The Department of Homeland Security has designated Venezuela for Temporary Protected Status (TPS). In effect for 18 months (until September 2022), this new designation allows Venezuelan nationals currently living in the U.S. to file initial applications for TPS, if they meet eligibility requirements. Those without nationality who last resided in Venezuela are also eligible to apply.
The currently unstable conditions in Venezuela are preventing nationals from returning safely, which is the reason for this designation.
“The living conditions in Venezuela reveal a country in turmoil, unable to protect its own citizens,” said Secretary of Homeland Security Alejandro N. Mayorkas. “It is in times of extraordinary and temporary circumstances like these that the United States steps forward to support eligible Venezuelan nationals already present here, while their home country seeks to right itself out of the current crises.”
Those who can prove continuous residence in the U.S. as of March 8, 2021 are eligible for the temporary TPS designation.
Applications must be filed with U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services within the 180-day registration period. They may also apply for Employment Authorization Documents (EADs) and for travel authorization. Applicants must also undergo security and background checks as part of determining eligibility (see the Federal Register Notice (FRN) for more information).
Those that are already covered by the DED-related EADs (covering Venezuelan nationals for 18 months starting January 19, 2021) should still apply for TPS so that they are still covered after DED expires.
And while smugglers or others may claim the border is now open, travel and admission restrictions at the border remain in place due to the pandemic. For their own health and safety, Venezuelans who qualify for the TPS designation should apply and try to remain in the U.S. until conditions in Venezuela improve.
Get Help Applying for a TPS Designation
The JacksonWhite immigration law team is ready to help you apply for the TPS designation for Venezuela. Our experienced team can help you determine if you qualify, and will ensure that your application has the best chance of approval. Contact us below to get started!