Temporary protected status, or TPS, is a status put upon a particular country's citizens if the country is in a state of strife. TPS allows the citizens of the qualifying country to live and work in the United States without the fear of being removed. If a citizen is put into removal proceedings due to an expired visa, they cannot be removed while their country is under TPS. Their home country is too unsafe due to disasters such as severe internal fighting, an outbreak of disease, or worse.

How Do I Get TPS?

If you live in one of these countries, you may be able to get help from TPS, depending on when you arrived in the United States.



  • Under 14 - $50
  • 14-65 (with I-765) - $515
  • 14-65 (w/o I-765) - $135
  • 66+ - $135

What are the Benefits?

TPS prevents you from being forcibly removed from the U.S. and being sent back. While in the U.S., you can also seek work authorization to maintain your standards of living. It is hard to get a green card under TPS. To get lawful permanent resident status, you must get it through a family member who is a U.S. citizen, a petition from an employer, or meet one of the requirements set forth by the U.S. As it stands, TPS does not qualify as a requirement to change your status. However, there are limited cases where a person under TPS has someone petition on their behalf to gain permanent status.

Are There Drawbacks?

TPS can be removed at any time by the United States. If the U.S. finds that your home country has emerged from whatever strife it has been in, you may be removed. In practice, TPS designations are routinely extended every 18 months, and are rarely lifted. Nevertheless, TPS is not the most stable status to have, and does not provide the same benefits as permanent residence or citizenship. If you are interested in asylum or other forms of permanent residence, contact an immigration attorney to know your options.

TPS Eligibility

Submit any claims of evidence of the following to gain TPS.

  • Be a citizen of the qualified country who formerly lived there (Provide with birth certificate or former national ID)
  • You have lived in the U.S. since your country was put under TPS (Provide date with passport or I-94)
  • You are competent in English

You cannot get TPS if you have done one of the following:

  • Felony conviction
  • Two or more misdemeanor convictions
  • You have been found inadmissible due to security or criminal concerns
  • You have persecuted or terrorized individual(s)
  • Did not live in the U.S. when your country was put in TPS
  • You have not consistently lived in the United States as a resident
  • Failed to file proper paperwork during registration time
  • Failed to re-register for TPS

Do you have more questions about Temporary Protected Status?

Contact the lawyers at Salmon-Haas. Their experience as immigration attorneys has helped hundreds of people get the help they need. If you want to explore TPS or any other options, they can help you.

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