On September 20, 2023, the U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS) granted the expansion for Venezuelans to be eligible for a Temporary Protected Status (TPS). Venezuelan TPS ⁱ has been in effect since early 2021.¹
TPS is a temporary immigrant status that is given to people from certain countries whose conditions make it unsafe for them to return safely or, in some cases, when the country can’t handle the return of its citizens properly. For this process to work, you must already be in the United States.
What happened last night?
DHS Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas said that, because of the current immigration crisis in Venezuela, about 472,000 Venezuelans already in the U.S. could qualify for an 18-month TPS. This means that they will not be deported and will be able to get work permits! To be eligible, Venezuelan nationals need to be present in the U.S. on or before July 31, 2023.²
Applicants for TPS under this change must show that they are Venezuelan nationals (or individuals without nationality who last lived in Venezuela on a regular basis) who have lived in the United States constantly since July 31, 2023, and meet other standard requirements.
An upcoming notice in the Federal Register will explain the eligibility requirements, timelines, and steps that are needed for current beneficiaries to re-register and renew their work permits, and for new applicants to file their first application under this redesignation and be able to legally work.