U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) announced that the Department
of Homeland Security (DHS) will extend Temporary
Protected Status (TPS) for nationals of Somalia from its current expiration
date of Sept. 17, 2009 through March 17, 2011. During the past year, DHS and
the Department of State (DOS) have continued to review conditions in Somalia.
Based on this review, Secretary of Homeland Security Janet Napolitano has determined
that an 18 month extension is warranted because the armed conflict is ongoing,
and the extraordinary and temporary conditions that prompted the last Temporary
Protected Status (TPS) designation of Somalia on Sept. 4, 2001 persist.
Under the extension, individuals, who have already been granted Temporary Protected
Status (TPS), are eligible to re-register and maintain their status for an additional
18 months. There are approximately 250 nationals of Somalia who are eligible
to re-register. Certain Somalis may be eligible for late initial registration
if they meet regulatory criteria. Temporary Protected Status (TPS) does not
apply to Somali nationals who entered the United States after Sept. 4, 2001.
Nationals of Somalia (and people having no nationality who last habitually
resided in Somalia) who have been granted Temporary Protected Status must re-register
for the 18-month extension during the 60-day re-registration period beginning
July 27, 2009 and remaining in effect through September 24, 2009. Somali Temporary
Protected Status beneficiaries are strongly encouraged to apply as soon as possible
following the start of the 60-day re-registration period to allow sufficient
time for USCIS to complete all routine security checks and further application
Given the timeframes involved with processing TPS re-registration applications,
DHS recognizes the possibility that all re-registrants may not receive new Employment
Authorization Documents (EADs) until after their current EADs expire on
Sept. 17, 2009. Therefore, USCIS has automatically extended the validity of
EADs for eligible Somali TPS beneficiaries for six months through March 17,
2010. This extension will allow sufficient time for USCIS to process and re-issue
new EADs for these beneficiaries without any lapse in their employment authorization.