U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) has announced an automatic six-month extension of the validity of employment authorization documents (EADs) for Salvadoran, Honduran and Nicaraguan TPS (Temporary Protected Status) beneficiaries. To benefit from the automatic extension, affected TPS beneficiaries must submit an EAD extension application. El Salvadorans receive an automatic employment authorization from March 10, 2009 through September 9, 2009. Hondurans and Nicaraguans receive an automatic employment authorization from January 6, 2009 through July 5, 2009. While no automatic EAD extension was included in the original USCIS releases announcing the extension of TPS status (see the October 2008 issue of the Immigration eAuthority), USCIS cited agency processing delays in now deciding to grant the extension.

Employers need to be mindful of the automatic extension when reverifying the employment authorization of affected TPS employees on Form I-9. Automatically extended EADs will bear the annotation “A-19” or “C-12” under “Category” and an expiration date of either January 5, 2009 for Nicaraguan and Honduran TPS beneficiaries and March 9, 2009 for Salvadoran TPS beneficiaries. The USCIS’ website contains additional information on the extensions for Nicaraguan and Honduran TPS beneficiaries and Salvadoran TPS beneficiaries.

Note: This article was published in the December 2008 issue of the Immigration eAuthority.

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