New York Lawyer's Legal Updates

I 601 Waiver For TPS Applicants

Author: New York Immigration Lawyer Alena Shautsova

The list of countries designated and redesignated for TPS is growing, so is the pool of applicants for this status. With the recent news regarding resumption of removals to Venezuela, it is important that each qualified for TPS undocumented resident of the US files for it ASAP.

TPS provides protection from deportation, a work permit, ability to apply and receive a travel permit (advance parole), and indirectly opens a path to a legal permanent residency in the US. As such, it is a highly desirable status, and all who potentially qualify for it, should apply.

You do need to keep in mind that there are strict deadlines as to when to apply initially for the TPS, and when to re-register for it. If you would like to enjoy an automatic work permit extension as a TPS recipient, you must submit your re-registration on time as well. You can read more about why you should file for a TPS here.

It is, generally speaking, easy to qualify for TPS: one has to demonstrate they resided in the US from a specific date designated by the government depending on the qualifying country. One can file for TPS even if they are in removal proceedings, even if they already have a removal order, even if they overstayed their status. But, there is one obstacle that may spoil your chances of receiving this great status: inadmissibility. Even with TPS there may be legal barriers before one can qualify for it. Luckily, for many grounds of inadmissibility there is an I 601 waiver available. I 601 waiver can waive the following grounds of inadmissibility which may not be (at times) waived for other situations, such as adjustment of status:

  1. Misrepresentation/fraud
  2. Communicable decease of public health significance
  3. A physical of mental disorder and behavior which has posed or may pose threat to the property, safety, or welfare of myself or others;
  4. Being a drug abuser or drug addict as described in US DOH and HHS Regulations
  5. Having been involved in a controlled substance violation according to the laws and regulations of any state, the US, or a foreign country related to a single offense of simple possession of 30 grams or less of marijuana
  6. Coming to the US to engage in prostitution or having engaged in prostitution in the past 10 years, or engaged in procurement of prostitution
  7. Coming to the US to engage in unlawful commercialized vice
  8. Having been involved in unlawful criminal activity and have asserted immunity from prosecution
  9. Did not attend or did not remain at a removal proceedings to determine inadmissibility or deportability
  10. Falsely representing oneself as a US citizen
  11. Having been engaged in alien smuggling
  12. Being subject to a civil penalty due to final order of removal
  13. Being ineligible for citizenship because departed the US to avoid military service during the time of emergency or war
  14. Practiced polygamy
  15. Being a former US citizen who renounced US citizenship
  16. Being an unlawful voter
  17. Having detained, retained, or withheld the custody of a child having a lawful claim of a US citizenship outside the US, from person granted custody

The waiver is available for the grounds above and can be granted to preserve family unity, for humanitarian purpose or in public interests. The waiver received for TPS purposes can be used only for TPS purpose, in other words if later you will try to file for adjustment of status, you still will have to file a waiver if certain grounds of inadmissibility will apply.

But, there is no waiver for these following situations that will disqualify one for TPS:

One cannot receive TPS if she/he is subject to any of the mandatory bars to asylum listed in INA §208(b)(2)(A) (These include, but are not limited to, participating in the persecution of another individual or engaging in or inciting terrorist activity.) Also it is not possible to get TPS if the applicant previously firmly resettled in a third country. And finally, if one has been convicted of any felony or two or more misdemeanors committed in the United States, he/she also cannot get TPS.

Many non-for-profits provide free assistance in connection with TPS filings. If you have a straightforward case, you may use them. But if you have criminal history, duel citizenship or permanent residence from several countries, have any inadmissibility bars discussed above that may apply to you, you should work with an attorney!

If you need help for your TPS case, please contact us to reserve an appointment at 917 885 2261 or by email at

19 October 2023
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