The Department of Homeland Security (DHS) today announced the termination of the
Protected Status (TPS) designation of Burundi; the designation, however, will
remain in effect through May 1, 2009. After reviewing country conditions and consulting
with the appropriate Government agencies, the Secretary of Homeland Security,
determined that conditions in Burundi no longer support the TPS designation and
is therefore terminating the designation.
This termination is effective at 12:01 a.m., local time, May 2, 2009, in order
to provide an orderly transition for affected individuals. To allow sufficient
time for eligible persons to re-register for the final 18 months of TPS for Burundi,
the current Employment
Authorization Documents (EADs) held by individuals who have been granted TPS
are automatically extended through May 2, 2008. This will allow sufficient time
for eligible TPS beneficiaries to receive a new EAD without any lapse in employment.
The Notice published by DHS in the Federal Register today informs eligible nationals
of Burundi (or aliens having no nationality who last habitually resided in Burundi)
with TPS of the procedures to re-register for TPS benefits (72 FR 61172). The
60-day re-registration period begins on October 29, 2007 and will end on December
28, 2007. Re-registration is limited to persons who have previously registered
for TPS under the designation of Burundi and whose applications were granted or
remain pending. Re-registration is required in order to maintain TPS and to receive
work authorization through May 1, 2009. Approximately, 30 nationals of Burundi
who presently receive benefits under the Burundi TPS designation will be affected.
Upon the conclusion of TPS status, former TPS beneficiaries return to the same
immigration status they maintained before registering for TPS (unless that status
has since expired or been terminated), or to any other status they may have acquired
while registered for TPS. Accordingly, if an individual did not have lawful status
at the time of receiving TPS benefits, and did not obtain any other status during
the TPS designation period, he or she will revert to being without lawful status
upon the termination of the designation of Burundi for TPS. Such individuals are
expected to depart the United States on or before May 2, 2009. Those who do not
comply with this requirement may be subject to removal.
As of May 2, 2009, former TPS beneficiaries will no longer be eligible for a stay
of removal or an EAD under the TPS program. The conclusion of the TPS designation
for Burundi does not necessarily affect pending applications for other forms of
immigration relief or protection. Former TPS beneficiaries, however, will begin
to accrue unlawful presence as of May 2, 2009, if they have not been granted any
other immigration status or protection, or if they have no pending application
for certain benefits. Individuals who accrue certain periods of unlawful presence
in the United States are ineligible for certain immigration benefits for a specified
period of time.