Obtaining Temporary Protected Status (TPS) can make a major difference for a vulnerable immigrant. It can protect someone without documentation from removal from the country. Their TPS can help them remain in the country and even obtain the right to work while they are here.
The United States has the authority to designate specific nations as volatile enough to qualify its residents and citizens for TPS. However, individual applicants can still run into challenges when seeking a TPS from the United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS).
Difficulties accessing records
Especially if someone fled their country of origin, they may not have brought any official documentation with them. Their undocumented status in the United States and the conflict or other issues in their country of origin may complicate any attempts to secure official records affirming their residency. Without the right records, someone may not be able to prove that their nationality qualifies them for a TPS.
In theory, even individuals with minor criminal records can still secure a TPS. However, those who have violated the laws in the United States or in their country of origin often have a harder time passing background checks and securing a TPS when they need it. There can be a major burden on those facing pending criminal charges abroad when seeking a TPS in the United States.
Challenges to the inclusion of their country
Unfortunately, while designating a country’s residence as eligible for TPS is often a humanitarian act, it is one that becomes highly politicized. That may mean that despite evidence of unrest and persecution, there could be challenges about including specific countries among those that qualify for TPS. Through no fault of their own, people may find their application stuck in limbo while lawmakers debate about their future.
Especially when an immigrant does not have the appropriate documentation, pursuing TPS can be a nerve-wracking endeavor. Learning more about TPS designations and the challenges people may face when pursuing them can benefit those who believe they would be in danger should they return to their country of origin. Working with an experienced legal professional throughout the immigration process can also help someone who is in danger to safeguard their rights and interests until their case is resolved.