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Frequently Asked Questions on TPS

TPS is a temporary legal status established by Congress as part of the Immigration Act of 1990, for people from designated countries fleeing armed conflict, environmental disaster, or other extraordinary circumstances that prevent them from safely returning to their home countries.

Once a country is designated, nationals from that country who are already living in the US may apply. TPS recipients must regularly re-register to maintain their status for as long as the designation continues.

Benefits include:

Protection from deportation. You cannot be deported while maintaining TPS, as long as you do not commit a crime or otherwise violate your TPS status.

Protection from immigration detention. You cannot be detained by ICE while you have TPS status as long as you do not commit a crime or otherwise violate your TPS status.

Work Authorization. You are eligible to apply for work authorization

Apply for Permission to Travel. You can apply to travel outside the United States. Please note that this is not automatic and requires a separate application from your TPS application after you have been approved for TPS. CASA recommends consulting with an attorney before traveling outside the United States.

No Unlawful Presence. You will not acquire unlawful presence ( which can affect applications in the future and other immigration relief that you may qualify for in the future).

On April 15, 2022, the Biden Administration announced a new 18-month Temporary Protected Status (TPS) for Cameroon. This applies to people who are Cameroonian nationals or people who do not have a nationality and their last country of residence was Cameroon.

There is currently no registration period stated by USCIS.  The government will publish a notice in the Federal Register soon to tell people when they can apply.

The TPS application costs $50 (regardless of age) and $85 for biometrics (if you are older than 14) for a total fee of $135. If you are over 14 and are also applying for work authorization there is an additional $410 fee (for a total of $545).

Everyone has to apply individually for TPS (you cannot apply for your children or other family members.)

CAN will be offering free legal consultations to all CAN members. 

Register with @CamAdvocacy now to receive pro bono legal assistance and apply for #TPS4Cameroon!

TPS is a temporary status. There is no path to citizenship. TPS is only valid for the 18 months designation period. This period may be extended by the Department of Homeland Security.
Asylum is a permanent status and can lead to permanent residency and citizenship.

We recommend that you consult with an immigration attorney to decide how to proceed. For CAN members, you can fill out the CAN legal assistance request form to speak with an attorney.

Yes. you can apply for TPS while your asylum case is pending or still submit your asylum application. Having a pending asylum application will not affect your eligibility for TPS, but could affect how your asylum case proceeds. Under current regulations and policy, the Asylum Office may find that you are ineligible for asylum and either:

refer your case to the immigration court where you may re-apply for asylum; or
deny your application for asylum without a referral to the immigration court.

If the Asylum Officer finds that you are ineligible for asylum, your legal status at the time of that decision will determine what process the Asylum Office must follow.

If you have Temporary Protected Status (TPS) and the Asylum Office finds you are ineligible for asylum your case will not be referred to the immigration court. This means that you likely will not have the opportunity to continue to pursue asylum unless you are placed into removal proceedings in the future or you meet the criteria to reopen your asylum case with the Asylum Office.

If you do not have TPS, and you appear to be inadmissible or deportable, and the Asylum Office finds you are ineligible for asylum the Asylum Office will issue a decision finding that you are ineligible for asylum and will refer your case to the immigration court to appear before an immigration judge for deportation proceedings. In immigration court, if the immigration judge finds that you are inadmissible or deportable, you will have the opportunity to apply for asylum for a second time as a defense to deportation.

Yes. When you apply for TPS, you are not required to also apply for a work permit. You can decide if you want to apply for a work permit based on TPS or keep the work permit associated with your asylum application. CASA recommends consulting with an immigration attorney before making this decision.