Liberia, Guinea, and Sierra Leone are Awarded Temporary Protected Status Designations

Maria del Carmen Ramos
Maria del Carmen Ramos

On November 20, 2014, the Secretary of Homeland Security announced that he would be designating Liberia, Guinea, and Sierra Leone for Temporary Protected Status (TPS) for 18 months, effective November 21, 2014 through May 20, 2015. This is in large part due to the extensiveness and severity of the Ebola outbreak ravaging the region.

As a result of this announcement, eligible nationals of Liberia, Guinea, and Sierra Leone (and people without nationality who last habitually resided in one of those three countries) are authorized to work and obtain an Employment Authorization Document (EAD) and will be permitted to stay in the United States.

To be eligible for TPS, applicants must demonstrate that they satisfy all eligibility requirements as set forth on the TPS Web page, including the continuous physical presence and continuous residence in the United States requirements.  Applicants are also required to undergo thorough security checks. Any applicant who has been convicted of any felony or two or more misdemeanors committed in the United States, is inadmissible under immigration laws, is subject to any of the mandatory bars to asylum, or who poses a threat to national security, will not be eligible for TPS.

Eligible nationals applying for TPS must submit a Form I-821, Application for Temporary Protected Status, along with evidence of identity and nationality, date of entry, and continuous residence and the applicable filing fee. All TPS applicants, regardless of whether they want an EAD, must also submit Form I-765, Application for Employment Authorization. Fee waivers are available for applicants who can demonstrate an inability to pay. Applicants unable to pay the applicable fees should file a Form I-912, Request for Fee Waiver, or submit a written request accompanied by supporting documentation. USCIS will reject the TPS application of any applicant who fails to submit the required filing fees or a properly documented fee-waiver request.

For more information, please contact Maria del Carmen Ramos at 813.227.2252 or

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