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This article was prepared with the assistance of ABIL, the Alliance of Business Immigration Lawyers, of which Loan Huynh, Fredrikson Immigration Department Chair, is a member.

The Department of Homeland Security (DHS) announced several measures to provide relief for Ethiopians in the United States:

Registration Process for Ethiopia TPS Begins

In October, DHS announced the 18-month designation of Ethiopia for temporary protected status (TPS). The registration process begins on December 12, 2022, and runs through June 12, 2024. U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) estimates that about 26,700 individuals may be eligible for TPS under Ethiopia’s designation.

To be eligible for TPS under Ethiopia’s designation, individuals must demonstrate their continuous residence in the United States since October 20, 2022, and continuous physical presence in the United States since December 12, 2022. Individuals arriving in the United States after October 20, 2022, are not eligible for TPS under this designation and may be subject to removal if they have no other authorization to be in the United States, DHS said.

Relief Provided for F-1 Nonimmigrant Ethiopian Students

Effective December 12, 2022, through June 12, 2024, DHS is suspending certain regulatory requirements for F-1 nonimmigrant students whose country of citizenship is Ethiopia, regardless of country of birth (or individuals having no nationality who last habitually resided in Ethiopia), who are experiencing severe economic hardship as a direct result of the current crisis in Ethiopia.

DHS said these students may request employment authorization, work an increased number of hours while school is in session, and reduce their course loads while continuing to maintain their F-1 nonimmigrant student status. DHS said it will deem such an F-1 nonimmigrant student to be engaged in a “full course of study” for the duration of the employment authorization, if the nonimmigrant student satisfies the minimum course load requirement described in the notice.

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