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Extension of the Designation of Somalia for Temporary Protected Status

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Start Preamble

AGENCY:

U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services, Department of Homeland Security.

ACTION:

Notice.

SUMMARY:

Through this Notice, the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) announces that the Secretary of Homeland Security (Secretary) is extending the designation of Somalia for Temporary Protected Status (TPS) for 18 months from September 18, 2015, through March 17, 2017.

The extension allows currently eligible TPS beneficiaries to retain TPS through March 17, 2017, so long as they otherwise continue to meet the eligibility requirements for TPS. The Secretary has determined that an extension is warranted because the conditions in Somalia that prompted the TPS designation continue to be met. There continues to be a substantial, but temporary, disruption of living conditions in Somalia due to ongoing armed conflict that would pose a serious threat to the personal safety of returning Somali nationals, as well as extraordinary and temporary conditions in the country that prevent Somali nationals from returning to Somalia in safety. The Secretary has also determined that permitting eligible Somali nationals to remain temporarily in the United States is not contrary to the national interest of the United States.

Through this Notice, DHS also sets forth procedures necessary for nationals of Somalia (or aliens having no nationality who last habitually resided in Somalia) to re-register for TPS and to apply for renewal of their Employment Authorization Documents (EADs) with U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS). Re-registration is limited to persons who have previously registered for TPS under the designation of Somalia and whose applications have been granted. Certain nationals of Somalia (or aliens having no nationality who last habitually resided in Somalia) who have not previously applied for TPS may be eligible to apply under the late initial registration provisions, if they meet: (1) At least one of the late initial filing criteria; and (2) all TPS eligibility criteria (including continuous residence in the United States since May 1, 2012, and continuous physical presence in the United States since September 18, 2012).

For individuals who have already been granted TPS under the Somalia designation, the 60-day re-registration period runs from June 1, 2015 through July 31, 2015. USCIS will issue new EADs with a March 17, 2017 expiration date to eligible Somalia TPS beneficiaries who timely re-register and apply for EADs under this extension.

DATES:

The 18-month extension of the TPS designation of Somalia is effective September 18, 2015, and will remain in effect through March 17, 2017. The 60-day re-registration period runs from June 1, 2015 through July 31, 2015. (Note: It is important for re-registrants to timely re-register during this 60-day re-registration period and not to wait until their EADs expire.)

Start Further Info

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION:

  • For further information on TPS, including guidance on the application process and additional information on eligibility, please visit the USCIS TPS Web page at http://www.uscis.gov/​tps. You can find specific information about this extension of Somalia's TPS designation by selecting “TPS Designated Country: Somalia” from the menu on the left of the TPS Web page.
  • You can also contact the TPS Operations Program Manager at the Family and Status Branch, Service Center Operations Directorate, U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services, Department of Homeland Security, 20 Massachusetts Avenue NW., Start Printed Page 31057Washington, DC 20529-2060; or by phone at (202) 272-1533 (this is not a toll-free number). Note: The phone number provided here is solely for questions regarding this TPS Notice. It is not for individual case status inquires.
  • Applicants seeking information about the status of their individual cases can check Case Status Online, available at the USCIS Web site at http://www.uscis.gov, or call the USCIS National Customer Service Center at 800-375-5283 (TTY 800-767-1833). Service is available in English and Spanish.
  • Further information will also be available at local USCIS offices upon publication of this Notice.
End Further Info End Preamble Start Supplemental Information

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

Table of Abbreviations

BIA—Board of Immigration Appeals

DHS—Department of Homeland Security

DOS—Department of State

EAD—Employment Authorization Document

FNC—Final Nonconfirmation

Government—U.S. Government

IDP—Internally Displaced Person

IJ—Immigration Judge

INA—Immigration and Nationality Act

OSC—U.S. Department of Justice, Office of Special Counsel for Immigration-Related Unfair Employment Practices

SAVE—USCIS Systematic Alien Verification for Entitlements Program

Secretary—Secretary of Homeland Security

TNC—Tentative Nonconfirmation

TPS—Temporary Protected Status

TTY—Text Telephone

UNHCR—Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees

USAID—U.S. Agency for International Development

USCIS—U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services

What is Temporary Protected Status (TPS)?

  • TPS is a temporary immigration status granted to eligible nationals of a country designated for TPS under the Immigration and Nationality Act (INA), or to eligible persons without nationality who last habitually resided in the designated country.
  • During the TPS designation period, TPS beneficiaries are eligible to remain in the United States, may not be removed, and are authorized to work and obtain EADs, so long as they continue to meet the requirements of TPS.
  • TPS beneficiaries may also be granted travel authorization as a matter of discretion.
  • The granting of TPS does not result in or lead to permanent resident status.
  • When the Secretary terminates a country's TPS designation, beneficiaries return to the same immigration status they maintained before TPS, if any (unless that status has since expired or been terminated), or to any other lawfully obtained immigration status they received while registered for TPS.

When was Somalia designated for TPS?

On September 16, 1991, the Attorney General designated Somalia for TPS based on extraordinary and temporary conditions. See 56 FR 46804 (Sept. 16, 1991). The initial designation was extended nine times based on determinations that the conditions warranting the designation continued to be met. On September 4, 2001, the Attorney General extended Somalia's TPS designation for a tenth time and redesignated Somalia for TPS. See 66 FR 46288 (Sept. 4, 2001). Under the 2001 redesignation, the Attorney General revised the date from which applicants had to show they had been “continuously residing” in and “continuously physically present” in the United States to September 4, 2001. Somalia's TPS designation was subsequently extended nine additional times, including on May 1, 2012, when the Secretary both extended and redesignated Somalia for TPS and added ongoing armed conflict as an additional basis for Somalia's TPS designation. Under the 2012 redesignation, the Secretary revised the “continuous residence” date to May 1, 2012, and the “continuous physical presence” date to September 18, 2012. See 77 FR 25723 (May 1, 2012). This announcement is the second extension of the TPS designation for Somalia since the 2012 extension and redesignation.

What authority does the Secretary of Homeland Security have to extend the designation of Somalia for TPS?

Section 244(b)(1) of the INA, 8 U.S.C. 1254a(b)(1), authorizes the Secretary, after consultation with appropriate agencies of the U.S. Government, to designate a foreign state (or part thereof) for TPS if the Secretary finds that certain country conditions exist.[1] The Secretary may then grant TPS to eligible nationals of that foreign state (or eligible aliens having no nationality who last habitually resided in that state). See INA section 244(a)(1)(A), 8 U.S.C. 1254a(a)(1)(A).

At least 60 days before the expiration of a country's TPS designation or extension, the Secretary, after consultation with appropriate Government agencies, must review the conditions in a foreign state designated for TPS to determine whether the conditions for the TPS designation continue to be met. See INA section 244(b)(3)(A), 8 U.S.C. 1254a(b)(3)(A). If the Secretary determines that a foreign state continues to meet the conditions for TPS designation, the designation may be extended for an additional period of 6, 12, or 18 months. See INA section 244(b)(3)(C), 8 U.S.C. 1254a(b)(3)(C). If the Secretary determines that the foreign state no longer meets the conditions for TPS designation, the Secretary must terminate the designation. See INA section 244(b)(3)(B), 8 U.S.C. 1254a(b)(3)(B).

Why is the Secretary extending the TPS designation for Somalia through March 17, 2017?

Over the past year, DHS and the Department of State (DOS) have continued to review conditions in Somalia. Based on this review and after consulting with DOS, the Secretary has determined that an 18-month extension is warranted because the conditions that led to the 2012 redesignation of Somalia for TPS—(1) ongoing armed conflict and (2) extraordinary and temporary conditions that prevent Somali nationals from returning to Somalia in safety—continue to exist, and that permitting eligible Somali nationals to remain temporarily in the United States is not contrary to the national interest of the United States.

Since President Hassan Sheikh Mohamud's inauguration in September 2012, the Federal Government of Somalia has made some progress in establishing government institutions, negotiating federal relationships with regional authorities, and attracting financial support from the international community. In spite of these political gains, instability and conflict persist throughout Somalia. A sustained military campaign against al-Shabaab in 2014 resulted in large numbers of civilian deaths and population displacement. Targeted attacks by al-Shabaab using suicide bombers and improvised explosive devices also resulted in significant civilian casualties. In October 2014, troops from the African Union Mission in Somalia, in coordination with the Somali National Army, successfully completed an offensive to liberate parts of south-central Somalia from al-Shabaab's control and to consolidate and expand the Somali government's security gains. Despite the offensive's success, al-Start Printed Page 31058Shabaab maintains a stronghold in some rural areas of south central Somalia that surround urban centers, and continues to attack critical targets in Somalia and the region.

Even in government-controlled areas, al-Shabaab has demonstrated the capability to carry out attacks, with particular emphasis on targeting government facilities, the facilities and movements of foreign delegations, commercial establishments frequented by government officials, foreign nationals, the development and humanitarian community and the Somali diaspora. Al-Shabaab-planned and/or conducted assassinations, suicide bombings, and indiscriminate armed attacks in civilian populated areas were frequent in Somalia over the reporting period. Insecurity further persists as a result of inter-clan and inter-factional fighting, which flares up with little or no warning. The World Health Organization reported in June 2014 that violence and conflict continue to take a heavy toll on civilians in Somalia.

Somalia's ongoing complex emergency continues to shape the humanitarian situation within the country. While fragile gains have been made since the 2011-2012 famine that resulted in the deaths of an estimated 258,000 people, ongoing climatic conditions such as drought and flooding, coupled with insecurity, conflict, and an increase in food prices continue to result in significant humanitarian need. In September 2014, the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) reported that approximately 3.1 million people, or roughly 29 percent of the country's population, are experiencing some level of food insecurity, representing a 20 percent increase since January 2014 Malnutrition rates in Somalia remain among the highest in the world, with USAID reporting in September 2014 that an estimated 218,000 children under the age of 5 are acutely malnourished.

The Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) stated in November 2014 that there are over 1.1 million internally displaced persons (IDPs) in Somalia. In addition to those internally displaced, UNHCR also noted that more than 950,000 Somalis have sought refuge in neighboring countries in the Horn of Africa and in Yemen. USAID noted that forced evictions, drought, conflict, and lack of livelihoods have displaced 130,000 Somalis since January 2014, and approximately 369,000 IDPs live in makeshift camps in Mogadishu. UNHCR reports that IDPs in Somalia often live in crowded settlements, lack adequate protection, and face forced evictions, discrimination, and gender-based violence.

The security situation remains volatile, and the risks associated with humanitarian aid work are high due to insecurity as well as direct and indirect attacks on humanitarian personnel and assets. According to the United Nations, from January to September 2014, there were 40 violent incidents against aid workers. Armed groups also made several attempts to loot relief food and disrupt food distributions. Al-Shabaab maintains control over some key supply routes, hampering commercial activities and the delivery of humanitarian assistance.

Many critical services were unavailable to Somalis because of insufficient resources and the government's limited capacity to deliver essential services and provide basic security. For instance, the health sector was unable to provide a functional system of primary or secondary health clinics, and the justice sector lacked the capacity to effectively administer justice or enforce the law.

Based upon this review and after consultation with appropriate Government agencies, the Secretary finds that:

  • The conditions that prompted the May 1, 2012 redesignation of Somalia for TPS continue to be met. See INA section 244(b)(1)(A) and (C), (b)(3)(A) and (C); 8 U.S.C. 1254a(b)(1)(A) and (C), (b)(3)(A) and (C).
  • There continues to be an ongoing armed conflict in Somalia and, due to such conflict, requiring the return of Somali nationals would pose a serious threat to their safety. See INA section 244(b)(1)(A), 8 U.S.C. 1254a(b)(1)(A).
  • There continue to be extraordinary and temporary conditions in Somalia that prevent Somali nationals from returning to Somalia in safety. See INA section 244(b)(1)(C), 8 U.S.C. 1254a(b)(1)(C).
  • It is not contrary to the national interest of the United States to permit Somalis (and persons who have no nationality who last habitually resided in Somalia) who meet the eligibility requirements of TPS to remain in the United States temporarily. See INA section 244(b)(1)(C), 8 U.S.C. 1254a(b)(1)(C).
  • The designation of Somalia for TPS should be extended for an additional 18-month period from September 18, 2015, through March 17, 2017. See INA section 244(b)(3)(C), 8 U.S.C. 1254a(b)(3)(C).
  • There are approximately 270 current Somalia TPS beneficiaries who are expected to file for re-registration under the extension.

Notice of Extension of the TPS Designation of Somalia

By the authority vested in me as Secretary under INA section 244, 8 U.S.C. 1254a, I have determined, after consultation with the appropriate Government agencies, that the conditions that prompted the redesignation of Somalia for TPS on May 1, 2012, continue to be met. See INA section 244(b)(3)(A), 8 U.S.C. 1254a(b)(3)(A). On the basis of this determination, I am extending the designation of Somalia for TPS for 18 months from September 18, 2015 through March 17, 2017. See INA section 244(b)(1)(A) and (C), (b)(2); 8 U.S.C. 1254a(b)(1)(A) and (C), (b)(2).

Start Signature

Jeh Charles Johnson,

Secretary.

End Signature

Required Application Forms and Application Fees To Register or Re-Register for TPS

To register or re-register for TPS based on the designation of Somalia, an applicant must submit each of the following two applications:

1. Application for Temporary Protected Status (Form I-821).

  • If you are filing an application for late initial registration, you must pay the fee for the Application for Temporary Protected Status (Form I-821). See 8 CFR 244.2(f)(2) and 244.6 and information on late initial filing on the USCIS TPS Web page at http://www.uscis.gov/​tps.
  • If you are filing an application for re-registration, you do not need to pay the fee for the Application for Temporary Protected Status (Form I-821). See 8 CFR 244.17. and

2. Application for Employment Authorization (Form I-765).

  • If you are applying for late initial registration and want an EAD, you must pay the fee for the Application for Employment Authorization (Form I-765) only if you are age 14 through 65. No fee for the Application for Employment Authorization (Form I-765) is required if you are under the age of 14 or are 66 and older and applying for late initial registration.
  • If you are applying for re-registration, you must pay the fee for the Application for Employment Authorization (Form I-765) only if you want an EAD, regardless of age.
  • You do not pay the fee for the Application for Employment Authorization (Form I-765) if you are not requesting an EAD, regardless of whether you are applying for late initial registration or re-registration.Start Printed Page 31059

You must submit both completed application forms together. If you are unable to pay for the Application for Employment Authorization (Form I-765) and/or biometrics fee, you may apply for a fee waiver by completing a Request for Fee Waiver (Form I-912) or submitting a personal letter requesting a fee waiver, and by providing satisfactory supporting documentation. For more information on the application forms and fees for TPS, please visit the USCIS TPS Web page at http://www.uscis.gov/​tps. Fees for the Application for Temporary Protected Status (Form I-821), the Application for Employment Authorization (Form I-765), and biometric services are also described in 8 CFR 103.7(b)(1)(i).

Biometric Services Fee

Biometrics (such as fingerprints) are required for all applicants 14 years of age or older. Those applicants must submit a biometric services fee. As previously stated, if you are unable to pay for the biometric services fee, you may apply for a fee waiver by completing a Request for Fee Waiver (Form I-912) or by submitting a personal letter requesting a fee waiver, and providing satisfactory supporting documentation. For more information on the biometric services fee, please visit the USCIS Web site at http://www.uscis.gov. If necessary, you may be required to visit an Application Support Center to have your biometrics captured.

Re-Filing a Re-Registration TPS Application After Receiving a Denial of a Fee Waiver Request

USCIS urges all re-registering applicants to file as soon as possible within the 60-day re-registration period so that USCIS can process the applications and issue EADs promptly. Filing early will also allow those applicants who may receive denials of their fee waiver requests to have time to re-file their applications before the re-registration deadline. If, however, an applicant receives a denial of his or her fee waiver request and is unable to re-file by the re-registration deadline, the applicant may still re-file his or her application. This situation will be reviewed to determine whether the applicant has established good cause for late re-registration. However, applicants are urged to refile within 45 days of the date on their USCIS fee waiver denial notice, if at all possible. See INA section 244(c)(3)(C), 8 U.S.C. 1254a(c)(3)(C); 8 CFR 244.17(c). For more information on good cause for late re-registration, visit the USCIS TPS Web page at http://www.uscis.gov/​tps. Note: As previously stated, although a re-registering TPS beneficiary age 14 and older must pay the biometric services fee (but not the initial TPS application fee) when filing a TPS re-registration application, the applicant may decide to wait to request an EAD, and therefore not pay the Application for Employment Authorization (Form I-765) fee, until after USCIS has approved the individual's TPS re-registration, if he or she is eligible. If you choose to do this, you would file the Application for Temporary Protected Status (Form I-821) with the fee and the Application for Employment Authorization (Form I-765) without the fee and without requesting an EAD.

Mailing Information

Mail your application for TPS to the proper address in Table 1.

Table 1—Mailing Addresses

If. . .Mail to. . .
You are applying through the U.S. Postal ServiceUSCIS: Attn: TPS Somalia, P.O. Box 6943, Chicago, IL 60680-6943.
You are using a non-U.S. Postal Service delivery serviceUSCIS: Attn: TPS Somalia, 131 S. Dearborn, 3rd Floor, Chicago, IL 60603-5517.

If you were granted TPS by an Immigration Judge (IJ) or the Board of Immigration Appeals (BIA), and you wish to request an EAD, or are re-registering for the first time following a grant of TPS by an IJ or the BIA, please mail your application to the appropriate address in Table 1. Upon receiving a Notice of Action (Form I-797) from USCIS, please send an email to the appropriate USCIS Service Center handling your application providing the receipt number and stating that you submitted a re-registration and/or request for an EAD based on an IJ/BIA grant of TPS. Upon receiving a Notice of Action (Form I-797) from USCIS, please send an email to TPSijgrant.vsc@uscis.dhs.gov with the receipt number and state that you submitted a re-registration and/or request for an EAD based on an IJ/BIA grant of TPS. You can find detailed information on what further information you need to email and the email addresses on the USCIS TPS Web page at http://www.uscis.gov/​tps.

E-Filing

You cannot electronically file your application when re-registering or submitting a late initial registration for Somalia TPS. Please mail your application to the mailing address listed in Table 1.

Employment Authorization Document (EAD)

May I request an interim EAD at my local USCIS office?

No. USCIS will not issue interim EADs to TPS applicants and re-registrants at local offices.

Am I eligible to receive an automatic 6-month extension of my current EAD through March 17, 2016?

No. Previously issued EADs will not be automatically extended. You must apply for a new EAD during the 60-day re- registration period. Failure to file your TPS application during the re-registration period without good cause may result in gaps in work authorization. DHS strongly encourages you to apply as early as possible within the re-registration period to avoid a gap in your employment authorization.

When hired, what documentation may I show to my employer as proof of employment authorization and identity when completing Employment Eligibility Verification (Form I-9)?

You can find a list of acceptable document choices on the “Lists of Acceptable Documents” for Employment Eligibility Verification (Form I-9). You can find additional detailed information on the USCIS I-9 Central Web page at http://www.uscis.gov/​I-9Central. Employers are required to verify the identity and employment authorization of all new employees by using Employment Eligibility Verification (Form I-9). Within 3 days of hire, an employee must present proof of identity and employment authorization to his or her employer.

You may present any document from List A (reflecting both your identity and employment authorization) or one Start Printed Page 31060document from List B (reflecting identity) together with one document from List C (reflecting employment authorization). You may present an acceptable receipt for List A, List B, or List C documents as described in the Form I-9 Instructions. An EAD is an acceptable document under “List A.” Employers may not reject a document based on a future expiration date.

What documentation may I show my employer if I am already employed but my current TPS-related EAD is set to expire?

At the time of expiration, you must present any document from List A or any document from List C on Employment Eligibility Verification (Form I-9) to re-verify employment authorization, or an acceptable List A or List C receipt described in the Form I-9 instructions. Your employer is required to re-verify on Employment Eligibility Verification (Form I-9) the employment authorization of current employees upon the expiration of a TPS-related EAD. Your employer should use either section 3 of the Employment Eligibility Verification (Form I-9) originally completed for the employee or, if this section has already been completed or if the version of Employment Eligibility Verification (Form I-9) is no longer valid, complete section 3 of a new Employment Eligibility Verification (Form I-9) using the most current version. Note that your employer may not specify which List A or List C document employees must present, and cannot reject an acceptable receipt.

USCIS anticipates that it will be able to process and issue new EADs for existing TPS Somalia beneficiaries before their current EADs expire on September 17, 2015. However, re-registering beneficiaries are encouraged to file as early as possible within the 60-day re-registration period to help ensure that they receive their EADs promptly.

Can my employer require that I produce any other documentation to prove my status, such as proof of my Somali citizenship?

No. When completing Employment Eligibility Verification (Form I-9), including re-verifying employment authorization, employers must accept any documentation that appears on the “Lists of Acceptable Documents” for Employment Eligibility Verification (Form I-9) that reasonably appears to be genuine and that relates to you or an acceptable List A, List B, or List C receipt. Employers may not request documentation that does not appear on the “Lists of Acceptable Documents.” Therefore, employers may not request proof of Somali citizenship when completing Employment Eligibility Verification (Form I-9) for new hires or reverifying the employment authorization of current employees. Refer to the Note to Employees section of this Notice for important information about your rights if your employer rejects lawful documentation, requires additional documentation, or otherwise discriminates against you based on your citizenship or immigration status, or your national origin.

Note to All Employers

Employers are reminded that the laws requiring proper employment eligibility verification and prohibiting unfair immigration-related employment practices remain in full force. This Notice does not supersede or in any way limit applicable employment verification rules and policy guidance, including those rules setting forth reverification requirements. For general questions about the employment eligibility verification process, employers may call USCIS at 888-464-4218 (TTY 877-875-6028) or email USCIS at I-9Central@dhs.gov. Calls and emails are accepted in English and many other languages. For questions about avoiding discrimination during the employment eligibility verification process, employers may also call the U.S. Department of Justice, Civil Rights Division, Office of Special Counsel for Immigration-Related Unfair Employment Practices (OSC) Employer Hotline at 800-255-8155 (TTY 800-237-2515), which offers language interpretation in numerous languages, or email OSC at osccrt@usdoj.gov.

Note to Employees

For general questions about the employment eligibility verification process, employees may call USCIS at 888-897-7781 (TTY 877-875-6028) or email at I-9Central@dhs.gov. Calls are accepted in English and many other languages. Employees or applicants may also call the U.S. Department of Justice, Civil Rights Division, Office of Special Counsel for Immigration-Related Unfair Employment Practices (OSC) Worker Information Hotline at 800-255-7688 (TTY 800-237-2515) for information regarding employment discrimination based upon citizenship status, immigration status, or national origin, or for information regarding discrimination related to Employment Eligibility Verification (Form I-9) and E-Verify. The OSC Worker Information Hotline provides language interpretation in numerous languages.

To comply with the law, employers must accept any document or combination of documents from the Lists of Acceptable Documents if the documentation reasonably appears to be genuine and to relate to the employee, or an acceptable List A, List B, or List C receipt described in the Employment Eligibility Verification (Form I-9) Instructions. Employers may not require extra or additional documentation beyond what is required for Employment Eligibility Verification (Form I-9) completion. Further, employers participating in E-Verify who receive an E-Verify case result of “Tentative Nonconfirmation” (TNC) must promptly inform employees of the TNC and give such employees an opportunity to contest the TNC. A TNC case result means that the information entered into E-Verify from Employment Eligibility Verification (Form I-9) differs from records available to DHS or the Social Security Administration.

Employers may not terminate, suspend, delay training, withhold pay, lower pay or take any adverse action against an employee based on the employee's decision to contest a TNC or because the case is still pending with E-Verify. A Final Nonconfirmation (FNC) case result is received when E-Verify cannot verify an employee's employment eligibility. An employer may terminate employment based on a case result of FNC. Work-authorized employees who receive an FNC may call USCIS for assistance at 888-897-7781 (TTY 877-875-6028). An employee that believes he or she was discriminated against by an employer in the E-Verify process based on citizenship or immigration status, or based on national origin, may contact OSC's Worker Information Hotline at 800-255-7688 (TTY 800-237-2515). Additional information about proper nondiscriminatory Employment Eligibility Verification (Form I-9) and E-Verify procedures is available on the OSC Web site at http://www.justice.gov/​crt/​about/​osc/​ and the USCIS Web site at http://www.dhs.gov/​E-verify.

Note Regarding Federal, State, and Local Government Agencies (Such as Departments of Motor Vehicles)

While Federal Government agencies must follow the guidelines laid out by the Federal Government, State and local government agencies establish their own rules and guidelines when granting certain benefits. Each State may have different laws, requirements, and determinations about what documents you need to provide to prove eligibility for certain benefits. Whether you are applying for a Federal, State, or local Start Printed Page 31061government benefit, you may need to provide the government agency with documents that show you are a TPS beneficiary and/or show you are authorized to work based on TPS. Examples are:

(1) Your unexpired EAD;

(2) A copy of your Application for Temporary Protected Status Notice of Action (Form I-797) for this re-registration; and/or

(3) A copy of your past or current Application for Temporary Protected Status Approval Notice (Form I-797), if you received one from USCIS.

Check with the government agency regarding which document(s) the agency will accept. You may also provide the agency with a copy of this Federal Register Notice.

Some benefit-granting agencies use the USCIS Systematic Alien Verification for Entitlements Program (SAVE) to verify the current immigration status of applicants for public benefits. If such an agency has denied your application based solely or in part on a SAVE response, the agency must offer you the opportunity to appeal the decision in accordance with the agency's procedures. If the agency has received and acted upon or will act upon a SAVE verification and you do not believe the response is correct, you may make an InfoPass appointment for an in-person interview at a local USCIS office. Detailed information on how to make corrections, make an appointment, or submit a written request to correct records under the Freedom of Information Act can be found at the SAVE Web site at http://www.uscis.gov/​save, then by choosing “How to Correct Your Records” from the menu on the right.

End Supplemental Information

Footnotes

1.  As of March 1, 2003, in accordance with section 1517 of title XV of the Homeland Security Act of 2002, Public Law 107-296, 116 Stat. 2135, any reference to the Attorney General in a provision of the INA describing functions transferred from the Department of Justice to DHS “shall be deemed to refer to the Secretary” of Homeland Security. See 6 U.S.C. 557 (codifying section 1517 of the Homeland Security Act of 2002).

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[FR Doc. 2015-13094 Filed 5-29-15; 8:45 am]

BILLING CODE 9111-97-P