USCIS extends work permits for Nicaraguans under TPS

The U.S. government extended the work permits of Nicaraguans currently registered and protected by Temporary Protected Status (TPS).

The U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS) announced that Nicaraguans with TPS, whose work permits under the "A-12" and "C-19" category have an expiration date of January 5, 2018 or January 5, 2019, will receive an automatic extension of the document until April 2, 2019.

This only applies to Nicaraguans who re-registered for TPS between December 15, 2017 through February 13, 2018.

These individuals do not need to apply for a new work permit. They will be able to demonstrate the automatic extension of their work permit by means of the official notice published in the Federal Register (Federal Register).

The extension of work permits will take place after a federal judge in October ordered a preliminary injunction prohibiting the termination of TPS for Nicaragua, El Salvador, Haiti and Sudan.

U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) will also accept late re-registrations for those who have a good reason for not re-registering on time. These individuals should seek legal advice before filing their late re-registration applications.

Uncertain future for TPS

President Trump's administration has appealed the decision of the federal judge who ordered to suspend the cancellation of TPS for four countries, including Nicaragua, and imposed the preliminary block.

If the U.S. Court of Appeals or the U.S. Supreme Court does not reverse the preliminary injunction, USCIS will grant a new extension of work permits for Nicaraguans for another nine months, until January 2, 2020. That notice would be announced 30 days before April 2, 2019.

Should a higher federal court remove the preliminary injunction and authorize the termination of TPS, that would allow DHS to end TPS for Nicaragua, El Salvador, Haiti and Sudan.

If so, termination of the program would take effect 120 days after the final order authorizing the elimination of TPS is issued or on the previously announced termination date for each country. Whichever date is later will be taken into account.

TPS for El Salvador

TPS for Salvadorans is scheduled to end on September 9, 2019.

The government will provide information on TPS for Salvadorans as the cancellation date approaches. If the preliminary blockade continues past that date, DHS could issue an extension of work permits for Salvadorans.

Beware of fraud

As the name of the program indicates, TPS is temporary and therefore will end. Therefore, it is important that anyone currently registered for TPS immediately consult with an immigration attorney to discuss their legal options.

Beware of immigration fraud and do not seek legal advice from notarios, immigration consultants, multi-service or paper pushers. These people, who by law cannot give legal advice, could jeopardize your immigration cases because they do not have the necessary knowledge, nor the necessary permits to practice law.