[Federal Register Volume 78, Number 6 (Wednesday, January 9, 2013)]
[Notices]
[Pages 1866-1872]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Printing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2013-00051]


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DEPARTMENT OF HOMELAND SECURITY

U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services

[CIS No. 2527-12; DHS Docket No. USCIS-2012-0014]
RIN 1615-ZB17


Extension and Redesignation of South Sudan for Temporary 
Protected Status

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

ACTION: Notice.

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SUMMARY: This Notice announces that the Secretary of Homeland Security 
(Secretary) is both extending the existing designation of South Sudan 
for Temporary Protected Status (TPS) for 18 months from May 3, 2013 
through November 2, 2014, and redesignating South Sudan for TPS for 18 
months, effective May 3, 2013 through November 2, 2014.
    The extension allows currently eligible TPS beneficiaries to retain 
TPS through November 2, 2014. The redesignation of South Sudan allows 
additional individuals who have been continuously residing in the 
United States since January 9, 2013, to obtain TPS, if eligible. The 
Secretary has determined that an extension and redesignation are 
warranted because the conditions in South Sudan that prompted the TPS 
designation not only continue to be met but have deteriorated. There 
continues to be a substantial, but temporary, disruption of living 
conditions in South Sudan based upon ongoing armed conflict and 
extraordinary and temporary conditions in that country that prevent 
South Sudanese who now have TPS from returning in safety.
    This Notice also sets forth procedures necessary for nationals of 
South Sudan (or aliens having no nationality who last habitually 
resided in South Sudan) to either: (1) Re-register under the extension 
if they already have TPS and to apply for renewal of their Employment 
Authorization Documents (EADs) with U.S. Citizenship and Immigration 
Services (USCIS) or (2) submit an initial registration application 
under the redesignation and apply for an EAD.
    For individuals who have already been granted TPS under the South 
Sudan designation, the 60-day re-registration period runs from January 
9, 2013 through March 11, 2013. USCIS will issue new EADs with a 
November 2, 2014 expiration date to eligible South Sudanese TPS 
beneficiaries who timely re-register and apply for EADs under this 
extension. Under the redesignation, individuals who currently do not 
have TPS (or an initial TPS application pending) may submit an initial 
TPS application during the 180-day initial registration period that 
runs from January 9, 2013 through July 8, 2013. In addition to 
demonstrating continuous residence in the United States since January 
9, 2013, initial applicants for TPS under this redesignation must 
demonstrate that they have been continuously physically present in the 
United States since May 3, 2013, the effective date of the 
redesignation of South Sudan, before USCIS will be able to grant them 
TPS.
    Some individuals who are TPS beneficiaries under the current 
designation of Sudan may now be nationals of South Sudan, and may now 
qualify for TPS under South Sudan. In addition to regular procedures, 
this

[[Page 1867]]

notice sets forth special procedures for such individuals to register 
and apply for TPS under the South Sudan redesignation.

DATES: Extension of TPS: The 18-month extension of the TPS designation 
of South Sudan is effective May 3, 2013, and will remain in effect 
through November 2, 2014. The 60-day re-registration period runs from 
January 9, 2013 through March 11, 2013.
    Redesignation of South Sudan for TPS: The redesignation of South 
Sudan for TPS is effective May 3, 2013, and will remain in effect 
through November 2, 2014, a period of 18 months. The 180-day initial 
registration period for new applicants under the South Sudan TPS 
redesignation runs from January 9, 2013 through July 8, 2013.

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 and redesignation of South 
Sudan for TPS by selecting ``TPS Designated Country: South Sudan'' 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., 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 only.
     Further information will also be available at local USCIS 
offices upon publication of this Notice.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

Abbreviations and Terms Used in This Document

CPA--Comprehensive Peace Agreement
DHS--Department of Homeland Security
DOS--Department of State
EAD--Employment Authorization Document
Government--U.S. Government
HRW--Human Rights Watch
INA--Immigration and Nationality Act
OCHA--UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs
OSC--U.S. Department of Justice, Office of Special Counsel for 
Immigration-Related Unfair Employment Practices
SAF--Sudan Armed Forces
Secretary--Secretary of Homeland Security
South Sudan--Republic of South Sudan
SPLA--Sudan People's Liberation Army (South Sudan's military)
TPS--Temporary Protected Status
UN--United Nations
UNHCR--UN 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 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 and may obtain work 
authorization, so long as they continue to meet the requirements of TPS 
status.
     TPS beneficiaries may also be granted travel authorization 
as a matter of discretion.
     The granting of TPS does not 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 (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 South Sudan designated for TPS?

    On October 13, 2011, the Secretary designated South Sudan for TPS, 
effective November 3, 2011, based on an ongoing armed conflict and 
extraordinary and temporary conditions within that country. See 76 FR 
63629; sections 244(b)(1)(A) and (C) of the INA, 8 U.S.C. 
1254a(b)(1)(A) and (C). This announcement is the first extension and 
first redesignation of TPS for South Sudan since the designation in 
2011.

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

    Section 244(b)(1) of the INA, 8 U.S.C. 1254a(b)(1), authorizes the 
Secretary, after consultation with appropriate Government agencies, to 
designate a foreign state (or part thereof) for TPS.\1\ The Secretary 
may then grant TPS to eligible nationals of that foreign state (or 
aliens having no nationality who last habitually resided in that 
state). See section 244(a)(1)(A) of the INA, 8 U.S.C. 1254a(a)(1)(A).
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    \1\ As of March 1, 2003, in accordance with section 1517 of 
title XV of the Homeland Security Act of 2002 (HSA), 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 the Department of Homeland Security ``shall 
be deemed to refer to the Secretary'' of Homeland Security. See 6 
U.S.C. 557 (codifying HSA, tit. XV, sec. 1517).
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    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 section 244(b)(3)(A) of 
the INA, 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 is extended for an additional 6 months (or in the 
Secretary's discretion for 12 or 18 months). See section 244(b)(3)(C) 
of the INA, 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 section 244(b)(3)(B) 
of the INA, 8 U.S.C. 1254a(b)(3)(B).

What is the Secretary's authority to redesignate South Sudan for TPS?

    In addition to extending an existing TPS designation, the 
Secretary, after consultation with appropriate Government agencies, may 
redesignate a country (or part thereof) for TPS. See section 244(b)(1) 
of the INA, 8 U.S.C. 1254a(b)(1); see also section 244(c)(1)(A)(i) of 
the INA, 8 U.S.C. 1254a(c)(1)(A)(i) (requiring that ``the alien has 
been continuously physically present since the effective date of the 
most recent designation of the state.'' (emphasis added)). This is one 
of several instances in which the Secretary, and prior to the 
establishment of the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) the Attorney 
General, have simultaneously extended a country's TPS designation and 
redesignated the country for TPS. See, e.g., 77 FR 25723 (May 1, 2012) 
(extension and redesignation for Somalia); 76 FR 29000 (May 19, 2011) 
(extension and redesignation for Haiti); 62 FR 16608 (Apr. 7, 1997) 
(extension and redesignation for Liberia).

[[Page 1868]]

    When the Secretary designates or redesignates a country for TPS, 
she also has the discretion to establish the date from which TPS 
applicants must demonstrate that they have been ``continuously 
resid[ing]'' in the United States. See section 244(c)(1)(A)(ii) of the 
INA, 8 U.S.C.S 1254a(c)(1)(A)(ii). This discretion permits the 
Secretary to tailor the ``continuous residence'' date to offer TPS to 
the group of eligible individuals that the Secretary deems appropriate.
    The Secretary has determined that the ``continuous residence'' date 
for applicants for TPS under the redesignation of South Sudan shall be 
January 9, 2013. Initial applicants for TPS under this redesignation 
must also show they have been ``continuously physically present'' in 
the United States since May 3, 2013, which is the effective date of the 
Secretary's redesignation of South Sudan. See section 244(c)(1)(A)(i) 
of the INA, 8 U.S.C. 1254a(c)(1)(A)(i). For each initial TPS 
application filed under the redesignation, the final determination 
whether the applicant has met the ``continuous physical presence'' 
requirement cannot be made until May 3, 2013. USCIS, however, will 
issue EADs, as appropriate, during the registration period in 
accordance with 8 CFR 244.5(b).

Why is the Secretary extending the TPS designation for South Sudan and 
simultaneously redesignating South Sudan for TPS through November 2, 
2014?

    Over the past year, DHS and the Department of State (DOS) have 
continued to review conditions in South Sudan. Based on this review and 
after consulting with DOS, the Secretary has determined that an 18-
month extension is warranted because the armed conflict is ongoing and 
the extraordinary and temporary conditions that prompted the November 
3, 2011 designation persist. The Secretary has further determined that 
the conditions in South Sudan, which have deteriorated, support 
redesignating South Sudan for TPS and changing the ``continuous 
residence'' and ``continuous physical presence'' dates so as to 
continue affording TPS protection to the fewer than 10 South Sudanese 
nationals who arrived in the United States before October 7, 2004 and 
registered under the initial designation and to extend TPS protection 
to eligible South Sudanese nationals who arrived between October 7, 
2004 and January 9, 2013.
    Ongoing armed conflict throughout much of South Sudan caused 
continued insecurity and led to continued internal displacement and 
refugee flight into neighboring countries, even as South Sudanese 
return to South Sudan en masse. Violence and ensuing population 
displacement, along with environmental and economic factors, have 
created one of the worst humanitarian crises in the world. Efforts by 
the international community to get aid to the civilian population 
continue to be severely compromised by weather-related factors, poor 
infrastructure, and threats to the safety of aid workers.
    The signing of the Comprehensive Peace Agreement (CPA) in January 
2005 put an end to more than two decades of civil war in Sudan. There 
was significant progress towards fulfilling the mandates of the CPA, 
such as the creation of South Sudan on July 9, 2011. However, 
unresolved CPA issues created political tensions that led to military 
confrontations along the Sudan-South Sudan border (specifically the 
transitional areas of Abyei, Blue Nile State, and Southern Kordofan). 
Since May 2011 and continuing in 2012, sporadic violent conflicts 
involving the Sudan Armed Forces (SAF) and South Sudan's military--
Sudan People's Liberation Army (SPLA)--have led to loss of civilian 
life and mass displacement.
    As part of the CPA, the contested territory of Abyei was to be 
jointly administered until local residents determined whether they 
would join Sudan or the South Sudan, but the referendum has yet to be 
held. In the months leading up to South Sudan's independence, both the 
Sudanese and the South Sudanese armies reinforced their positions near 
Abyei. On May 19, 2011, in a move condemned by the United Nations (UN) 
as a breach of the 2005 CPA, SAF and Sudanese police attacked and took 
control of Abyei. The UN News Service reported that as a result of the 
conflict, more than 110,000 people were displaced into Agok and South 
Sudan. On June 20, 2011, Sudan and South Sudan reached an agreement on 
temporary administration measures and demilitarization of the area. 
Although the SAF and the majority of the Sudanese Police had withdrawn 
from the area by June 2012, the UN reported that as of July 2012, the 
majority of those who fled the fighting in 2011 remained displaced in 
and outside the Abyei area because of the lack of a civilian Abyei 
administration, the continued presence of armed forces, and the 
presence of landmines.
    In June 2011, fighting between the SAF and the SPLA erupted in 
Kadugli, the capital of Southern Kordofan. On June 25, 2011, the UN 
Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA) reported 
that Sudanese government forces conducted airstrikes and artillery 
shelling in the eastern and southern parts of the Nuba Mountains in 
Southern Kordofan. Hostilities increased in April 2012, when South 
Sudanese forces captured the disputed oilfield of Heglig.
    In September 2011, a new battle zone erupted in Blue Nile State. 
Human Rights Watch (HRW) interviewed witnesses who ``described 
indiscriminate bombings in civilian areas, killings, and other serious 
abuses by Sudanese armed forces since armed conflict broke out there.'' 
Ground fighting and aerial bombing of Sudan's Southern Kordofan and 
Blue Nile states by the SAF have killed hundreds of civilians and 
forced thousands to flee across the international border into crowded 
refugee camps in Unity and Upper Nile states in South Sudan.
    South Sudan's human rights record is poor and includes instances of 
extrajudicial killings, disappearances, arbitrary arrest and detention, 
forced population movements, rape, and forced conscription of children. 
Rebel groups are also responsible for serious abuses. Violence related 
to inter-tribal clashes and sporadic conflict related to irregular 
armed groups within South Sudan continued to threaten stability and 
negatively impact the civilian population. HRW noted that ``both the 
government and the UN peacekeepers have been unable to protect 
civilians and prevent these often predictable outbreaks of violence.'' 
DOS reported that since the beginning of 2012, over 12,000 South 
Sudanese refugees fled to neighboring countries. Inter-communal 
violence remains a serious problem, involving large-scale and armed 
violent attacks among neighboring communities and groups. The South 
Sudanese Government does not have the capability to secure much of its 
own territory, and relies on the UN Mission in South Sudan to provide 
protection of civilians in critical situations.
    South Sudan is already considered one of the poorest, least-
developed places in the world, and the ongoing humanitarian crisis has 
left much of South Sudan's population of 8 million in need of 
humanitarian assistance. The more than 620,000 South Sudanese returning 
from Sudan since October 2010 continue to strain limited resources, and 
high levels of humanitarian needs are reported in areas that have a 
high concentration of returnees. In January 2012, the Office of the UN 
High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) reported that over 550,000 
people had been internally displaced in South Sudan. OCHA further 
reported that there were over 160,000 new internally displaced people 
between

[[Page 1869]]

January and mid-July 2012. Furthermore, the UNHCR reported that as of 
July 2012, there were over 200,000 refugees living in South Sudan 
(around 170,000 were from Sudan), stretching existing humanitarian 
capabilities. The Government of South Sudan lacks the capacity and 
resources to meet the basic needs of the majority of its own citizens 
and refugees from neighboring countries.
    OCHA estimated in July 2012 that more than half of South Sudan's 8 
million population is at risk of food insecurity. DOS reported that an 
estimated 2.9 million people currently require food assistance. 
Significant areas of South Sudan are experiencing drought conditions, 
which is exacerbating the situation, pushing food deficits higher. The 
food shortages, the arrival of returnees and refugees, insecurity, and 
ongoing conflict have impaired the delivery of basic health services to 
large portions of the South Sudanese population.
    There are multiple factors impeding delivery of humanitarian aid. 
Although the Government of South Sudan made some positive efforts to 
reduce interference in humanitarian operations, USAID reported that 
``[i]nsecurity, landmines, and transportation and communication 
challenges due to limited infrastructure restrict humanitarian 
activities across South Sudan.'' It is estimated that there are fewer 
than 100 km of paved roads in South Sudan and the accessibility of 
those roads is compromised during the rainy season.
    Based upon this review and after consultation with appropriate 
Government agencies, the Secretary finds that:
     The conditions that prompted the November 3, 2011 
designation of South Sudan for TPS continue to be met. See sections 
244(b)(3)(A) and (C) of the INA, 8 U.S.C. 1254a(b)(3)(A) and (C).
     There continues to be an armed conflict in South Sudan 
and, due to such conflict, requiring the return of South Sudanese 
nationals to South Sudan would pose a serious threat to their personal 
safety. See section 244(b)(1)(A) of the INA, 8 U.S.C. 1254a(b)(1)(A).
     There continue to be extraordinary and temporary 
conditions in South Sudan that prevent South Sudanese nationals from 
returning to South Sudan in safety. See section 244(b)(1)(C) of the 
INA, 8 U.S.C. 1254a(b)(1)(C).
     It is not contrary to the national interest of the United 
States to permit South Sudanese (and persons who have no nationality 
who last habitually resided in South Sudan) who meet the eligibility 
requirements of TPS to remain in the United States temporarily. See 
section 244(b)(1)(C) of the INA, 8 U.S.C. 1254a(b)(1)(C).
     The designation of South Sudan for TPS should be extended 
for an additional 18-month period from May 3, 2013 through November 2, 
2014. See section 244(b)(3)(C) of the INA, 8 U.S.C. 1254a(b)(3)(C).
     Based on current country conditions, South Sudan should be 
simultaneously redesignated for TPS effective May 3, 2013 through 
November 2, 2014. See sections 244(b)(1)(A), (b)(1)(C) and (b)(2) of 
the INA; 8 U.S.C.S 1254a(b)(1)(A), (b)(1)(C) and (b)(2).
     TPS applicants must demonstrate that they have 
continuously resided in the United States since January 9, 2013.
     The date by which TPS applicants must demonstrate that 
they have been continuously physically present in the United States is 
May 3, 2013, the effective date of the redesignation of South Sudan for 
TPS.
     There are fewer than 10 current South Sudanese TPS 
beneficiaries who are expected to be eligible to re-register for TPS 
under the extension. DHS recognizes that some individuals who 
registered under the designation of Sudan may be eligible for TPS under 
the redesignation of South Sudan and may choose to apply as such. They 
will be granted TPS under the South Sudan redesignation if they present 
satisfactory evidence of South Sudanese nationality and are otherwise 
eligible.
     It is estimated that fewer than 4,000 additional 
individuals may be eligible for TPS under the combined redesignations 
of South Sudan and Sudan. With the creation of South Sudan having just 
occurred July 9, 2011, it is difficult to breakdown this estimate 
between the two countries. This population includes potentially 
eligible South Sudanese and Sudanese who are in a lawful nonimmigrant 
status or who have no other status.

Notice of Extension of the TPS Designation of South Sudan and 
Redesignation of South Sudan for TPS

    By the authority vested in me as Secretary under section 244 of the 
INA, 8 U.S.C. 1254a, I have determined, after consultation with the 
appropriate Government agencies, that the conditions that prompted the 
2011 designation of South Sudan for TPS not only continue to be met but 
have deteriorated. See section 244(b)(3)(A) of the INA, 8 U.S.C. 
1254a(b)(3)(A). On the basis of this determination, I am simultaneously 
extending the existing TPS designation of South Sudan for 18 months 
from May 3, 2013 through November 2, 2014, and redesignating South 
Sudan for TPS for 18 months from May 3, 2013 through November 2, 2014. 
See sections 244(b)(1)(A), (b)(1)(C) and (b)(2) of the INA; 8 U.S.C. 
1254a(b)(1)(A), (b)(1)(C) and (b)(2). I have also determined that 
eligible individuals must demonstrate that they have continuously 
resided in the United States since January 9, 2013. See section 
244(c)(1)(A)(ii) of the INA, 8 U.S.C. 1254a(c)(1)(A)(ii).

Janet Napolitano,
Secretary.

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

    To register or re-register for TPS for South Sudan, an applicant 
must submit each of the following two applications:
    1. Application for Temporary Protected Status (Form I-821).
     If you are filing an initial application, you must pay the 
fee for the Application for Temporary Protected Status (Form I-821). 
See 8 CFR 244.2(f)(1) and 244.6 and information on initial filing on 
the USCIS TPS Web page at http://www.uscis.gov/tps.
     If you are filing a 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;
     If you are currently a TPS beneficiary under the Sudan TPS 
designation (or you have a pending TPS Sudan initial application) and 
are now filing an initial application for the South Sudan designation, 
you do not need to pay the fee for the Application for Temporary 
Protected Status (Form I-821). But you do need to provide either a copy 
of (1) A Sudan TPS Approval Notice (Form I-797) showing you are 
currently a Sudan TPS beneficiary, (2) an EAD showing that you are 
currently a Sudan TPS beneficiary, or (3) a receipt notice for an 
Application for Temporary Protected Status (Form I-821) if you have a 
pending TPS Sudan initial application; and
    2. Application for Employment Authorization (Form I-765).
     If you are applying for 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 66 and older and applying 
for initial registration.
     If you are applying for re-registration, you must pay the 
fee for the Application for Employment

[[Page 1870]]

Authorization (Form I-765) only if you want an EAD.
     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 initial registration or re-
registration.
     If you have a pending Application for Employment 
Authorization (Form I-765) that you previously submitted with your 
request for Sudan TPS and you have not yet received your EAD under 
Sudan TPS, then you do not need to repay the Application for Employment 
Authorization (Form I-765) fee. But you must submit a copy of your 
receipt notice for the Application for Employment Authorization (Form 
I-765) related to Sudan TPS (or your fee waiver grant notice) with your 
new application. Your fee (or fee waiver grant) will be applied to your 
application for an EAD under the South Sudan TPS designation, if your 
Sudan TPS EAD has not been mailed to you yet.
    You must submit both completed application forms together. If you 
are unable to pay for the application 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.

Refiling an Initial TPS Application After Receiving a Denial of a Fee 
Waiver Request

    If you request a fee waiver when filing your initial TPS 
application package and your request is denied, you may refile your 
application packet before the initial filing deadline of July 8, 2013. 
If you submit your application with a fee waiver request before that 
deadline, but you receive a fee waiver denial and there are fewer than 
45 days before the filing deadline (or the deadline has passed), you 
may still refile your application within the 45-day period after the 
date on the USCIS fee waiver denial notice. Your application will not 
be rejected even if the filing deadline has passed, provided it is 
mailed within those 45 days and all other required information for the 
application is included. Note: If you wish, you may also wait to 
request an EAD and pay the Application for Employment Authorization 
(Form I-765) fee after USCIS grants you TPS, if you are found eligible. 
If you choose to do this, you would still need to file the Application 
for Employment Authorization (Form I-765) without fee and without 
requesting an EAD with the Application for Temporary Protected Status 
(Form I-821).

Refiling 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 refile 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 refile by the re-
registration deadline, the applicant may still refile his or her 
application. This situation will be reviewed under 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 section 244(c)(3)(C) of the INA; 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.

Mailing Information

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

                       Table 1--Mailing Addresses
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                If . . .                          Mail to . . .
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You are applying through the U.S.        USCIS, P.O. Box 6943, Chicago,
 Postal Service.                          IL 60680-6943.
You are using a non-U.S. Postal Service  USCIS, Attn: TPS South Sudan,
 delivery service.                        131 S. Dearborn 3rd Floor,
                                          Chicago, IL 60603-5517.
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    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 the IJ or 
BIA, please mail your application to the appropriate address in Table 1 
above. Upon receiving a Receipt Notice 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 applying for initial registration for South Sudan TPS. Please mail 
your application to the mailing address listed in Table 1 above.

[[Page 1871]]

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.

Will my current EAD, which is set to expire on May 2, 2013, be 
automatically extended for 6 months?

    No. This notice does not automatically extend previously issued 
EADs. DHS has announced the extension of the TPS designation of South 
Sudan and established the re-registration period at an early date to 
allow sufficient time for USCIS to process EAD requests prior to the 
May 2, 2013 expiration date. You must apply during the 60-day re-
registration period. Failure to apply for TPS 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.

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 document from List B 
(reflecting identity) together with one document from List C 
(reflecting employment authorization). An EAD is an acceptable document 
under ``List A.'' Employers may not reject a document based upon 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?

    You must present any document from List A or any document from List 
C on Employment Eligibility Verification (Form I-9) to reverify 
employment authorization. Your employer is required to reverify 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 Form I-9 
originally completed for the employee or, if this section has already 
been completed or if the version of Form I-9 is no longer valid, in 
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.
    USCIS anticipates that it will be able to process and issue new 
EADs for existing TPS South Sudan beneficiaries before their current 
EADs expire on May 2, 2013. 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 South Sudanese citizenship?

    No. When completing Employment Eligibility Verification (Form I-9), 
including reverifying employment authorization, employers must accept 
any documentation that appears on the ``Lists of Acceptable Documents'' 
for Employment Eligibility Verification (Form I-9) and that reasonably 
appears to be genuine and that relates to you. Employers may not 
request documentation that does not appear on the ``Lists of Acceptable 
Documents.'' Therefore, employers may not request proof of South 
Sudanese citizenship when completing Employment Eligibility 
Verification (Form I-9) for new hires or reverifying the employment 
authorization of current employees. If presented with EADs that are 
unexpired on their face, employers should accept such EADs as valid 
List A documents so long as the EADs reasonably appear to be genuine 
and to relate to the employee. See below 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 the USCIS Form I-9 Customer 
Support at 888-464-4218 (TDD for the hearing impaired is at 877-875-
6028). For questions about avoiding discrimination during the 
employment eligibility verification process, employers may also call 
the Department of Justice, Office of Special Counsel for Immigration-
Related Unfair Employment Practices (OSC) Employer Hotline at 800-255-
8155 (TDD for the hearing impaired is at 800-237-2515), which offers 
language interpretation in numerous languages.

Note to Employees

    For general questions about the employment eligibility verification 
process, employees may call the USCIS National Customer Service Center 
at 800-375-5283 (TDD for the hearing impaired is at 800-767-1833); 
calls are accepted in English and Spanish. Employees or applicants may 
also call the OSC Worker Information Hotline at 800-255-7688 (TDD for 
the hearing impaired is at 1-800-237-2515) for information regarding 
employment discrimination based upon citizenship, 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. In order to comply with the law, employers must accept any 
document or combination of documents acceptable for Employment 
Eligibility Verification (Form I-9) completion if the documentation 
reasonably appears to be genuine and to relate to the employee. 
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 initial mismatch (``tentative nonconfirmation'' or ``TNC'') on 
employees must inform employees of the mismatch and give such employees 
an opportunity to challenge the mismatch. Employers are prohibited from 
taking adverse action against such employees based on the initial 
mismatch unless and until E-Verify returns a final nonconfirmation. For 
example, employers must allow employees challenging their mismatches to 
continue to work without any delay in start date or training and 
without any change in hours or pay, while the final E-Verify 
determination remains

[[Page 1872]]

pending. Additional information 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 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 are:
    (1) Your EAD that has a valid expiration date;
    (2) A copy of your Application for Temporary Protected Status 
Receipt Notice (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 receive 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 
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 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.

[FR Doc. 2013-00051 Filed 1-8-13; 8:45 am]
BILLING CODE 9111-97-P