS issued a new travel authorization document to TPS beneficiaries: Form I-512T, Authorization for Travel by a Noncitizen to the United States, and is no longer using Authorization for Parole of an Alien Into the United States (Form I512L). Presenting with a valid Form I-512T allows a U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) officer at a port-of-entry to admit the named bearer into TPS, being deemed ‘inspected and admitted' upon re-entry, instead of being ‘paroled' like the previous format. Form I-512T is a travel authorization document that is unique to TPS holders.

USCIS updated its guidance to clarify that “TPS beneficiaries who travel abroad temporarily, with the prior consent of the U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS), and who return in accordance with that prior authorization, may be inspected and admitted into TPS upon return, with certain exceptions. TPS beneficiaries whom DHS has inspected and admitted into TPS after such authorized travel are “inspected and admitted” for purposes of adjustment of status under INA 245(a) and INA 245(k). This is true even if the TPS beneficiary was present without admission or parole when initially granted TPS.” 

The policy is effective now and applies prospectively to applications adjudicated on or after July 1, 2022. This is wonderful news as it makes clear what the guidelines are for everyone who is a TPS beneficiary, and solidifies the ability for a TPS beneficiary to adjust status and apply for permanent residency if eligible (if an immigrant visa is immediately available), upon return to the U.S.

To clarify, a grant of TPS to an individual is not an ‘admission' for purposes of adjustment of status. But an individual who has been granted TPS and subsequently travels with TPS travel authorization meets the standard of “inspected and admitted” for adjustment of status petitions, and may therefore apply for permanent residence if a green card is immediately available in a category the TPS holder is eligible for.

Many of the over 400,000 TPS beneficiaries living in the United States live in our own community of Virginia Beach, Virginia and surrounding Hampton Roads cities, and have established their families and lives here. 

If you have questions about applying for advanced parole please reach out to us at (757) 422-8472, or send us a message on our website. You can also schedule an appointment with one of our attorneys by clicking on this link.

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