Options for TPS Holders
On January 8, 2018, the Secretary of the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) announced the decision to terminate Temporary Protected Status (TPS) of about 200,000 Salvadorans who have been living in the United States since at least 2001. The designation will officially terminate on September 9, 2019, giving TPS recipients a transition period of 18 months to leave the U.S., adjust their immigration status to permanent legal residence or face potential deportation.
Some TPS holders may be able to obtain legal permanent residency based on their relationship with a U.S. citizen spouse or adult child. In recent decisions, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth and Sixth Circuits have ruled that if an individual has been granted TPS status, even if he or she initially entered the United States illegally, they may be eligible to have their status adjusted. The Courts found that “the TPS statute clearly provides that recipients count as being ‘inspected and admitted’ for purposes of adjusting their status.”
If you are a TPS holder, who has a U.S. citizen spouse or a U.S. citizen adult child who is at least 21 years old, and currently live within Ninth Circuit (California, Arizona, Nevada, Idaho, Montana, Washington, Oregon, Alaska, and Hawaii, as well as the Northern Marianas Islands and Guam) and Sixth Circuit (Kentucky, Michigan, Ohio, and Tennessee), you may be able to adjust the status of TPS aliens to that of a lawful temporary or permanent resident. An applicant must also meet all other eligibility requirements for adjustment of status. It is imperative to consult with an experienced immigration attorney before starting the application process.