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Notice

Extension of the Designation of Haiti for Temporary Protected Status

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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 Haiti for Temporary Protected Status (TPS) for 6 months, from July 23, 2017, through January 22, 2018. The Secretary has determined that a limited, 6-month extension is warranted because, although Haiti has made significant progress in recovering from the January 2010 earthquake that prompted its initial designation, conditions in Haiti supporting its designation for TPS continue to be met at this time. The Secretary is committed to making TPS determinations that fully comply with the Immigration and Nationality Act and the intent of the program to provide a temporary form of immigration relief and protection to eligible individuals who cannot return to their home country due to ongoing armed conflict, environmental disasters, or other extraordinary and temporary conditions. This Notice also sets forth procedures necessary for nationals of Haiti (or aliens having no nationality who last habitually resided in Haiti) to re-register for TPS and to apply for renewal of their Employment Authorization Documents (EAD) with U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS). USCIS will issue EADs with a January 22, 2018 expiration date to eligible Haiti TPS beneficiaries who timely re-register and apply for EADs under this extension. Provided a Haiti TPS beneficiary timely re-registers and properly files an application for an EAD during the 60-day re-registration period, his or her employment authorization will be automatically extended for an additional period not to exceed 180 days from the date the current EAD expires, i.e., January 18, 2018. See 8 CFR 274a.13(d)(1). TPS beneficiaries are reminded that, prior to January 22, 2018, the Secretary will re-evaluate the designation for Haiti and decide anew whether extension, redesignation, or termination is warranted. During this period, beneficiaries are encouraged to prepare for their return to Haiti in the event Haiti's designation is not extended again, including requesting updated travel documents from the Government of Haiti.

DATES:

Extension of Designation of Haiti for TPS: The 6-month extension of the TPS designation of Haiti is effective July 23, 2017, and will remain in effect through January 22, 2018. The 60-day re-registration period runs from May 24, 2017 through July 24, 2017.

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FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:

  • 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 Haiti's TPS extension by selecting “Haiti” from the menu on the left side of the TPS Web page.
  • You can also contact Guillermo Roman-Riefkohl, TPS Operations Program Manager, at the Waivers and Temporary Services Branch, Service Center Operations Directorate, U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services, Department of Homeland Security, 20 Massachusetts Avenue NW., Washington, 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 inquiries.

  • 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.
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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

IJ—Immigration Judge

INA—Immigration and Nationality Act

IER—U.S. Department of Justice Civil Rights Division, Immigrant and Employee Rights Section

SAVE—USCIS Systematic Alien Verification for Entitlements Program

Secretary—Secretary of Homeland Security

TNC—Tentative Nonconfirmation

TPS—Temporary Protected Status

TTY—Text Telephone

USCIS—U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services

The extension allows TPS beneficiaries to maintain TPS through January 22, 2018, so long as they continue to meet the eligibility requirements for TPS. The Secretary has determined that an extension is warranted because the conditions in Haiti that prompted the TPS designation, while significantly improved, continue to be met. There continue to be extraordinary and temporary conditions in Haiti that prevent Haitian nationals (or aliens having no nationality who last habitually resided in Haiti) from returning to Haiti in safety. The Secretary also has determined that permitting such Haitian nationals to continue to remain in the United States, at this time, is not contrary to the national interest of the United States.

TPS beneficiaries are reminded that, prior to the conclusion of this six-month Start Printed Page 23831extension period, the Secretary will re-evaluate Haiti's TPS designation and decide anew whether extension, redesignation, or termination is warranted. Because the designation of TPS was intended by Congress to be temporary in nature, and because the Government of Haiti has expressed a desire for its nationals to return to Haiti, the Secretary will fully re-evaluate the country conditions and any other factors he deems necessary to determine whether Haiti's TPS designation should continue. Among those factors, the Secretary will consider whether permitting Haitian nationals to remain in the United States is contrary to the national interest of the United States.

Thus, during this limited six-month period, beneficiaries are encouraged to prepare for their return to Haiti, including requesting updated travel documents from the Government of Haiti. The Secretary is committed to working with the Government of Haiti to ensure an orderly transition should Haiti's TPS designation be terminated at the conclusion of this limited six-month extension.

Re-registration is limited to persons who have previously registered for TPS under the designation of Haiti and whose applications have been granted. Certain nationals of Haiti (or aliens having no nationality who last habitually resided in Haiti) 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 in 8 CFR 244.2(f)(2), which are also described on the TPS Web page at https://www.uscis.gov/​humanitarian/​temporary-protected-status, and (2) all TPS eligibility criteria (including continuous residence in the United States since January 12, 2011, and continuous physical presence in the United States since July 23, 2011).

For individuals who have already been granted TPS under Haiti's designation, the 60-day re-registration period runs from May 24, 2017 through July 24, 2017. USCIS will issue EADs with a January 22, 2018 expiration date to eligible Haiti TPS beneficiaries who timely re-register and apply for EADs under this extension. Given the timeframes involved with processing TPS re-registration applications, DHS recognizes that not all re-registrants will receive new EADs before their current EADs expire on July 22, 2017. But provided a Haiti TPS beneficiary timely re-registers and properly files an application for an EAD during the 60-day re-registration period, his or her employment authorization will be automatically extended for an additional period not to exceed 180 days from the date the current EAD expires, i.e., January 18, 2018. This notice explains how TPS beneficiaries and their employers may determine whether a beneficiary's employment authorization has been automatically extended and the impact on the Employment Eligibility Verification (Form I-9) and E-Verify processes. There are approximately 46,000 current Haiti TPS beneficiaries who are expected to file for re-registration under the extension.

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 lawful 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 Haiti designated for TPS?

On January 21, 2010, the Secretary designated Haiti for TPS based on extraordinary and temporary conditions within the country, specifically the effects of the 7.0-magnitude earthquake that occurred on January 12, 2010. See Designation of Haiti for Temporary Protected Status, 75 FR 3476 (Jan. 21, 2010). In 2011, the Secretary both extended Haiti's designation and redesignated Haiti for TPS for 18 months through January 22, 2013. See Extension and Redesignation of Haiti for Temporary Protected Status, 76 FR 29000 (May 19, 2011). This announcement is the fourth extension of TPS for Haiti since the 2011 redesignation. The Secretary last extended Haiti's designation on August 25, 2015. See Extension of the Designation of Haiti for Temporary Protected Status, 80 FR 51582 (Aug. 25, 2015).

What authority does the Secretary of Homeland Security have to extend the designation of Haiti 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 the designated country). 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 U.S. 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 following this review the Secretary determines that a foreign state continues to meet the conditions for TPS designation (or makes no determination at all), the designation must be extended for an additional period of 6 months or, in the Secretary's discretion, for an additional 12 or 18 months. See INA section 244(b)(3)(A), (C), 8 U.S.C. 1254a(b)(3)(A), (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 Haiti through January 22, 2018?

Since the last extension was announced, DHS has reviewed conditions in Haiti. Based on this review and after consulting with DOS, the Secretary has determined that a limited, 6-month extension is warranted because, although Haiti has made significant progress in recovering from the January 2010 earthquake that prompted its initial designation, conditions in Haiti supporting its designation for TPS persist.Start Printed Page 23832

Although lingering effects of the 2010 earthquake remain, Haiti has made significant progress in addressing issues specific to the earthquake, as its economy continues to recover and grow. For example, 96% of people displaced by the earthquake and living in internally displaced person (IDP) camps have left those camps. Over 98% of the IDP camps have closed. However, over 55,000 Haitians who lost their homes in the earthquake are still living in 31 camps for internally displaced persons without viable options to leave. Gender-based violence in these camps continues to be a serious concern, and personal security is a serious and pervasive issue. Some people who were displaced by the earthquake, although no longer in camps, have moved back to unsafe homes or relocated to informal settlements located in hazardous areas. However, demonstrating improvement in Haiti's security situation, in March 2017, the United Nations announced that the mandate of the United Nations peacekeeping mission in Haiti will end in October 2017, to be replaced by a new police-only mission focused on rule of law.

Hurricane Matthew made landfall in Haiti on October 4, 2016, causing extensive damage to crops, housing, livestock, and infrastructure across Haiti's southwest peninsula. The Government of Haiti confirmed 546 fatalities from the storm, and over 175,000 people were left without housing. The most significant impact from the storm was concentrated in 3 of Haiti's 10 departments—Nippes, Grand'Anse, and Sud. Minimal damage was inflicted on the rest of the country, including the capital, Port-au-Prince, and the second largest city, Cap-Haïtien. Still, significant losses of crops and livestock in the regions damaged by Hurricane Matthew impacted the entire country.

Heavy rains in late April 2017 caused flooding and landslides in South, South East, Grand'Anse, and Nippes departments, with South department most impacted. At least four people were killed, nearly 10,000 homes may have been damaged, and at least 350,000 people may have been affected. According to a Haitian government official, an estimated 80% of the spring harvest in South department may have been destroyed. The damage from Hurricane Matthew and the recent heavy rains are compounding the existing food insecurity experienced by an estimated 3.2 million people (approximately 30 percent of the population) in September 2016.

Haiti's weak public health system is further strained due to an ongoing cholera epidemic, whose inception was traced to U.N. peacekeepers assisting with earthquake recovery. Since October 2010, close to 800,000 Haitians have contracted cholera, and nearly 10,000 people have died from the disease. However, progress has been made in combatting cholera, and Haiti has made some progress in the health sector in recent years. Nevertheless, Haiti faces longstanding public health challenges, where 40% of the population lacked access to basic health services before the 2010 earthquake. As of 2016, this figure remains the same—40% of the population lacks access to fundamental health and nutrition services. While the lack of access to safe drinking water and Haiti's weak sanitation infrastructure remain significant concerns, these are not new problems. Extreme poverty, corruption, and low levels of education in Haiti challenge its resilience and have contributed to the government's longstanding inability to adequately provide for the security, health, and safety of its citizenry.

Based upon this review and after consultation with appropriate U.S. Government agencies, the Secretary has determined that:

  • The conditions that prompted the July 23, 2011 redesignation of Haiti for TPS continue to be met. See INA section 244(b)(3)(A) and (C), 8 U.S.C. 1254a(b)(3)(A) and (C).
  • There continue to be extraordinary and temporary conditions in Haiti that prevent Haitian nationals (or aliens having no nationality who last habitually resided in Haiti) from returning to Haiti 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 Haitians (or aliens having no nationality who last habitually resided in Haiti) 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 Haiti for TPS should be extended for a 6-month period from July 23, 2017, through January 22, 2018. See INA section 244(b)(3)(C), 8 U.S.C. 1254a(b)(3)(C).
  • It is in the best interest of TPS beneficiaries to prepare for their return to Haiti in the event that Haiti's TPS designation is not extended again, including requesting updated travel documents from the Government of Haiti.

Notice of Extension of the TPS Designation of Haiti

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 U.S. Government agencies, that the conditions that prompted the redesignation of Haiti for TPS on July 23, 2011, 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 existing designation of Haiti for TPS for 6 months, from July 23, 2017, through January 22, 2018. See INA section 244(b)(1)(C) and (b)(2), 8 U.S.C. 1254a(b)(1)(C) and (b)(2).

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John F. Kelly,

Secretary.

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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 Haiti, 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.

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 (or request a fee waiver) 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 age 66 or older and applying for late initial registration.
  • If you are applying for re-registration, you must pay the fee (or request a fee waiver) 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.
  • If you do not want to request an EAD now, you may also file Form I-765 later to request an EAD, and pay the fee (or request a fee waiver), provided that Start Printed Page 23833you still have TPS or a pending TPS application. Your EAD application will be considered timely filed even if the date on your current TPS-related EAD has expired. But until you timely re-register and properly file an EAD application, your current employment authorization will end on July 22, 2017. Accordingly, you must also properly file your EAD application during the 60-day re-registration period in order for your current employment authorization to be automatically extended for 180 days (i.e., Janaury 18, 2018). You are strongly encouraged to file your EAD application as early as possible during the 60-day re-registration period to avoid lapses in your employment authorization.

You must submit both completed application forms together, even if you are not currently requesting an EAD. If you are unable to pay for the Application for Employment Authorization (Form I-765) and/or biometric services 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 see the Instructions to Form I-821 or visit the USCIS Web site at http://www.uscis.gov. If necessary, you may be required to visit an Application Support Center (ASC) to have your biometrics captured. In such case, USCIS will send you an ASC scheduling notice.

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 re-file 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 or 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 live in FloridaFor U.S. Postal Service:
U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services, P.O. Box 4464, Chicago, IL 60680.
For FedEx, UPS, and DHL deliveries:
U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services, Attn: Haiti TPS, 131 S. Dearborn—3rd Floor, Chicago, IL 60603.
You live in the State of New YorkFor U.S. Postal Service:
U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services, P.O. Box 660167, Dallas, TX 75266.
For FedEx, UPS, and DHL deliveries:
U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services, Attn: Haiti TPS, 2501 S. State Highway, 121 Business Suite 400, Lewisville, TX 75067.
You live in any other stateFor U.S. Postal Service:
U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services, P.O. Box 24047, Phoenix, AZ 85074.
For FedEx, UPS, and DHL deliveries:
U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services, Attn: Haiti TPS, 1820 E. Skyharbor Circle S, Suite 100, Phoenix, AZ 85034.

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. When submitting a re-registration application and/or requesting an EAD based on an IJ/BIA grant of TPS, please include a copy of the IJ or BIA order granting you TPS with your application. This will aid in the verification of your grant of TPS and processing of your application, as USCIS may not have received records of your grant of TPS by either the IJ or the BIA.

Supporting Documents

What type of basic supporting documentation must I submit?

To meet the basic eligibility requirements for TPS, you must submit evidence that you:

  • Are a national of Haiti or an alien having no nationality who last habitually resided in Haiti. Such documents may include a copy of your Start Printed Page 23834passport if available, other documentation issued by the Government of Haiti showing your nationality (e.g., national identity card, official travel documentation issued by the Government of Haiti), and/or your birth certificate with English translation accompanied by photo identification. USCIS will also consider certain forms of secondary evidence supporting your Haitian nationality. If the evidence presented is insufficient for USCIS to make a determination as to your nationality, USCIS may request additional evidence. If you cannot provide a passport, birth certificate with photo identification, or a national identity document with your photo or fingerprint, you must submit an affidavit showing proof of your unsuccessful efforts to obtain such documents and affirming that you are a national of Haiti. However, please be aware that an interview with an immigration officer will be required if you do not present any documentary proof of identity or nationality or if USCIS otherwise requests a personal appearance. See 8 CFR 103.2(b)(9), 244.9(a)(1);
  • Have continuously resided in the United States since January 12, 2011. See INA section 244(c)(1)(A)(ii); 8 U.S.C. 1254a(c)(1)(A)(ii); 8 CFR 244.9(a)(2); and
  • Have been continuously physically present in the United States since June 23, 2011. See INA sections 244(b)(2)(A), (c)(1)(A)(i); 8 U.S.C. 1254a(b)(2)(A), (c)(1)(A)(i).

The filing instructions on the Application for Temporary Protected Status (Form I-821) list all the documents needed to establish basic eligibility for TPS. You may also find information on the acceptable documentation and other requirements for applying for TPS on the USCIS Web site at www.uscis.gov/​tps under “Haiti.”

Do I need to submit additional supporting documentation?

If one or more of the questions listed in Part 4, Question 2 of the Application for Temporary Protected Status (Form I-821) applies to you, then you must submit an explanation on a separate sheet(s) of paper and/or additional documentation. Depending on the nature of the question(s) you are addressing, additional documentation alone may suffice, but usually a written explanation will also be needed.

EAD

How can I obtain information on the status of my EAD request?

To get case status information about your TPS application, including the status of a request for an EAD, you can check Case Status Online at http://www.uscis.gov, or call the USCIS National Customer Service Center at 800-375-5283 (TTY 800-767-1833). If your Application for Employment Authorization (Form I-765) has been pending for more than 90 days and you still need assistance, you may request an EAD inquiry appointment with USCIS by using the InfoPass system at https://infopass.uscis.gov. However, we strongly encourage you first to check Case Status Online or call the USCIS National Customer Service Center for assistance before making an InfoPass appointment.

Am I eligible to receive an automatic extension of my current EAD through January 18, 2018?

Provided that you currently have a Haiti TPS-based EAD, you may be eligible to have your employment authorization automatically extended to January 18, 2018 if you:

  • Are a national of Haiti (or an alien having no nationality who last habitually resided in Haiti);
  • Received an EAD under the designation of Haiti for TPS;
  • Have an EAD with a marked expiration date of July 22, 2017, bearing the notation “A-12” or “C-19” on the face of the card under “Category”;
  • Timely re-registered for TPS during the 60-day re-registration period; and
  • Properly filed an application for an EAD during the 60-day re-registration period.

Although you may be eligible to automatically extend your employment authorization through January 18, 2018, you must timely re-register for TPS in accordance with the procedures described in this Notice if you would like to maintain your TPS. You are strongly encouraged to file your EAD renewal application as early as possible during the 60-day re-registration period to avoid lapses 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 Form I-9. You can find additional detailed information about Form I-9 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 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 (which reflect both identity and employment authorization), or one document from List B (which reflects your identity) together with one document from List C (which reflects employment authorization), or 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.

If your EAD has an expiration date of July 22, 2017, and states “A-12” or “C-19” under “Category,” and you timely filed an EAD renewal application during the 60-day re-registration period, you may choose to present your EAD to your employer together with the Form I-797C Notice of Action (showing the qualifying eligibility category of either A12 or C19) as proof of identity and employment authorization for Form I-9 through January 18, 2018 (see the subsection titled “How do my employer and I complete the Employment Eligibility Verification (Form I-9) on the basis of automatically extended employment authorization for a new job?” for further information). To minimize confusion over this extension at the time of hire, you should explain to your employer that your employment authorization has been automatically extended through January 18, 2018. As an alternative to presenting evidence of your automatically extended employment authorization, you may choose to present any other acceptable document from List A, a combination of one selection from List B and one selection from List C, or a valid receipt.

What documentation may I show my employer to complete Employment Verification (Form I-9) if I am already employed but my current TPS-related EAD is set to expire?

Even though you may be eligible to have your employment authorization automatically extended, your employer will need to ask you about your continued employment authorization once July 22, 2017, is reached to meet its responsibilities for Form I-9. Your employer will need a new document to re-verify your employment authorization. Once presented, you and your employer must make corrections to the employment authorization Start Printed Page 23835expiration dates in Section 1 and Section 2 of Form I-9 (see the subsection titled “What corrections should my current employer and I make to Employment Eligibility Verification (Form I-9) if my employment authorization has been automatically extended?” for further information). In addition, you may also show this Federal Register Notice to your employer to explain what to do for Form I-9.

If you file your Form I-765 to renew your current EAD, and you receive a USCIS receipt notice (Form I-797C) stating that your current “A-12” or “C-19” coded EAD is automatically extended for 180 days, you may show that receipt notice to your employer along with your EAD to confirm automatic extension of employment authorization through January 18, 2018, unless your TPS has been finally withdrawn or your request for TPS has been finally denied. To avoid delays in receiving the Form I-797C and a lapse in your employment authorization, you should file your EAD renewal application as early as possible during the re-registration period.

By January 18, 2018, the expiration date of the automatic extension, your employer must re-verify your employment authorization. At that time, you must present any document from List A or any document from List C on 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 should complete either Section 3 of the Form I-9 originally completed for you or, if this section has already been completed or if the version of Form I-9 has expired (check the date in the bottom left-hand corner of the form), complete Section 3 of a new 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.

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

No. When completing Form I-9, including re-verifying employment authorization, employers must accept any documentation that appears on the “Lists of Acceptable Documents” for 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 Haitian citizenship or proof of re-registration for TPS when completing Form I-9 for new hires or re-verifying the employment authorization of current employees. If the expired EAD with category A12 or C19 is presented with the Form I-797C Notice of Action as described herein, an employer should accept this document combination as a valid List A document so long as the EAD reasonably appears to be genuine and to relate to the employee. 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.

How do my employer and I complete Employment Eligibility Verification (Form I-9) on the basis of automatically extended employment authorization for a new job?

To evidence the automatic extension of your employment authorization, you may present your expired EAD with category A12 or C19 in combination with the Form I-797C Notice of Action showing that the EAD renewal application was timely filed and that the qualifying eligibility category is either A12 or C19. This document combination is considered an unexpired Employment Authorization Document (Form I-766) under List A. When completing Form I-9 for a new job before January 18, 2018, you and your employer should do the following:

1. For Section 1, you should:

a. Check “An alien authorized to work until” and enter the date that is 180 days from the date your current EAD expires (January 18, 2018) as the “employment authorized until mm/dd/yyyy” date; and

b. Enter your Alien Number/USCIS number or A-Number where indicated (your EAD or other document from DHS will have your USCIS Number or A-Number printed on it; the USCIS number is the same as your A-Number without the A prefix).

2. When completing Section 2, employers should:

a. Determine if the EAD is auto-extended for 180 days by ensuring:

  • It is in category A12 or C19;
  • the “received date” on Form I-797 is on or before the end of the 60-day re-registration period stated in this Notice; and
  • the category code on the EAD is the same category code on Form I-797C, noting that employers should consider category codes A12 and C19 to be the same category code;

b. Write in the document title;

c. Enter the issuing authority;

d. Provide the document number; and

e. Insert the date that is 180 days from the date the current EAD expires (January 18, 2018).

By January 18, 2018, employers must re-verify the employee's employment authorization in Section 3 of the Form I-9.

What corrections should my current employer and I make to Employment Eligibility Verification (Form I-9) if my employment authorization has been automatically extended?

If you are an existing employee who presented a TPS-related EAD that was valid when you first started your job and your employment authorization has now been automatically extended when you timely filed a new application for employment authorization during the 60-day re-registration period, you may present your expired EAD with category A12 or C19 in combination with the Form I-797C Notice of Action. The Form I-797C should show that the EAD renewal application was timely filed and that the qualifying eligibility category is either A12 or C19. Your employer may need to re-inspect your current EAD if your employer does not have a copy of the EAD on file. You and your employer should correct your previously completed Form I-9 as follows:

1. For Section 1, you should:

a. Draw a line through the expiration date in Section 1;

b. Write the date that is 180 days from the date your current EAD expires (January 18, 2018) above the previous date (July 22, 2017); and

c. Initial and date the correction in the margin of Section 1.

2. For Section 2, employers should:

a. Determine if the EAD is auto-extended for 180 days by ensuring:

  • It is in category A12 or C19;
  • the “received date” on Form I-797 is on or before the end of the 60-day re-registration period stated in this Notice; and
  • the category code on the EAD is the same category code on Form I-797C, noting that employers should consider category codes A12 and C19 to be the same category code;

b. Draw a line through the expiration date written in Section 2;

c. Write the date that is 180 days from the date the employee's current EAD expires (January 18, 2018) above the previous date (July 22, 2017); and

d. Initial and date the correction in the margin of Section 2.

Note:

This is not considered a reverification; do not complete Section 3 Start Printed Page 23836until either the 180-day extension has ended or the employee presents a new document to show continued employment authorization, whichever is sooner. By January 18, 2018, when the employee's automatically extended employment authorization ends, employers must re-verify the employee's employment authorization in Section 3.

If I am an employer enrolled in E-Verify, what do I do when I receive a “Work Authorization Documents Expiration” alert for an automatically extended EAD?

E-Verify automated the verification process for employees whose TPS-related EAD was automatically extended in a Federal Register Notice. If you have an employee who is a TPS beneficiary who provided a TPS-related EAD when he or she first started working for you, you will receive a “Work Authorization Documents Expiring” case alert when the auto-extension period for this EAD is about to expire. After completing the Form I-9 in accordance with the instructions above, the employer may create a case in E-Verify for a new employee using the information provided on Form I-9 and Form I-797C. The receipt number entered as the document number on Form I-9 should be entered into the document number field in E-Verify. By January 18, 2018, employment authorization must be re-verified in Section 3. Employers should not use E-Verify for reverification.

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 (Form I-9 and E-Verify), employers may also call the U.S. Department of Justice's Civil Rights Division, Immigrant and Employee Rights Section (IER), formerly the Office of Special Counsel for Immigration-Related Unfair Employment Practices, Employer Hotline at 800-255-8155 (TTY 800-237-2515), which offers language interpretation in numerous languages, or email IER at IER@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, Spanish, and many other languages. Employees or applicants may also call the IER Worker Hotline at 800-255-7688 (TTY 800-237-2515) for information regarding employment discrimination based upon citizenship, immigration status, or national origin, including discrimination related to Employment Eligibility Verification (Form I-9) and E-Verify. The IER Worker 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 as 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 Federal or state government records.

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). For more information about E-Verify related discrimination or to report an employer for discrimination in the E-Verify process based on citizenship or immigration status, or based on national origin, contact IER's Worker 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 IER Web site at https://www.justice.gov/​ier 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 government 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 of such documents are:

(1) Your current EAD;

(2) A copy of this Federal Register Notice;

(3) A copy of your receipt notice (Form I-797C) for your application to renew your current EAD providing an automatic extension of your current expired or expiring EAD;

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

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

Check with the government agency regarding which document(s) the agency will accept.

Some benefit-granting agencies use the USCIS Systematic Alien Verification for Entitlements (SAVE) program to confirm the current immigration status of applicants for public benefits. In most cases, SAVE provides an automated electronic response to benefit-granting agencies within seconds, but, occasionally, verification can be delayed. You can check the status of your SAVE verification by using CaseCheck at the following link: https://save.uscis.gov/​casecheck/​, then by clicking the “Check Your Case” button. CaseCheck is a free service that lets you follow the progress of your SAVE verification using your date of birth and one immigration identifier number. If 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 Start Printed Page 23837accordance 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 on the SAVE Web site at http://www.uscis.gov/​save, then by choosing “For Benefits Applicants” from the menu on the left, selecting “Save Resources,” followed by “SAVE Fact Sheet for Benefit Applicants.”

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 the Homeland Security Act of 2002, title XV, section 1517).

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[FR Doc. 2017-10749 Filed 5-23-17; 8:45 am]

BILLING CODE 9111-97-P