U.S. extends TPS status for Haitians for 18 months

The U.S. Department of Homeland Security said today that it has extended Temporary Protected Status (TPS) for Haitians for an additional 18 months, the second such extension made since the program went into effect in the days following the Jan. 2010 earthquake. The extension of TPS for Haiti will begin Jan. 23, 2013, and end July 22, 2014.

Secretary Janet Napolitano Napolitano said the government would also extend the suspension of certain requirements for F-1 non-immigrant Haitian students.

More from the DHS press release follows:

"Current Haitian TPS beneficiaries, who have continuously resided in the United States since Jan. 12, 2011, and seek to extend their TPS status, must re-register during the 60-day re-registration period that runs through Nov. 30, 2012, if they wish to maintain their TPS. U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) encourages beneficiaries to re-register as soon as possible within the 60-day period. USCIS will accept applications starting today through Nov. 30, 2012. Individuals who have not continuously resided in the United States since Jan. 12, 2011, will not be eligible.

The 18-month extension also allows TPS re-registrants to apply for a new Employment Authorization Document (EAD). Eligible Haitian TPS beneficiaries who timely re-register will receive a new EAD, if requested, with an expiration date of July 22, 2014. USCIS recognizes that all re-registrants may not receive their new EADs until after their current EADs expire. Therefore, USCIS is extending currently valid TPS Haiti EADs bearing a Jan. 22, 2013, expiration date for an additional six months, through July 22, 2013.

In addition, the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) is extending the suspension of certain requirements for F-1 nonimmigrant Haitian students. The extension will enable these F-1 students to continue to obtain employment authorization, work an increased number of hours while school is in session, and reduce their course load, while maintaining their F-1 student status. The suspension of the regulatory requirements will remain in effect for an additional 18 months, through July 22, 2014. Further details about this extension may be found in the Federal Register notice published today.

For information on the TPS application process and eligibility requirements, go to www.uscis.gov/tps.