Categories New HampshireState Regulations and Laws

Refugee Services for Asylum Seekers in New Hampshire

1. What is Temporary Protected Status (TPS) and how does it differ from asylum?

Temporary Protected Status (TPS) is a temporary immigration status granted to eligible individuals from certain countries that are facing ongoing armed conflict, environmental disaster, or other extraordinary conditions that prevent the safe return of its nationals. TPS provides protection from deportation and allows individuals to work legally in the United States for a designated period. Unlike asylum, TPS is granted based on the overall country conditions rather than individual persecution claims.

1. TPS is typically granted for individuals from specific countries designated by the U.S. government where conditions are deemed unsafe for return, whereas asylum is sought on an individual basis due to fear of persecution.
2. TPS beneficiaries have a temporary, renewable status while the conditions in their home country persist, whereas those granted asylum can eventually apply for lawful permanent resident status.

2. Which countries currently have nationals eligible for TPS in the US?

As of now, the countries whose nationals are currently eligible for Temporary Protected Status (TPS) in the United States are:

1. El Salvador
2. Haiti
3. Honduras
4. Nepal
5. Nicaragua
6. Somalia
7. South Sudan
8. Sudan
9. Syria
10. Venezuela
11. Yemen

Each of these countries has been designated for TPS based on conditions such as ongoing armed conflict, environmental disasters, or other extraordinary and temporary circumstances that prevent its nationals from safely returning home. TPS provides temporary protection to eligible individuals from these countries who are already in the United States, allowing them to live and work legally in the country until conditions in their home countries improve.

3. How does someone apply for TPS in the US?

To apply for Temporary Protected Status (TPS) in the US, an individual must meet the eligibility requirements set by the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS). The application process typically involves the following steps:

1. Eligibility Verification: The applicant must be a national of a country designated for TPS by the U.S. government. They should also meet other specific requirements such as continuous residence in the US and be physically present in the US on the specified date.

2. Filing Form I-821: The applicant must file Form I-821, Application for Temporary Protected Status, along with any required supporting documents. This form is used to request TPS and provides biographical information as well as details about eligibility.

3. Paying Fees: The applicant must pay the required fees for the application. In some cases, fee waivers may be available for those who cannot afford to pay.

4. Biometric Appointment: After submitting the application, the applicant may be scheduled for a biometric services appointment to provide fingerprints, photograph, and/or signature for identity verification purposes.

5. Interview (if required): Depending on the circumstances, USCIS may request an interview with the applicant to further assess eligibility for TPS.

6. Decision: After reviewing the application and supporting documents, USCIS will make a decision on whether to grant TPS to the applicant. If approved, the individual will receive an Employment Authorization Document (EAD) and be granted temporary protection from deportation.

It is essential for applicants to follow the guidelines provided by USCIS and submit all required documentation accurately and in a timely manner to ensure a smooth application process for Temporary Protected Status in the US.

4. What are the requirements for obtaining TPS status?

To qualify for Temporary Protected Status (TPS) in the United States, individuals must meet the following requirements:

1. Eligibility Criteria: Individuals must be a national of a country designated for TPS or have no nationality but have last resided in the designated country.

2. Time of Entry: Applicants must have been continuously physically present in the United States since the effective date of the most recent TPS designation for their country, unless extenuating circumstances apply.

3. Continuous Residence: Applicants must have continuously resided in the U.S. since the date specified for their country’s TPS designation. Traveling outside the U.S. for more than a certain number of days may disrupt continuity of residence.

4. Criminal Record: Individuals must not have been convicted of any felony or two or more misdemeanors in the United States, or be deemed a threat to national security or public safety.

Additionally, applicants must file their TPS application during the designated registration period and include all required documentation to support their eligibility. It is crucial to follow all the specific guidelines and requirements outlined by the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) to ensure the successful application for Temporary Protected Status.

5. How long does TPS status last?

Temporary Protected Status (TPS) status typically lasts for a period of 6 to 18 months at a time, as determined by the U.S. government based on the conditions in the home country that led to the TPS designation. However, it is important to note that TPS can be extended by the government if the conditions in the country of origin have not improved, allowing TPS beneficiaries to continue to reside and work legally in the United States. It is crucial for individuals with TPS status to stay informed about any updates or changes to their TPS designation to ensure they maintain their legal status in the country.

6. Can TPS recipients work legally in the US?

Yes, Temporary Protected Status (TPS) recipients are authorized to work legally in the United States during the period of their TPS designation. They are granted Employment Authorization Documents (EADs), commonly known as work permits, which allow them to seek employment and work for any employer in the country. TPS beneficiaries can engage in lawful employment activities and are required to maintain their eligibility for TPS status to continue working legally in the U.S. It is important for TPS holders to be aware of the specific conditions and requirements related to employment authorization to avoid any potential issues.

7. Can TPS recipients travel outside the US?

Yes, TPS recipients can generally travel outside the United States with authorization from the U.S. government. This authorization is granted through a process known as Advance Parole. TPS recipients must apply for Advance Parole before leaving the country and provide a valid reason for their travel, such as humanitarian reasons or family emergencies. It is important to note that traveling outside the United States without Advance Parole could result in the loss of TPS status. Additionally, TPS recipients should ensure that they have all necessary travel documents, including a valid passport and visa if required for their destination country, before departing. It is recommended to consult with an immigration attorney or legal expert familiar with TPS regulations before making any travel plans.

8. Is TPS a pathway to permanent residency or citizenship?

No, Temporary Protected Status (TPS) does not directly provide a pathway to permanent residency or citizenship. TPS is a temporary immigration status granted to individuals from specific countries that are experiencing ongoing armed conflict, environmental disasters, or other extraordinary conditions. It allows beneficiaries to remain in the United States for a designated period of time, typically between 6 to 18 months, and provides protection from deportation. However, TPS does not lead to permanent residency or citizenship on its own. TPS beneficiaries must maintain their eligibility requirements and continue to meet the criteria set by the U.S. government to remain in the program. If a TPS holder wants to apply for permanent residency, they would need to explore other immigration options such as family-based sponsorship, employment-based visas, or other forms of relief available under U.S. immigration law. It is essential for TPS holders to consult with an immigration attorney or accredited representative to understand their options and potential pathways to obtaining permanent residency or citizenship.

9. What are the rights and responsibilities of TPS recipients?

1. Temporary Protected Status (TPS) recipients have the right to remain in the United States legally for a specified period of time due to conditions in their home country that make it unsafe for them to return. This allows them to live and work in the U.S. without fear of deportation.

2. TPS recipients also have the right to apply for and obtain employment authorization documents, which allow them to work legally in the U.S. during the time period of their TPS designation.

3. TPS recipients have the responsibility to maintain their legal status by adhering to all the conditions set forth by the U.S. government for TPS holders. This may include regularly re-registering for TPS, keeping their address updated with the government, and following all U.S. laws.

4. TPS recipients are also responsible for staying informed about any updates or changes to their TPS status, including any announcements about potential extensions or terminations of their TPS designation.

5. TPS recipients should also be aware of their tax obligations and comply with U.S. tax laws by filing income taxes on time and accurately.

6. Additionally, TPS recipients are expected to conduct themselves as law-abiding residents of the U.S., respecting the laws and norms of their communities and avoiding any criminal activity.

In summary, TPS recipients have the right to live and work in the U.S. legally, along with the responsibility to comply with the conditions set forth by the U.S. government and to conduct themselves in a lawful and responsible manner while in the country.

10. Can TPS status be renewed?

Yes, Temporary Protected Status (TPS) can be renewed. TPS is granted to individuals from certain countries that are experiencing ongoing armed conflict, environmental disasters, or other extraordinary and temporary conditions that make it unsafe for their nationals to return. The status is typically granted for a limited period of time, usually 6 to 18 months, but can be extended by the Secretary of Homeland Security based on the ongoing conditions in the country of origin. To renew TPS status, individuals must re-register during specific registration periods announced by the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS). It is essential to follow the guidelines and deadlines set by USCIS to maintain legal status and work authorization. Failure to timely renew TPS status can result in loss of protection and potential deportation proceedings.

11. What are the implications of a TPS designation being terminated for a specific country?

1. When a Temporary Protected Status (TPS) designation is terminated for a specific country, there are significant implications for the individuals from that country who were benefiting from TPS.

2. First and foremost, those individuals lose their legal protection from deportation, and their authorization to work in the United States is also terminated. This can lead to widespread uncertainty and fear among TPS holders, as they face the risk of being separated from their families and communities and forced to return to a country that may still be experiencing unsafe conditions.

3. Additionally, the termination of TPS for a country can have broader economic and social impacts. Many TPS holders have been living in the US for years, contributing to the economy and their local communities. With the termination of their status, there may be disruptions in industries that rely on TPS holders for labor, as well as potential strains on social services and community support networks.

4. The termination of TPS for a specific country also raises questions about the US government’s commitment to protecting individuals who are unable to safely return to their home countries. It may lead to calls for legislative action to provide a more permanent solution for TPS holders, such as a pathway to legal residency or citizenship.

5. Overall, the termination of TPS for a specific country has wide-ranging implications for both the individuals directly affected and the communities in which they reside. It highlights the need for comprehensive immigration reform that takes into account the humanitarian considerations of individuals who have built their lives in the US under TPS protection.

12. Are TPS recipients eligible for any government benefits?

1. TPS recipients are generally not eligible for most government benefits. This is because Temporary Protected Status is a temporary immigration status granted to individuals from designated countries experiencing ongoing armed conflict, environmental disasters, or other extraordinary conditions. TPS does not provide a pathway to permanent residency or citizenship, and therefore does not confer the same benefits and entitlements as those afforded to lawful permanent residents or citizens.

2. However, while TPS recipients may not qualify for certain federal public benefits programs, they may still be eligible for other forms of assistance depending on their individual circumstances and the state in which they reside. For example, some states may offer certain benefits or services to TPS holders, such as in-state tuition rates for higher education or access to state-funded health programs. Additionally, TPS recipients who have work authorization may be able to access benefits such as Social Security and Medicare for which they have contributed through their employment.

3. It is important for TPS recipients to understand their eligibility for different forms of assistance and to seek guidance from qualified immigration attorneys or advocacy organizations to ensure they are accessing the support available to them. Overall, while TPS does not automatically grant eligibility for government benefits, there may be limited avenues through which recipients can access certain forms of assistance at the state or local level.

13. What is the role of refugee resettlement agencies in supporting TPS recipients?

Refugee resettlement agencies play a crucial role in supporting Temporary Protected Status (TPS) recipients in several key ways:

1. Information and Advocacy: These agencies provide TPS recipients with up-to-date information on their rights and responsibilities, as well as advocate on their behalf to ensure they are treated fairly under the law.

2. Case Management: They offer case management services to help TPS recipients access a range of support services, including housing assistance, job placement, and language classes.

3. Legal Assistance: Refugee resettlement agencies often have legal experts on staff or refer TPS recipients to legal aid organizations that can help them navigate the complexities of the immigration system and apply for any available benefits.

4. Cultural Orientation: They provide cultural orientation programs to help TPS recipients adjust to their new environment and connect with their local community.

5. Community Support: These agencies connect TPS recipients with peer support groups and community resources to help them build social networks and feel more integrated into their new community.

Overall, refugee resettlement agencies serve as a critical lifeline for TPS recipients, offering a wide range of support services to help them successfully navigate the challenges of living in a new country under temporary protected status.

14. Can TPS recipients apply for a green card while maintaining TPS status?

Under current immigration laws, Temporary Protected Status (TPS) recipients are generally eligible to apply for a green card while maintaining their TPS status. However, there are several important considerations to keep in mind:

1. TPS does not directly lead to permanent residency: TPS is a temporary humanitarian relief program that does not provide a direct pathway to obtaining a green card.

2. Eligibility for a green card: TPS recipients must still meet the eligibility criteria for a green card based on other categories, such as family sponsorship or employment-based preferences.

3. Adjustment of Status: TPS recipients may be able to adjust their status to permanent residency if they are eligible and have an available immigrant visa. They can do so through a family member, employer sponsorship, or other qualifying categories.

4. Travel restrictions: TPS recipients should also be aware of any travel restrictions under their TPS status that could affect their ability to apply for a green card.

5. Consultation with an immigration attorney: Due to the complexity of immigration laws and regulations, TPS recipients seeking to apply for a green card while maintaining their TPS status should consult with an experienced immigration attorney to understand their options and navigate the process effectively.

15. Can TPS status be revoked?

Yes, Temporary Protected Status (TPS) can be revoked under certain circumstances. The Secretary of Homeland Security has the authority to terminate TPS for a particular country if the conditions that led to the designation of TPS no longer exist or if the country is deemed safe for the return of its nationals. Additionally, TPS status can also be revoked if an individual’s criminal record or conduct violates the terms of their TPS designation. It is important for TPS beneficiaries to stay informed about their legal rights and responsibilities to avoid any actions that could potentially lead to the revocation of their status. It is recommended for individuals with TPS to consult with immigration attorneys or legal experts to understand their rights and obligations to maintain their protected status.

16. Are there any specific services available to TPS recipients in New Hampshire?

In New Hampshire, Temporary Protected Status (TPS) recipients may have access to a range of services to support their integration and well-being. Some specific services that may be available to TPS recipients in New Hampshire include:

1. Legal Assistance: Organizations such as immigration clinics, legal aid societies, and pro bono lawyers may provide legal assistance to TPS recipients regarding their immigration status, renewals, and other legal issues.

2. Social Services: TPS recipients may have access to social service agencies that offer assistance with housing, healthcare, food, employment, and other basic needs.

3. Language and Job Training: Programs may be available to help TPS recipients improve their English language skills, as well as access job training and placement services to enhance their employment opportunities.

4. Mental Health Support: Counseling services and mental health resources may be accessible to TPS recipients in New Hampshire to help them cope with the stress and challenges of their situation.

5. Community Organizations: Nonprofit organizations and community groups in New Hampshire may offer support and resources tailored to the needs of TPS recipients, such as cultural events, workshops, and advocacy efforts.

It is important for TPS recipients in New Hampshire to research and connect with local organizations and service providers to fully understand the range of services available to them in their area.

17. How does TPS impact family members of the TPS recipient?

1. Temporary Protected Status (TPS) can have significant impacts on the family members of the TPS recipient. Family members can benefit indirectly from the primary recipient’s TPS status by being included as derivatives and receiving protection from deportation as long as they meet the eligibility criteria. This protection can provide a sense of security and stability to the entire family unit.

2. Furthermore, family members of TPS recipients may also be eligible for work authorization, allowing them to legally work and contribute to their households and communities. This can be crucial for families’ financial well-being and can enhance their overall quality of life.

3. TPS recipients often act as key providers and caregivers within their families. If a TPS holder were to lose their status and face deportation, it could have severe emotional, financial, and practical consequences for their family members, including separation, economic hardship, and psychological distress.

4. Overall, the impact of TPS on family members is substantial, extending beyond just the direct recipient to influence the well-being and livelihood of their loved ones as well. The protection and benefits conferred by TPS can help keep families intact, support their economic stability, and safeguard their overall welfare.

18. Can TPS recipients apply for asylum while in TPS status?

Yes, TPS recipients can potentially apply for asylum while in TPS status. Here are some key points to consider regarding this situation:
1. Asylum is a separate form of protection from Temporary Protected Status (TPS). While TPS provides temporary relief from deportation and work authorization for individuals from designated countries facing ongoing armed conflict, environmental disasters, or other extraordinary conditions, asylum is granted to individuals who can prove they have a well-founded fear of persecution if they were to return to their home country.
2. TPS recipients may be eligible to apply for asylum if they fear returning to their country of origin due to new circumstances that have arisen since they were granted TPS, or if they did not initially apply for asylum but now believe they qualify for it.
3. It’s important for TPS recipients considering applying for asylum to consult with an immigration attorney or accredited representative to understand the nuances of their individual case and navigate the complex asylum application process effectively. Being granted asylum can lead to more long-lasting protection and potential pathways to permanent residence in the United States.

19. Are there any advocacy or support groups for TPS recipients in New Hampshire?

Yes, there are advocacy and support groups for TPS recipients in New Hampshire. One such organization is the New Hampshire Alliance for Immigrants and Refugees (NHAIR), which works to support and advocate for immigrants, including TPS recipients, in the state. They provide resources, legal assistance, and community support for individuals navigating the complex immigration system. Additionally, the American Friends Service Committee (AFSC) in New Hampshire also offers support to TPS recipients through their immigrant rights advocacy and support programs. These organizations play a crucial role in assisting TPS recipients with information, resources, and advocacy to safeguard their rights and provide a supportive community for those facing uncertainties due to their immigration status.

20. What are the current policy developments or changes regarding TPS under the Biden administration?

Under the Biden administration, there have been several policy developments and changes regarding Temporary Protected Status (TPS).

1. Expansion of TPS eligibility: The Biden administration has initiated efforts to expand TPS eligibility for certain countries, including Venezuela and Haiti. This move allows more individuals from these countries to benefit from TPS protections, such as protection from deportation and work authorization.

2. Reversal of previous administration decisions: The administration has rescinded several policies implemented by the previous administration that sought to end TPS for certain countries. This shift in policy reinstates protections for individuals from countries such as El Salvador, Honduras, Nepal, Sudan, Nicaragua, and Haiti.

3. Review of TPS designations: The Biden administration has also launched a review of the TPS designations for several countries to assess whether the conditions that initially warranted TPS designation still exist. This review may lead to potential extensions or changes in TPS designations for affected countries.

Overall, the Biden administration has demonstrated a more favorable stance towards TPS beneficiaries by expanding eligibility, reversing previous decisions, and conducting reviews to ensure that individuals in need of protection continue to receive TPS benefits. These policy developments underline the administration’s commitment to upholding humanitarian principles and providing support to vulnerable populations.