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Statutes of Liberty: TPS Ethiopia, a very merry Christmas

This sponsored column is by Law Office of James Montana PLLC. All questions about it should be directed to James Montana, Esq., Doran Shemin, Esq., and Laura Lorenzo, Esq., practicing attorneys at The Law Office of James Montana PLLC, an immigration-focused law firm located in Falls Church, Virginia. The legal information given here is general in nature. If you want legal advice, contact us for an appointment.

Our august founder, getting into the true spirit of Christmas.

We have great news for the Ethiopian community here in Washington, D.C.: TPS Ethiopia has opened.

We know, from long experience, that it always makes sense to find a lawyer rather than applying for immigration benefits on your own. We also know that many people will end up applying for TPS-Ethiopia without benefit of counsel. Therefore, in this article, we want to provide information about the process of applying for TPS-Ethiopia. Please use this as intended: as a reference, not as a substitute for an attorney.

Who Can Apply

Ethiopian citizens who have been both continuously resident since October 20, 2022 and continuously physically present since December 12, 2022 (these are distinct concepts!) can apply for TPS.

Should you apply for TPS if you already have a green card? With rare exceptions: No.
Should you apply for TPS if you are already a naturalized American citizen? Absolutely not.
Should you apply for TPS  if you have a pending case in immigration court? Or have a prior removal order? Consult an attorney.

When to Apply

The application window opened on December 12, 2022 and ends of June 12, 2024. USCIS encourages applicants to apply as soon as possible within the application window. In our experience, this isn’t a matter in which seconds count; it’s best to put together your application with care. It is important to file before June 12, 2024, though, because late-filed TPS applications are frequently denied.

How to Apply

The instructions are 18 pages long. Follow them carefully.

In general, you’ll need to submit copies of documents showing your identity (e.g., a passport ID page), the date that you entered the United States (e.g., a copy of Form I-94), and evidence that you meet the continuous residence and physical presence requirements.

Think about the continuous residence and physical presence requirements this way: You’ve been accused of not being in the United States; how would you disprove the accusation? You’d submit evidence! Such evidence might include pay stubs, rent payment receipts, copies of your income tax returns for the relevant period, medical or school records, utility bills, and affidavits from credible witnesses.

When you apply for TPS, you can also request employment authorization. (You don’t have to — asking for employment authorization costs extra money; see the table below for how much.)

How Much To Pay

The current fees (which may change!) are as follows:

Want to apply for TPS-Ethiopia with our office? Let us know! You can call us anytime at (888) 389-8655. Questions about TPS-Ethiopia? Ask away. We appreciate questions and will do our best to respond.

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