Temporary Protected Status

Overview

On April 19, 2022, USCIS opened the Temporary Protected Status (TPS) program for Ukrainian nationals who arrived in the U.S. on or before April 11, 2022 and have resided in country since. The TPS status is given for 18 months, through October 19, 2023. With the TPS status, you will remain in the US legally and may apply for work authorization and enroll your children in school. You may also travel outside the U.S. with a permission of the immigration service (“Advance Parole”).

You are eligible to apply for TPS if you are a Ukrainian national who arrived in the U.S. on or before April 11, 2022, have lived in the U.S. since and do not have convictions for serious crimes. People who arrived in the U.S. on a tourist visa, humanitarian parole, or are in the process of seeking asylum can apply for TPS.

The timeframe for processing TPS applications for Ukraine is 6-8 months.

It is yet unknown whether the TPS designation for Ukraine will be extended beyond October 19, 2023. Historically, the U.S. has repeatedly extended such designation for some countries with ongoing humanitarian crises. If this happens for Ukraine, persons who have attained a TPS status will be able to extend it beyond 18 months.

You can apply for TPS online, or by mail. If you are submitting forms I-131 – Application for Travel Document or I-912 – Request for Fee Waiver, you may not be able to apply online and will have to apply by mail.


How to Apply

To apply for TPS, for each family member who arrived from Ukraine:

Fill our an application for TPS

Fill out form I-821 – Application for Temporary Protected Status. The filing fee for this form is $50. Add $85 for biometric services (children under 14 years old do not have to pay the biometric fee).

  • Complete sections 1-3 and 7-11 (sections 4-6 are required only for late filings and don’t apply at this time).
  • If a question does not apply to you, type “N/A.”
  • For items 2-3 in section 7, use the last sheet or attach additional sheets if the responses about the countries you visited don’t fit. Print the applicant’s name on top of each additional sheet, indicate what section and question it responds to, and sign and date it.
  • If you have answered YES to any eligibility question in Section 7, attach additional sheets with an explanation and a certified translation of all relevant police, court or other documents showing what happened. If you cannot attach official documents, provide a signed explanation of the reasons.

Fill out an application for work authorization

If the applicant needs permission to work and has not yet applied for employment authorization, fill out form I-765 – Application for Employment Authorization Document. See instructions in the Documents section. The filing fee for this form is $410 (children under 14 years old and seniors older than 65 are exempt from the filing fee if submitting I-765 together with a TPS application).

Fill out an application for Advance Parole

If the applicant wants to be able to travel outside the U.S. while on TPS, submit also form I-131 – Application for Travel Document to receive an Advance Parole. The filing fee for this form is $575.

Fill out a request for Fee Waiver

If you cannot afford to pay the fees for the forms and biometric services, attach also form I-912 – Request for Fee Waiver. Prepare one form for the entire family and submit on top of the applications for all family members for whom you are asking the fee waiver. If you are receiving welfare benefits, such as Medicaid, food stamps or cash aid, put that information in I-912 form and attach a proof (a document called “verification of benefits” from the welfare agency). If you do not receive welfare benefits, explain in great detail in the Financial Hardship section of the form why you cannot afford to pay the filing fee. Each family member for whom you are asking the fee waiver must sign the form in Part 7.

Attach the following documents

  1. A copy of the Ukrainian passport (page with the photograph and page with the stamp showing entry in the U.S., if any);
  2. A copy of I-94 (front and back, if you have a white card from the border);
  3. 2 passport-type photos (if applying for employment authorization via form I-765);
  4. Certified translation of the marriage certificate (if filing form I-912 for you and your spouse);
  5. Certified translation of the child’s birth certificate (if filing any form for a child below the age of 14 or filing form I-912 for a family that has a child above the age of 14);
  6. Proof of residence in the U.S.: a rental agreement, a utility bill in your name, the letter from a welfare agency or DMV showing your name and address or any other official documents showing that you currently live in the U.S. If you do not yet have any “official” documents, submit a letter explaining the situation and attach what you have: a free housing voucher, the letter from a friend or relative with whom you are staying or your correspondence with the landlord who allowed you to stay at their place;
  7. A check for the combined filing fee addressed to “United States Department of Homeland Security” – if you are NOT including a Request for Fee Waiver (form I-912).

If applying by mail, send all forms and supporting documents to the appropriate address:

If you live in…

Alabama, Alaska, American Samoa, Arizona, Arkansas, Colorado, Connecticut, Delaware, District of Columbia, Florida, Georgia, Guam, Hawaii, Idaho, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, New York, Ohio

Mail to…

USCIS Chicago Lockbox

USPS:
U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services
Attn: TPS Ukraine
P.O. Box 4464
Chicago, IL 60680-4464

FedEx, UPS или DHL:
U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services
Attn: TPS Ukraine (Box 4464)
131 S. Dearborn St., 3rd Floor
Chicago, IL 60603-5517

If you live in…

California, New Jersey, Michigan, Minnesota, Mississippi, Missouri, Montana, Nebraska, Nevada, New Hampshire, New Mexico, North Carolina, North Dakota, Northern Mariana Islands, Oklahoma, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Puerto Rico, Rhode Island, South Carolina, South Dakota, Tennessee, Texas, Utah, Vermont, Virgin Islands, Virginia, Washington, West Virginia, Wisconsin, Wyoming

Mail to..

USCIS Phoenix Lockbox

USPS
U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services
Attn: TPS Ukraine
P.O. Box 24047
Phoenix, AZ 85074-4047

FedEx, UPS или DHL:
U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services
Attn: TPS Ukraine (Box 24047)
1820 E. Skyharbor Circle S
Suite 100
Phoenix, AZ 85034-4850

If you have moved since you filed any applications with USCIS, change your address via form AR-11 – Change of Address or your USCIS online account! Include the receipt number for any pending cases with USCIS with your address change request. Otherwise USCIS will mail all correspondence and documents to your old address!
If you need the help of an attorney in filling out the forms, contact Lawyers for Good Government or another Legal Aid organization.