Six-Month Extension of Temporary Protected Status Benefits for Orderly Transition Before Termination of Guinea's Designation for Temporary Protected Status, 66064-66069 [2016-23244]

Download as PDF 66064 Federal Register / Vol. 81, No. 186 / Monday, September 26, 2016 / Notices mstockstill on DSK3G9T082PROD with NOTICES information about proper nondiscriminatory Employment Eligibility Verification (Form I–9) and EVerify procedures 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 unexpired EAD; (2) A copy of this Federal Register Notice if your EAD is automatically extended under this Notice; (3) A copy of your Application for Temporary Protected Status Notice of Action (Form I–797); (4) A copy of your past or current Application for Temporary Protected Status Approval Notice (Form I–797), if you received one from USCIS; and/or (5) If there is an automatic extension of work authorization, a copy of the fact sheet from the USCIS TPS Web site that provides information on the automatic extension. Check with the government agency regarding which document(s) the agency will accept. You may also provide the agency with a copy of this Federal Register Notice. Some benefit-granting agencies use the USCIS Systematic Alien Verification for Entitlements Program (SAVE) to confirm the current immigration status of applicants for public benefits. In most cases, SAVE provides an automated electronic response to benefit granting agencies within seconds but occasionally verification can be delayed. You can check the status of your SAVE verification by using CaseCheck at the following link: https://save.uscis.gov/ casecheck/, then by clicking the ‘‘Check Your Case’’ button. CaseCheck is a free service that lets you follow the progress of your SAVE verification using your date of birth and one immigration identifier number. If such an agency has denied your application based solely or in part on a SAVE response, the agency VerDate Sep<11>2014 19:40 Sep 23, 2016 Jkt 238001 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 to correct records under the Freedom of Information Act can be found at the SAVE Web site at http://www.uscis.gov/ save, then by choosing ‘‘For Benefit Applicants’’ from the menu on the left and selecting ‘‘Questions about your Records?’’. [FR Doc. 2016–23250 Filed 9–22–16; 4:15 pm] BILLING CODE 9111–97–P DEPARTMENT OF HOMELAND SECURITY U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services [CIS No. 2587–16; DHS Docket No. USCIS– 2014–0010] RIN 1615–ZB55 Six-Month Extension of Temporary Protected Status Benefits for Orderly Transition Before Termination of Guinea’s Designation for Temporary Protected Status U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services, Department of Homeland Security. ACTION: Notice. AGENCY: The designation of Guinea for Temporary Protected Status (TPS) is set to expire on November 21, 2016. After reviewing country conditions and consulting with the appropriate U.S. Government (Government) agencies, the Secretary of the Department of Homeland Security (Secretary) has determined that conditions in Guinea no longer support its designation for TPS and is therefore extending TPS benefits for 6 months for the purpose of orderly transition before the TPS designation of Guinea terminates. This termination will be effective May 21, 2017, 6 months following the end of the current designation. To provide for an orderly transition, nationals of Guinea (and aliens having no nationality who last habitually resided in Guinea) who have been granted TPS under the Guinea designation will automatically retain their TPS and have their current tpsbased Employment Authorization Documents (EAD) extended through SUMMARY: PO 00000 Frm 00070 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 May 20, 2017. However, an individual’s TPS may still be withdrawn because of ineligibility for TPS. On May 21, 2017, nationals of Guinea (and aliens having no nationality who last habitually resided in Guinea) who have been granted TPS under the Guinea designation will no longer have TPS. DATES: The designation of Guinea for TPS is terminated effective at 12:01 a.m., local time, on May 21, 2017. FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: • For further information on TPS, please visit the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) TPS Web page at http://www.uscis.gov/tps. You can find specific information about the termination of Guinea’s TPS designation by selecting ‘‘Guinea’’ from the menu on the left side of the TPS Web page. • You can also contact Jerry Rigdon, Chief of the Waivers and Temporary Services 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 inquires. • 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). • Further information will also be available at local USCIS offices upon publication of this Notice. SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: Table of Abbreviations DHS—Department of Homeland Security DOS—Department of State EAD—Employment Authorization Document EVD—Ebola Virus Disease FNC—Final Nonconfirmation Government—U.S. Government INA—Immigration and Nationality Act OSC—Department of Justice, Office of Special Counsel for Immigration-Related Unfair Employment Practices SAVE—USCIS Systematic Alien Verification for Entitlements Program Secretary—Secretary of Homeland Security TNC—Tentative Nonconfirmation TPS—Temporary Protected Status TTY—Text Telephone USCIS—U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services WHO—World Health Organization What is Temporary Protected Status (TPS)? • TPS is a temporary immigration status granted to eligible nationals of a E:\FR\FM\26SEN1.SGM 26SEN1 Federal Register / Vol. 81, No. 186 / Monday, September 26, 2016 / Notices country designated for TPS under the Immigration and Nationality Act (INA), or to eligible 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, may not be removed, and are authorized to work and obtain EADs so long as they continue to meet the requirements of TPS. • TPS beneficiaries may also be granted travel authorization as a matter of discretion. • The granting of TPS does not result in or lead to permanent resident status. • To qualify for TPS, beneficiaries must meet the eligibility criteria described in INA section 244(c), 8 U.S.C. 1254a(c) and 8 CFR part 244. • When the Secretary terminates a country’s TPS designation, beneficiaries return to the same immigration status they maintained before TPS, if any (unless that status has since expired or been terminated), or to any other immigration status they lawfully obtained while registered for TPS. mstockstill on DSK3G9T082PROD with NOTICES When was Guinea designated for TPS? On November 21, 2014, the Secretary designated Guinea for TPS for a period of 18 months due to the extraordinary and temporary conditions caused by an epidemic of Ebola Virus Disease (EVD) in West Africa that prevented nationals of Guinea from returning to Guinea in safety. The conditions included high EVD transmission rates in wide-spread geographic areas, overwhelmed health care systems unable to handle the large number of EVD patients or to provide treatment for normally preventable or treatable conditions, and containment measures that were causing significant disruptions to Guinea’s economy and individuals’ ability to access food and earn a livelihood. See Designation of Guinea for Temporary Protected Status, 79 FR 69511 (Nov. 21, 2014). The Secretary last announced a 6-month extension of TPS for Guinea on March 22, 2016, based on his determination that although there were significant improvements, conditions supporting the designation persisted. See Extension of the Designation of Guinea for Temporary Protected Status, 81 FR 15339 (Mar. 22, 2016). What authority does the Secretary have to terminate the designation of Guinea 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 if VerDate Sep<11>2014 19:40 Sep 23, 2016 Jkt 238001 the Secretary determines that certain country conditions exist.1 The Secretary may then grant TPS to eligible nationals of that foreign state (or eligible aliens having no nationality who last habitually resided in the designated country). See INA section 244(a)(1)(A), 8 U.S.C. 1254a(a)(1)(A). 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 INA section 244(b)(3)(A), 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 may be extended for an additional period of 6, 12, or 18 months. See INA section 244(b)(3)(C), 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, but such termination may not take effect earlier than 60 days after the date the Federal Register notice of termination is published, or if later, the expiration of the most recent previous extension of the country designation. See INA section 244(b)(3)(B), 8 U.S.C. 1254a(b)(3)(B). The Secretary may determine the appropriate effective date of the termination and the expiration of any TPS-related documentation, such as EADs, for the purpose of providing an orderly transition. See id.; INA section 244(d)(3), 8 U.S.C. 1254a(d)(3). Why is the Secretary terminating the designation of Guinea for TPS as of May 21, 2017, after a 6-month extension of TPS benefits for the purpose of orderly transition? DHS and the Department of State (DOS) have reviewed conditions in Guinea. Based on the reviews and after consulting with DOS, the Secretary has determined that the termination of the TPS designation of Guinea, after a 6month extension of TPS benefits for orderly transition, is required because the extraordinary and temporary conditions that prompted Guinea’s designation for TPS have substantially 1 As of March 1, 2003, in accordance with section 1517 of title XV of the Homeland Security Act of 2002, 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 (DHS) ‘‘shall be deemed to refer to the Secretary’’ of Homeland Security. See 6 U.S.C. 557 (codifying the Homeland Security Act of 2002, tit. XV, section 1517). PO 00000 Frm 00071 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 66065 resolved and no longer prevent nationals of Guinea from returning in safety. Guinea, Liberia, and Sierra Leone were designated for TPS in the midst of the largest EVD outbreak in history. From March 2014 through November 2015, these three countries suffered over 11,000 deaths among their more than 28,500 cases of EVD. At the height of the outbreak in late 2014, Ebola was spreading rapidly, with hundreds of new cases being reported each week, the health care systems overwhelmed, and containment measures causing significant disruptions to individuals’ ability to access food and earn a livelihood. While the impacts of the epidemic pose a lasting challenge to Guinea’s economy and the capacity of its health system to provide treatment for preventable or treatable conditions, at this time, the EVD epidemic has subsided, and conditions have improved since the Secretary initially designated Guinea for TPS. A robust response by the international community and the governments of Guinea, Liberia, and Sierra Leone has brought the EVD epidemic in West Africa under control and begun the long-term work of rebuilding regional economies and health systems. Guinea was initially declared Ebola-free on December 29, 2015, by the World Health Organization (WHO). On March 29, 2016, the WHO Director-General declared the end of the Public Health Emergency of International Concern regarding the EVD outbreak in West Africa. In conjunction with ending the public health emergency, the WHO emphasized that there should be no restrictions on travel and trade with Guinea, Liberia, and Sierra Leone. As of June 2016, the WHO declared Guinea free of Ebola transmission. A country is considered free of EVD transmission after 42 days have passed since the last known person in the country with EVD receives a second consecutive negative blood test for the virus. As of August 31, 2016, Guinea had completed a 90-day period of enhanced surveillance for EVD following the declaration that it was free of EVD transmission. While the risk of flare-ups of EVD remains, efforts are underway to promote, over time, robust prevention, surveillance, and response capacity across all three countries. The Guinean government has established response and containment measures to detect the movement of symptomatic persons and conducts inhome monitoring of those who have been exposed to EVD. Guineans return daily from travel abroad, and airlines are operating almost at capacity. While health systems and facilities remain E:\FR\FM\26SEN1.SGM 26SEN1 mstockstill on DSK3G9T082PROD with NOTICES 66066 Federal Register / Vol. 81, No. 186 / Monday, September 26, 2016 / Notices fragile, medical centers are no longer overwhelmed by patients with EVD. High rates of child mortality both before and since the EVD epidemic are indicative of the overall fragility of the health system. Although this is comparable to other countries in the region, systems in Guinea must also be able to address ongoing issues of trust between healthcare facilities and communities, as well as continue to care for Ebola survivors who have a series of ongoing and previously unforeseen health conditions, both of which will continue to exacerbate and underscore the fragility of these systems. There are no parts of the country that should be avoided because of the virus. Normal business activity and national life have largely resumed, although work is ongoing to rebuild Guinea’s economy and health care system. The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has no Travel Health Notice in place for Guinea related to Ebola as of the date of this Notice. Based upon this review and after consultation with appropriate Government agencies, the Secretary has determined that Guinea no longer continues to meet the statutorily required conditions for a TPS designation on the basis of extraordinary and temporary conditions, because the extraordinary and temporary conditions that prompted Guinea’s TPS designation have substantially resolved and no longer prevent nationals of Guinea from returning to Guinea in safety. Therefore, after a 6-month extension of TPS benefits for orderly transition, the Secretary is terminating the TPS designation of Guinea effective at 12:01 a.m., local time, on May 21, 2017. See INA section 244(b)(3)(B), 8 U.S.C. 1254a(b)(3)(B). To provide for an orderly transition, individuals who have been granted TPS under Guinea’s designation will automatically retain TPS and have their current EADs extended until the termination date. See INA section 244(d)(3), 8 U.S.C. 1254a(d)(3). DHS may, however, withdraw TPS from any beneficiary who fails to continue meeting the requirements for TPS. See INA section 244(c)(3), 8 U.S.C. 1254a(c)(3). There are approximately 930 current Guinea TPS beneficiaries. These persons are urged to use the time before termination of their TPS to prepare for and arrange their departure from the United States or, in the alternative, to apply for other immigration benefits for which they are eligible. VerDate Sep<11>2014 19:40 Sep 23, 2016 Jkt 238001 Notice of Six-Month Extension of TPS Benefits for Orderly Transition Before Termination of the TPS Designation of Guinea By the authority vested in me as Secretary under INA section 244, 8 U.S.C. 1254a, I have determined, after consultation with the appropriate Government agencies, that Guinea no longer meets the conditions for designation of TPS under INA section 244(b)(1). 8 U.S.C. 1254a(b)(1). Accordingly, I order as follows: (1) Pursuant to INA section 244(b)(3)(B), the designation of Guinea for TPS is terminated effective at 12:01 a.m., local time on May 21, 2017, 6 months following the end of the current designation. (2) DHS estimates that there are approximately 930 nationals of Guinea (and aliens having no nationality who last habitually resided in Guinea) who currently receive TPS benefits. (3) To provide for an orderly transition, nationals of Guinea (and aliens having no nationality who last habitually resided in Guinea) who have been granted TPS under the Guinea designation will automatically retain TPS until the May 21, 2017, termination date. However, an individual’s TPS may be withdrawn prior to this date under INA section 244(c)(3) and 8 CFR 244.14 because of ineligibility for TPS. (4) TPS-based EADs that expire on November 21, 2016, are extended automatically through May 20, 2017, for qualified nationals of Guinea (and aliens having no nationality who last habitually resided in Guinea). (5) Information concerning the termination of TPS for nationals of Guinea (and aliens having no nationality who last habitually resided in Guinea) will be available at local USCIS offices upon publication of this Notice and through the USCIS National Customer Service Center at 1–800–375– 5283. This information will be published on the USCIS Web site at www.USCIS.gov. Jeh Charles Johnson, Secretary. If I currently have TPS under Guinea’s designation, do I need to re-register to keep my TPS until May 21, 2017, the termination date? No. If you already have been granted TPS benefits through the Guinea TPS program, you do not have to re-register to keep your TPS benefits. You will automatically retain TPS until the termination date. However, your TPS may still be withdrawn under INA section 244(c)(3) and 8 CFR part 244 because of ineligibility for TPS. 8 U.S.C. PO 00000 Frm 00072 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 1254a(c)(3), 8 CFR 244.14. When termination becomes effective on May 21, 2017, you will no longer have TPS. Why is the Secretary automatically extending the validity of EADs from November 21, 2016, through May 20, 2017? The Secretary has decided to extend automatically the validity of EADs to provide for an orderly transition leading up to the effective date for the termination of the Guinea TPS designation. Therefore, the validity of the applicable EADs is extended for a period of 6 months, through May 20, 2017. 8 U.S.C. 1254a(a)(2) and (d)(3). Must qualified individuals apply for the automatic extension of their TPSRelated EADs through May 20, 2017? No. Qualified individuals do not have to apply for this extension of their TPSrelated EADs through May 20, 2017. What may I do if I believe that returning to Guinea is not possible or preferable for Me? This Notice terminates the designation of Guinea for TPS. Nationals of Guinea (and aliens having no nationality who last habitually resided in Guinea) in the United States who believe returning to Guinea is not possible or preferable for them may be eligible to apply for another immigration status, such as lawful permanent residence, asylum, or a nonimmigrant status. Eligibility for these and other immigration benefits is determined individually on a case-bycase basis. For information about eligibility and how to apply, visit the USCIS Web site at www.USCIS.gov or call the USCIS National Customer Service Center at 1–800–375–5283. How does the termination of TPS affect my immigration status and what can I do? After the termination of the TPS designation of Guinea becomes effective on May 21, 2017, former TPS beneficiaries will maintain the same immigration status they held before TPS (unless the status has since expired or been terminated) or any other status they may have acquired while registered for TPS. Accordingly, if a TPS beneficiary held no lawful immigration status before being granted TPS and did not obtain any other status during the TPS period, he or she may be subject to removal upon the termination of the TPS designation. TPS-related EADs will expire on May 20, 2017, and will not be renewed. Termination of the TPS designation for Guinea does not necessarily affect E:\FR\FM\26SEN1.SGM 26SEN1 Federal Register / Vol. 81, No. 186 / Monday, September 26, 2016 / Notices pending applications for other forms of immigration status, relief or protection. However, former TPS beneficiaries will begin to accrue unlawful presence as of May 21, 2017, if they have not been granted any other immigration status, relief, protection, or authorization to remain in the United States. Employment Authorization Document (EAD) How can I obtain information on the status of my EAD request? To get case status information about your request for an EAD, you can check Case Status Online at http:// www.uscis.gov, or call the USCIS National Customer Service Center at 800–375–5283 (TTY 800–767–1833). If your Application for Employment Authorization (Form I–765) has been pending for more than 90 days, and you still need assistance, you may request an EAD inquiry appointment with USCIS by using the InfoPass system at https:// infopass.uscis.gov. However, we strongly encourage you first to check Case Status Online or call the USCIS National Customer Service Center for assistance before making an InfoPass appointment. mstockstill on DSK3G9T082PROD with NOTICES Am I eligible to receive an automatic 6month extension of my current EAD through May 20, 2017? Provided that you currently have TPS under the designation of Guinea, this Notice automatically extends your EAD by 6 months if you: • Are a national of Guinea (or an alien having no nationality who last habitually resided in Guinea); • Received an EAD under the designation of Guinea for TPS; and • Have an EAD with a marked expiration date of November 21, 2016, bearing the notation ‘‘A–12’’ or ‘‘C–19’’ on the face of the card under ‘‘Category.’’ 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 Form I–9. You can find additional detailed information on the USCIS I–9 Central Web page at http://www.uscis.gov/I9Central. 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 being hired, you must present proof of identity and employment authorization to your employer. VerDate Sep<11>2014 19:40 Sep 23, 2016 Jkt 238001 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.’’ Or you may present an acceptable receipt for a List A, List B, or List C document as described in the Form I–9 Instructions. An acceptable receipt includes a document that shows an employee has applied to replace a required document that was lost, stolen, or damaged. If you present an acceptable receipt for the application of a replacement document, you must present your employer with the actual document within 90 days. Employers may not reject a document based on a future expiration date. If your EAD has an expiration date of November 21, 2016, and states ‘‘A–12’’ or ‘‘C–19’’ under ‘‘Category,’’ it has been extended automatically for 6 months by virtue of this Federal Register Notice and you may choose to present your EAD to your employer as proof of identity and employment authorization for Form I–9 through May 20, 2017 (see the subsection titled ‘‘How do my employer and I complete the Employment Eligibility Verification (Form I–9) using an automatically extended EAD for a new job?’’ for further information). To minimize confusion over this extension at the time of hire, you should explain to your employer that USCIS has automatically extended your EAD through May 20, 2017. You may also show your employer a copy of this Federal Register Notice confirming the automatic extension of employment authorization through May 20, 2017. As an alternative to presenting your automatically extended EAD, you may choose to present any other acceptable document from List A, a combination of one selection from List B and one selection from List C, or a valid receipt. What documentation may I show my employer if I am already employed but my current TPS-related EAD is set to expire? Even though EADs with an expiration date of November 21, 2016, that state ‘‘A–12’’ or ‘‘C–19’’ under ‘‘Category’’ have been automatically extended for 6 months by this Federal Register Notice, your employer will need to ask you about your continued employment authorization once November 21, 2016, is reached to meet its responsibilities for Employment Eligibility Verification (Form I–9). Your employer may need to re-inspect your automatically extended EAD to check the expiration date and PO 00000 Frm 00073 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 66067 code to record the updated expiration date on your Employment Eligibility Verification (Form I–9) if he or she did not keep a copy of this EAD at the time you initially presented it. You and your employer must make corrections to the employment authorization expiration dates in Section 1 and Section 2 of Employment Eligibility Verification (Form I–9) (see the subsection titled ‘‘What corrections should my current employer and I make to Employment Eligibility Verification (Form I–9) if my EAD has been automatically extended?’’ for further information). You are also strongly encouraged, although not required, to show this Federal Register Notice to your employer to explain what to do for Employment Eligibility Verification (Form I–9). By May 20, 2017, the expiration date of the automatic extension, your employer must reverify your employment authorization. If you are employment authorized beyond the expiration date of the automatic extension, you must present any unexpired document from List A or any unexpired document from List C on Form I–9 to reverify employment authorization, or an acceptable List A or List C receipt described in the Employment Eligibility Verification (Form I–9) instructions. Your employer is required to reverify on Employment Eligibility Verification (Form I–9) the employment authorization of current employees no later than the automatically extended expiration date of a TPS-related EAD, which is May 20, 2017, in this case. Your employer should use either Section 3 of the Employment Eligibility Verification (Form I–9) originally completed for you or, if this section has already been completed or if the version of Form I– 9 is no longer valid (check the date in the upper right-hand corner of the form), complete Section 3 of a new Employment Eligibility Verification (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, and cannot reject an acceptable receipt. An acceptable receipt is described in the Employment Eligibility Verification (Form I–9) Instructions and includes one that shows an employee has applied to replace a required document that was lost, stolen or damaged. Can my employer require that I produce any other documentation to prove my current TPS status, such as proof of my Guinean citizenship? No. When completing Employment Eligibility Verification (Form I–9), including reverifying employment E:\FR\FM\26SEN1.SGM 26SEN1 66068 Federal Register / Vol. 81, No. 186 / Monday, September 26, 2016 / Notices authorization, employers must accept any documentation that appears on the ‘‘Lists of Acceptable Documents’’ for Employment Eligibility Verification (Form I–9) that reasonably appears to be genuine and that relates to you or an acceptable List A, List B, or List C receipt. Employers may not request documentation that does not appear on the ‘‘Lists of Acceptable Documents.’’ Therefore, employers may not request proof of Guinean citizenship or proof of re-registration for TPS when completing Employment Eligibility Verification (Form I–9) for new hires or reverifying the employment authorization of current employees. Refer to the ‘‘Note to Employees’’ section of this Notice 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. What happens after May 20, 2017, for purposes of employment authorization? After May 20, 2017, employers may no longer accept the EADs that this Federal Register Notice automatically extended. mstockstill on DSK3G9T082PROD with NOTICES How do my employer and I complete Employment Eligibility Verification (Form I–9) using an automatically extended EAD for a new job? When using an automatically extended EAD to complete Employment Eligibility Verification (Form I–9) for a new job before May 21, 2017, you and your employer should do the following: 1. For Section 1, you should: a. Check ‘‘An alien authorized to work;’’ b. Write the automatically extended EAD expiration date (May 20, 2017) in the first space; and c. Write your alien number (USCIS number or A-number) in the second space (your EAD or other document from DHS will have your USCIS number or A-number printed on it; the USCIS number is the same as your A-number without the A prefix). 2. For Section 2, employers should record the: a. Document title; b. Issuing authority; c. Document number; and d. Automatically extended EAD expiration date (May 20, 2017). No later than May 20, 2017, employers must reverify your employment authorization in Section 3 of Employment Eligibility Verification (Form I–9). VerDate Sep<11>2014 19:40 Sep 23, 2016 Jkt 238001 What corrections should my current employer and I make to Employment Eligibility Verification (Form I–9) if my EAD has been automatically extended? If you are an existing employee who presented a TPS-related EAD that was valid when you first started your job, but that EAD has now been automatically extended, your employer may need to reinspect your automatically extended EAD if your employer does not have a photocopy of the EAD on file, and you and your employer should correct your previously completed Form I–9 as follows: 1. For Section 1, you should: a. Draw a line through the expiration date in the first space; b. Write ‘‘May 20, 2017,’’ above the previous date; c. Write ‘‘TPS Ext.’’ in the margin of Section 1; and d. Initial and date the correction in the margin of Section 1. 2. For Section 2, employers should: a. Draw a line through the expiration date written in Section 2; b. Write ‘‘May 20, 2017,’’ above the previous date; c. Write ‘‘EAD Ext.’’ in the margin of Section 2; and d. Initial and date the correction in the margin of Section 2. No later than May 20, 2017, when the automatic extension of EADs expires, employers must reverify your employment authorization in Section 3. As an employer, what are my Employment Eligibility Verification (Form I–9) obligations after May 20, 2017? Employers are required to reverify an employee’s employment authorization in Section 3 of Employment Eligibility Verification (Form I–9) by the expiration date of an automatically extended EAD. Your employee must present unexpired documentation from either List A or List C (or an acceptable Form I–9 receipt) showing he or she is still authorized to work. Employers may not ask for specific documents; employees choose which List A or List C documents to present from the Lists of Acceptable Documents. If I am an employer enrolled in E-Verify, what do I do when I receive a ‘‘Work Authorization Documents Expiration’’ alert for an automatically extended EAD? If you have an employee who is a TPS beneficiary who provided a TPS-related EAD when he or she first started working for you, you will receive a ‘‘Work Authorization Documents PO 00000 Frm 00074 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 Expiring’’ case alert when the autoextension period for this EAD is about to expire. E-Verify will not send an alert for the original November 21, 2016, expiration date. By May 20, 2017, employment authorization must be reverified in Section 3. Employers should not use E-Verify for reverification. 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 Federal Register 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 USCIS at 888–464–4218 (TTY 877–875– 6028) or email I-9Central@dhs.gov. Calls and emails are accepted in English and many other languages. For questions about avoiding discrimination during the employment eligibility verification process, employers may also call the U.S. Department of Justice, Office of Special Counsel for Immigration-Related Unfair Employment Practices (OSC) Employer Hotline, at 800–255–8155 (TTY 800–237–2515), which offers language interpretation in numerous languages, or email OSC at osccrt@ usdoj.gov. Note to Employees For general questions about the employment eligibility verification process, you may call USCIS at 888– 897–7781 (TTY 877–875–6028) or email I-9Central@dhs.gov. Calls are accepted in English and many other languages. You may also call the OSC Worker Information Hotline at 800–255–7688 (TTY 800–237–2515) for information regarding employment discrimination based upon citizenship status, immigration status, or national origin, including discrimination related to Form I–9 and E-Verify. The OSC Worker Information Hotline provides language interpretation in numerous languages. To comply with the law, employers must accept any document or combination of documents from the Lists of Acceptable Documents if the documentation reasonably appears to be genuine and to relate to the employee, or an acceptable receipt described in the Employment Eligibility Verification (Form I–9) Instructions. Employers may not require extra or additional documentation beyond what is required for Employment Eligibility Verification E:\FR\FM\26SEN1.SGM 26SEN1 Federal Register / Vol. 81, No. 186 / Monday, September 26, 2016 / Notices (Form I–9) completion. Further, employers participating in E-Verify who receive an E-Verify case result of ‘‘Tentative Nonconfirmation’’ (TNC) must promptly inform employees of the TNC and give such employees an opportunity to contest the TNC. A TNC case result means that the information entered into E-Verify from Employment Eligibility Verification (Form I–9) differs from Federal or State government records. Employers may not terminate, suspend, delay training, withhold pay, lower pay, or take any adverse action against you based on your decision to contest a TNC or because the case is still pending with E-Verify. A Final Nonconfirmation (FNC) case result is received when E-Verify cannot verify your employment eligibility. An employer may terminate employment based on a case result of FNC. Workauthorized employees who receive an FNC may call USCIS for assistance at 888–897–7781 (TTY 877–875–6028). If you believe you were discriminated against by an employer in the E-Verify process based on citizenship, immigration status, or national origin, you may contact OSC’s Worker Information Hotline at 800–255–7688 (TTY 800–237–2515). Additional information about proper nondiscriminatory Employment Eligibility Verification (Form I–9) and EVerify procedures 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. mstockstill on DSK3G9T082PROD with NOTICES 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 unexpired EAD; (2) A copy of this Federal Register Notice if your EAD is automatically extended under this Notice; (3) A copy of your Application for Temporary Protected Status Notice of Action (Form I–797); VerDate Sep<11>2014 19:40 Sep 23, 2016 Jkt 238001 (4) A copy of your past or current Application for Temporary Protected Status Approval Notice (Form I–797), if you received one from USCIS; and/or (5) If there is an automatic extension of work authorization, a copy of the fact sheet from the USCIS TPS Web site that provides information on the automatic extension. Check with the government agency regarding which document(s) the agency will accept. You may also provide the agency with a copy of this Federal Register Notice. Some benefit-granting agencies use the USCIS Systematic Alien Verification for Entitlements Program (SAVE) to confirm the current immigration status of applicants for public benefits. In most cases, SAVE provides an automated electronic response to benefit granting agencies within seconds but occasionally verification can be delayed. You can check the status of your SAVE verification by using CaseCheck at the following link: https://save.uscis.gov/ casecheck/, then by clicking the ‘‘Check Your Case’’ button. CaseCheck is a free service that lets you follow the progress of your SAVE verification using your date of birth and one immigration identifier number. 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 to correct records under the Freedom of Information Act can be found at the SAVE Web site at http://www.uscis.gov/ save, then by choosing ‘‘For Benefit Applicants’’ from the menu on the left and selecting ‘‘Questions about your Records?’’. [FR Doc. 2016–23244 Filed 9–22–16; 4:15 pm] BILLING CODE 9111–97–P PO 00000 Frm 00075 Fmt 4703 Sfmt 4703 66069 DEPARTMENT OF HOUSING AND URBAN DEVELOPMENT [Docket No. FR–5919–N–01] 60-Day Notice of Proposed Information Collection: Notice of Proposed Information Collection for Public Comment; Electronic Line of Credit Control System (eLOCCS) System Access Office of the Chief Financial Officer, HUD. ACTION: Notice of proposed information collection. AGENCY: The proposed information collection requirement described below will be submitted to the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) for review, as required by the Paperwork Reduction Act. The Department is soliciting public comments on the subject proposal. This information collection is required by the Paperwork Reduction Act of 1995. HUD is soliciting public comments on the subject proposal. DATES: Comments Due: November 25, 2016. SUMMARY: Interested persons are invited to submit comments regarding this proposal. Comments should refer to the proposal by name and/or OMB Control Number and should be sent to: Anna P. Guido, Reports Management Officer, QDAM, Department of Housing and Urban Development, 451 7th Street SW., Room 4176, Washington, DC 20410–5000; telephone 202–402–5534 (this is not a toll-free number) or email at Anna.P.Guido@hud.gov for a copy of the proposed forms or other available information. Persons with hearing or speech impairments may access this number through TTY by calling the tollfree Federal Relay Service at (800) 877– 8339. FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Dan Lam, Management Information Specialist, FYA, Department of Housing and Urban Development, 451 7th Street SW., Room 3204, Washington, DC 20410; email Dan Lam at Dan.Lam@ hud.gov or telephone 202–402–3705. This is not a toll-free number. Persons with hearing or speech impairments may access this number through TTY by calling the toll-free Federal Relay Service at (800) 877–8339. Copies of available documents submitted to OMB may be obtained from Mr. Lam. SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION: This notice informs the public that HUD is seeking approval from OMB for the information collection described in Section A. ADDRESSES: E:\FR\FM\26SEN1.SGM 26SEN1

Agencies

[Federal Register Volume 81, Number 186 (Monday, September 26, 2016)]
[Notices]
[Pages 66064-66069]
From the Federal Register Online via the Government Publishing Office [www.gpo.gov]
[FR Doc No: 2016-23244]


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DEPARTMENT OF HOMELAND SECURITY

U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services

[CIS No. 2587-16; DHS Docket No. USCIS-2014-0010]
RIN 1615-ZB55


Six-Month Extension of Temporary Protected Status Benefits for 
Orderly Transition Before Termination of Guinea's Designation for 
Temporary Protected Status

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

ACTION: Notice.

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SUMMARY: The designation of Guinea for Temporary Protected Status (TPS) 
is set to expire on November 21, 2016. After reviewing country 
conditions and consulting with the appropriate U.S. Government 
(Government) agencies, the Secretary of the Department of Homeland 
Security (Secretary) has determined that conditions in Guinea no longer 
support its designation for TPS and is therefore extending TPS benefits 
for 6 months for the purpose of orderly transition before the TPS 
designation of Guinea terminates. This termination will be effective 
May 21, 2017, 6 months following the end of the current designation.
    To provide for an orderly transition, nationals of Guinea (and 
aliens having no nationality who last habitually resided in Guinea) who 
have been granted TPS under the Guinea designation will automatically 
retain their TPS and have their current tps-based Employment 
Authorization Documents (EAD) extended through May 20, 2017. However, 
an individual's TPS may still be withdrawn because of ineligibility for 
TPS. On May 21, 2017, nationals of Guinea (and aliens having no 
nationality who last habitually resided in Guinea) who have been 
granted TPS under the Guinea designation will no longer have TPS.

DATES: The designation of Guinea for TPS is terminated effective at 
12:01 a.m., local time, on May 21, 2017.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT:
     For further information on TPS, please visit the U.S. 
Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) TPS Web page at http://www.uscis.gov/tps. You can find specific information about the 
termination of Guinea's TPS designation by selecting ``Guinea'' from 
the menu on the left side of the TPS Web page.
     You can also contact Jerry Rigdon, Chief of the Waivers 
and Temporary Services 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 inquires.
     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).
     Further information will also be available at local USCIS 
offices upon publication of this Notice.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

Table of Abbreviations

DHS--Department of Homeland Security
DOS--Department of State
EAD--Employment Authorization Document
EVD--Ebola Virus Disease
FNC--Final Nonconfirmation
Government--U.S. Government
INA--Immigration and Nationality Act
OSC--Department of Justice, Office of Special Counsel for 
Immigration-Related Unfair Employment Practices
SAVE--USCIS Systematic Alien Verification for Entitlements Program
Secretary--Secretary of Homeland Security
TNC--Tentative Nonconfirmation
TPS--Temporary Protected Status
TTY--Text Telephone
USCIS--U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services
WHO--World Health Organization

What is Temporary Protected Status (TPS)?

     TPS is a temporary immigration status granted to eligible 
nationals of a

[[Page 66065]]

country designated for TPS under the Immigration and Nationality Act 
(INA), or to eligible 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, may not be removed, and are 
authorized to work and obtain EADs so long as they continue to meet the 
requirements of TPS.
     TPS beneficiaries may also be granted travel authorization 
as a matter of discretion.
     The granting of TPS does not result in or lead to 
permanent resident status.
     To qualify for TPS, beneficiaries must meet the 
eligibility criteria described in INA section 244(c), 8 U.S.C. 1254a(c) 
and 8 CFR part 244.
     When the Secretary terminates a country's TPS designation, 
beneficiaries return to the same immigration status they maintained 
before TPS, if any (unless that status has since expired or been 
terminated), or to any other immigration status they lawfully obtained 
while registered for TPS.

When was Guinea designated for TPS?

    On November 21, 2014, the Secretary designated Guinea for TPS for a 
period of 18 months due to the extraordinary and temporary conditions 
caused by an epidemic of Ebola Virus Disease (EVD) in West Africa that 
prevented nationals of Guinea from returning to Guinea in safety. The 
conditions included high EVD transmission rates in wide-spread 
geographic areas, overwhelmed health care systems unable to handle the 
large number of EVD patients or to provide treatment for normally 
preventable or treatable conditions, and containment measures that were 
causing significant disruptions to Guinea's economy and individuals' 
ability to access food and earn a livelihood. See Designation of Guinea 
for Temporary Protected Status, 79 FR 69511 (Nov. 21, 2014). The 
Secretary last announced a 6-month extension of TPS for Guinea on March 
22, 2016, based on his determination that although there were 
significant improvements, conditions supporting the designation 
persisted. See Extension of the Designation of Guinea for Temporary 
Protected Status, 81 FR 15339 (Mar. 22, 2016).

What authority does the Secretary have to terminate the designation of 
Guinea 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 if the Secretary 
determines that certain country conditions exist.\1\ The Secretary may 
then grant TPS to eligible nationals of that foreign state (or eligible 
aliens having no nationality who last habitually resided in the 
designated country). See INA section 244(a)(1)(A), 8 U.S.C. 
1254a(a)(1)(A).
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    \1\ As of March 1, 2003, in accordance with section 1517 of 
title XV of the Homeland Security Act of 2002, 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 (DHS) ``shall be 
deemed to refer to the Secretary'' of Homeland Security. See 6 
U.S.C. 557 (codifying the Homeland Security Act of 2002, tit. XV, 
section 1517).
---------------------------------------------------------------------------

    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 INA section 
244(b)(3)(A), 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 may be extended for an additional period of 6, 12, or 
18 months. See INA section 244(b)(3)(C), 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, but such termination may not take effect earlier than 60 
days after the date the Federal Register notice of termination is 
published, or if later, the expiration of the most recent previous 
extension of the country designation. See INA section 244(b)(3)(B), 8 
U.S.C. 1254a(b)(3)(B). The Secretary may determine the appropriate 
effective date of the termination and the expiration of any TPS-related 
documentation, such as EADs, for the purpose of providing an orderly 
transition. See id.; INA section 244(d)(3), 8 U.S.C. 1254a(d)(3).

Why is the Secretary terminating the designation of Guinea for TPS as 
of May 21, 2017, after a 6-month extension of TPS benefits for the 
purpose of orderly transition?

    DHS and the Department of State (DOS) have reviewed conditions in 
Guinea. Based on the reviews and after consulting with DOS, the 
Secretary has determined that the termination of the TPS designation of 
Guinea, after a 6-month extension of TPS benefits for orderly 
transition, is required because the extraordinary and temporary 
conditions that prompted Guinea's designation for TPS have 
substantially resolved and no longer prevent nationals of Guinea from 
returning in safety.
    Guinea, Liberia, and Sierra Leone were designated for TPS in the 
midst of the largest EVD outbreak in history. From March 2014 through 
November 2015, these three countries suffered over 11,000 deaths among 
their more than 28,500 cases of EVD. At the height of the outbreak in 
late 2014, Ebola was spreading rapidly, with hundreds of new cases 
being reported each week, the health care systems overwhelmed, and 
containment measures causing significant disruptions to individuals' 
ability to access food and earn a livelihood. While the impacts of the 
epidemic pose a lasting challenge to Guinea's economy and the capacity 
of its health system to provide treatment for preventable or treatable 
conditions, at this time, the EVD epidemic has subsided, and conditions 
have improved since the Secretary initially designated Guinea for TPS.
    A robust response by the international community and the 
governments of Guinea, Liberia, and Sierra Leone has brought the EVD 
epidemic in West Africa under control and begun the long-term work of 
rebuilding regional economies and health systems. Guinea was initially 
declared Ebola-free on December 29, 2015, by the World Health 
Organization (WHO). On March 29, 2016, the WHO Director-General 
declared the end of the Public Health Emergency of International 
Concern regarding the EVD outbreak in West Africa. In conjunction with 
ending the public health emergency, the WHO emphasized that there 
should be no restrictions on travel and trade with Guinea, Liberia, and 
Sierra Leone. As of June 2016, the WHO declared Guinea free of Ebola 
transmission. A country is considered free of EVD transmission after 42 
days have passed since the last known person in the country with EVD 
receives a second consecutive negative blood test for the virus. As of 
August 31, 2016, Guinea had completed a 90-day period of enhanced 
surveillance for EVD following the declaration that it was free of EVD 
transmission. While the risk of flare-ups of EVD remains, efforts are 
underway to promote, over time, robust prevention, surveillance, and 
response capacity across all three countries.
    The Guinean government has established response and containment 
measures to detect the movement of symptomatic persons and conducts in-
home monitoring of those who have been exposed to EVD. Guineans return 
daily from travel abroad, and airlines are operating almost at 
capacity. While health systems and facilities remain

[[Page 66066]]

fragile, medical centers are no longer overwhelmed by patients with 
EVD. High rates of child mortality both before and since the EVD 
epidemic are indicative of the overall fragility of the health system. 
Although this is comparable to other countries in the region, systems 
in Guinea must also be able to address ongoing issues of trust between 
healthcare facilities and communities, as well as continue to care for 
Ebola survivors who have a series of ongoing and previously unforeseen 
health conditions, both of which will continue to exacerbate and 
underscore the fragility of these systems. There are no parts of the 
country that should be avoided because of the virus. Normal business 
activity and national life have largely resumed, although work is 
ongoing to rebuild Guinea's economy and health care system. The U.S. 
Department of Health and Human Services, Centers for Disease Control 
and Prevention has no Travel Health Notice in place for Guinea related 
to Ebola as of the date of this Notice.
    Based upon this review and after consultation with appropriate 
Government agencies, the Secretary has determined that Guinea no longer 
continues to meet the statutorily required conditions for a TPS 
designation on the basis of extraordinary and temporary conditions, 
because the extraordinary and temporary conditions that prompted 
Guinea's TPS designation have substantially resolved and no longer 
prevent nationals of Guinea from returning to Guinea in safety. 
Therefore, after a 6-month extension of TPS benefits for orderly 
transition, the Secretary is terminating the TPS designation of Guinea 
effective at 12:01 a.m., local time, on May 21, 2017. See INA section 
244(b)(3)(B), 8 U.S.C. 1254a(b)(3)(B).
    To provide for an orderly transition, individuals who have been 
granted TPS under Guinea's designation will automatically retain TPS 
and have their current EADs extended until the termination date. See 
INA section 244(d)(3), 8 U.S.C. 1254a(d)(3). DHS may, however, withdraw 
TPS from any beneficiary who fails to continue meeting the requirements 
for TPS. See INA section 244(c)(3), 8 U.S.C. 1254a(c)(3). There are 
approximately 930 current Guinea TPS beneficiaries. These persons are 
urged to use the time before termination of their TPS to prepare for 
and arrange their departure from the United States or, in the 
alternative, to apply for other immigration benefits for which they are 
eligible.

Notice of Six-Month Extension of TPS Benefits for Orderly Transition 
Before Termination of the TPS Designation of Guinea

    By the authority vested in me as Secretary under INA section 244, 8 
U.S.C. 1254a, I have determined, after consultation with the 
appropriate Government agencies, that Guinea no longer meets the 
conditions for designation of TPS under INA section 244(b)(1). 8 U.S.C. 
1254a(b)(1).
    Accordingly, I order as follows:
    (1) Pursuant to INA section 244(b)(3)(B), the designation of Guinea 
for TPS is terminated effective at 12:01 a.m., local time on May 21, 
2017, 6 months following the end of the current designation.
    (2) DHS estimates that there are approximately 930 nationals of 
Guinea (and aliens having no nationality who last habitually resided in 
Guinea) who currently receive TPS benefits.
    (3) To provide for an orderly transition, nationals of Guinea (and 
aliens having no nationality who last habitually resided in Guinea) who 
have been granted TPS under the Guinea designation will automatically 
retain TPS until the May 21, 2017, termination date. However, an 
individual's TPS may be withdrawn prior to this date under INA section 
244(c)(3) and 8 CFR 244.14 because of ineligibility for TPS.
    (4) TPS-based EADs that expire on November 21, 2016, are extended 
automatically through May 20, 2017, for qualified nationals of Guinea 
(and aliens having no nationality who last habitually resided in 
Guinea).
    (5) Information concerning the termination of TPS for nationals of 
Guinea (and aliens having no nationality who last habitually resided in 
Guinea) will be available at local USCIS offices upon publication of 
this Notice and through the USCIS National Customer Service Center at 
1-800-375-5283. This information will be published on the USCIS Web 
site at www.USCIS.gov.

Jeh Charles Johnson,
Secretary.

If I currently have TPS under Guinea's designation, do I need to re-
register to keep my TPS until May 21, 2017, the termination date?

    No. If you already have been granted TPS benefits through the 
Guinea TPS program, you do not have to re-register to keep your TPS 
benefits. You will automatically retain TPS until the termination date. 
However, your TPS may still be withdrawn under INA section 244(c)(3) 
and 8 CFR part 244 because of ineligibility for TPS. 8 U.S.C. 
1254a(c)(3), 8 CFR 244.14. When termination becomes effective on May 
21, 2017, you will no longer have TPS.

Why is the Secretary automatically extending the validity of EADs from 
November 21, 2016, through May 20, 2017?

    The Secretary has decided to extend automatically the validity of 
EADs to provide for an orderly transition leading up to the effective 
date for the termination of the Guinea TPS designation. Therefore, the 
validity of the applicable EADs is extended for a period of 6 months, 
through May 20, 2017. 8 U.S.C. 1254a(a)(2) and (d)(3).

Must qualified individuals apply for the automatic extension of their 
TPS-Related EADs through May 20, 2017?

    No. Qualified individuals do not have to apply for this extension 
of their TPS-related EADs through May 20, 2017.

What may I do if I believe that returning to Guinea is not possible or 
preferable for Me?

    This Notice terminates the designation of Guinea for TPS. Nationals 
of Guinea (and aliens having no nationality who last habitually resided 
in Guinea) in the United States who believe returning to Guinea is not 
possible or preferable for them may be eligible to apply for another 
immigration status, such as lawful permanent residence, asylum, or a 
nonimmigrant status. Eligibility for these and other immigration 
benefits is determined individually on a case-by-case basis. For 
information about eligibility and how to apply, visit the USCIS Web 
site at www.USCIS.gov or call the USCIS National Customer Service 
Center at 1-800-375-5283.

How does the termination of TPS affect my immigration status and what 
can I do?

    After the termination of the TPS designation of Guinea becomes 
effective on May 21, 2017, former TPS beneficiaries will maintain the 
same immigration status they held before TPS (unless the status has 
since expired or been terminated) or any other status they may have 
acquired while registered for TPS. Accordingly, if a TPS beneficiary 
held no lawful immigration status before being granted TPS and did not 
obtain any other status during the TPS period, he or she may be subject 
to removal upon the termination of the TPS designation. TPS-related 
EADs will expire on May 20, 2017, and will not be renewed.
    Termination of the TPS designation for Guinea does not necessarily 
affect

[[Page 66067]]

pending applications for other forms of immigration status, relief or 
protection. However, former TPS beneficiaries will begin to accrue 
unlawful presence as of May 21, 2017, if they have not been granted any 
other immigration status, relief, protection, or authorization to 
remain in the United States.

Employment Authorization Document (EAD)

How can I obtain information on the status of my EAD request?

    To get case status information about your request for an EAD, you 
can check Case Status Online at http://www.uscis.gov, or call the USCIS 
National Customer Service Center at 800-375-5283 (TTY 800-767-1833). If 
your Application for Employment Authorization (Form I-765) has been 
pending for more than 90 days, and you still need assistance, you may 
request an EAD inquiry appointment with USCIS by using the InfoPass 
system at https://infopass.uscis.gov. However, we strongly encourage 
you first to check Case Status Online or call the USCIS National 
Customer Service Center for assistance before making an InfoPass 
appointment.

Am I eligible to receive an automatic 6-month extension of my current 
EAD through May 20, 2017?

    Provided that you currently have TPS under the designation of 
Guinea, this Notice automatically extends your EAD by 6 months if you:
     Are a national of Guinea (or an alien having no 
nationality who last habitually resided in Guinea);
     Received an EAD under the designation of Guinea for TPS; 
and
     Have an EAD with a marked expiration date of November 21, 
2016, bearing the notation ``A-12'' or ``C-19'' on the face of the card 
under ``Category.''

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 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 being hired, you 
must present proof of identity and employment authorization to your 
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.'' Or you may present an acceptable receipt for a List 
A, List B, or List C document as described in the Form I-9 
Instructions. An acceptable receipt includes a document that shows an 
employee has applied to replace a required document that was lost, 
stolen, or damaged. If you present an acceptable receipt for the 
application of a replacement document, you must present your employer 
with the actual document within 90 days. Employers may not reject a 
document based on a future expiration date.
    If your EAD has an expiration date of November 21, 2016, and states 
``A-12'' or ``C-19'' under ``Category,'' it has been extended 
automatically for 6 months by virtue of this Federal Register Notice 
and you may choose to present your EAD to your employer as proof of 
identity and employment authorization for Form I-9 through May 20, 2017 
(see the subsection titled ``How do my employer and I complete the 
Employment Eligibility Verification (Form I-9) using an automatically 
extended EAD for a new job?'' for further information). To minimize 
confusion over this extension at the time of hire, you should explain 
to your employer that USCIS has automatically extended your EAD through 
May 20, 2017. You may also show your employer a copy of this Federal 
Register Notice confirming the automatic extension of employment 
authorization through May 20, 2017. As an alternative to presenting 
your automatically extended EAD, you may choose to present any other 
acceptable document from List A, a combination of one selection from 
List B and one selection from List C, or a valid receipt.

What documentation may I show my employer if I am already employed but 
my current TPS-related EAD is set to expire?

    Even though EADs with an expiration date of November 21, 2016, that 
state ``A-12'' or ``C-19'' under ``Category'' have been automatically 
extended for 6 months by this Federal Register Notice, your employer 
will need to ask you about your continued employment authorization once 
November 21, 2016, is reached to meet its responsibilities for 
Employment Eligibility Verification (Form I-9). Your employer may need 
to re-inspect your automatically extended EAD to check the expiration 
date and code to record the updated expiration date on your Employment 
Eligibility Verification (Form I-9) if he or she did not keep a copy of 
this EAD at the time you initially presented it. You and your employer 
must make corrections to the employment authorization expiration dates 
in Section 1 and Section 2 of Employment Eligibility Verification (Form 
I-9) (see the subsection titled ``What corrections should my current 
employer and I make to Employment Eligibility Verification (Form I-9) 
if my EAD has been automatically extended?'' for further information). 
You are also strongly encouraged, although not required, to show this 
Federal Register Notice to your employer to explain what to do for 
Employment Eligibility Verification (Form I-9).
    By May 20, 2017, the expiration date of the automatic extension, 
your employer must reverify your employment authorization. If you are 
employment authorized beyond the expiration date of the automatic 
extension, you must present any unexpired document from List A or any 
unexpired document from List C on Form I-9 to reverify employment 
authorization, or an acceptable List A or List C receipt described in 
the Employment Eligibility Verification (Form I-9) instructions. Your 
employer is required to reverify on Employment Eligibility Verification 
(Form I-9) the employment authorization of current employees no later 
than the automatically extended expiration date of a TPS-related EAD, 
which is May 20, 2017, in this case. Your employer should use either 
Section 3 of the Employment Eligibility Verification (Form I-9) 
originally completed for you or, if this section has already been 
completed or if the version of Form I-9 is no longer valid (check the 
date in the upper right-hand corner of the form), complete Section 3 of 
a new Employment Eligibility Verification (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, and cannot reject an 
acceptable receipt. An acceptable receipt is described in the 
Employment Eligibility Verification (Form I-9) Instructions and 
includes one that shows an employee has applied to replace a required 
document that was lost, stolen or damaged.

Can my employer require that I produce any other documentation to prove 
my current TPS status, such as proof of my Guinean citizenship?

    No. When completing Employment Eligibility Verification (Form I-9), 
including reverifying employment

[[Page 66068]]

authorization, employers must accept any documentation that appears on 
the ``Lists of Acceptable Documents'' for Employment Eligibility 
Verification (Form I-9) that reasonably appears to be genuine and that 
relates to you or an acceptable List A, List B, or List C receipt. 
Employers may not request documentation that does not appear on the 
``Lists of Acceptable Documents.'' Therefore, employers may not request 
proof of Guinean citizenship or proof of re-registration for TPS when 
completing Employment Eligibility Verification (Form I-9) for new hires 
or reverifying the employment authorization of current employees. Refer 
to the ``Note to Employees'' section of this Notice 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.

What happens after May 20, 2017, for purposes of employment 
authorization?

    After May 20, 2017, employers may no longer accept the EADs that 
this Federal Register Notice automatically extended.

How do my employer and I complete Employment Eligibility Verification 
(Form I-9) using an automatically extended EAD for a new job?

    When using an automatically extended EAD to complete Employment 
Eligibility Verification (Form I-9) for a new job before May 21, 2017, 
you and your employer should do the following:
    1. For Section 1, you should:
    a. Check ``An alien authorized to work;''
    b. Write the automatically extended EAD expiration date (May 20, 
2017) in the first space; and
    c. Write your alien number (USCIS number or A-number) in the second 
space (your EAD or other document from DHS will have your USCIS number 
or A-number printed on it; the USCIS number is the same as your A-
number without the A prefix).
    2. For Section 2, employers should record the:
    a. Document title;
    b. Issuing authority;
    c. Document number; and
    d. Automatically extended EAD expiration date (May 20, 2017).
    No later than May 20, 2017, employers must reverify your employment 
authorization in Section 3 of Employment Eligibility Verification (Form 
I-9).

What corrections should my current employer and I make to Employment 
Eligibility Verification (Form I-9) if my EAD has been automatically 
extended?

    If you are an existing employee who presented a TPS-related EAD 
that was valid when you first started your job, but that EAD has now 
been automatically extended, your employer may need to reinspect your 
automatically extended EAD if your employer does not have a photocopy 
of the EAD on file, and you and your employer should correct your 
previously completed Form I-9 as follows:
    1. For Section 1, you should:
    a. Draw a line through the expiration date in the first space;
    b. Write ``May 20, 2017,'' above the previous date;
    c. Write ``TPS Ext.'' in the margin of Section 1; and
    d. Initial and date the correction in the margin of Section 1.
    2. For Section 2, employers should:
    a. Draw a line through the expiration date written in Section 2;
    b. Write ``May 20, 2017,'' above the previous date;
    c. Write ``EAD Ext.'' in the margin of Section 2; and
    d. Initial and date the correction in the margin of Section 2.
    No later than May 20, 2017, when the automatic extension of EADs 
expires, employers must reverify your employment authorization in 
Section 3.

As an employer, what are my Employment Eligibility Verification (Form 
I-9) obligations after May 20, 2017?

    Employers are required to reverify an employee's employment 
authorization in Section 3 of Employment Eligibility Verification (Form 
I-9) by the expiration date of an automatically extended EAD. Your 
employee must present unexpired documentation from either List A or 
List C (or an acceptable Form I-9 receipt) showing he or she is still 
authorized to work. Employers may not ask for specific documents; 
employees choose which List A or List C documents to present from the 
Lists of Acceptable Documents.

If I am an employer enrolled in E-Verify, what do I do when I receive a 
``Work Authorization Documents Expiration'' alert for an automatically 
extended EAD?

    If you have an employee who is a TPS beneficiary who provided a 
TPS-related EAD when he or she first started working for you, you will 
receive a ``Work Authorization Documents Expiring'' case alert when the 
auto-extension period for this EAD is about to expire. E-Verify will 
not send an alert for the original November 21, 2016, expiration date. 
By May 20, 2017, employment authorization must be reverified in Section 
3. Employers should not use E-Verify for reverification.

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 Federal Register 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 USCIS 
at 888-464-4218 (TTY 877-875-6028) or email I-9Central@dhs.gov. Calls 
and emails are accepted in English and many other languages. For 
questions about avoiding discrimination during the employment 
eligibility verification process, employers may also call the U.S. 
Department of Justice, Office of Special Counsel for Immigration-
Related Unfair Employment Practices (OSC) Employer Hotline, at 800-255-
8155 (TTY 800-237-2515), which offers language interpretation in 
numerous languages, or email OSC at osccrt@usdoj.gov.

Note to Employees

    For general questions about the employment eligibility verification 
process, you may call USCIS at 888-897-7781 (TTY 877-875-6028) or email 
I-9Central@dhs.gov. Calls are accepted in English and many other 
languages. You may also call the OSC Worker Information Hotline at 800-
255-7688 (TTY 800-237-2515) for information regarding employment 
discrimination based upon citizenship status, immigration status, or 
national origin, including discrimination related to Form I-9 and E-
Verify. The OSC Worker Information Hotline provides language 
interpretation in numerous languages.
    To comply with the law, employers must accept any document or 
combination of documents from the Lists of Acceptable Documents if the 
documentation reasonably appears to be genuine and to relate to the 
employee, or an acceptable receipt described in the Employment 
Eligibility Verification (Form I-9) Instructions. Employers may not 
require extra or additional documentation beyond what is required for 
Employment Eligibility Verification

[[Page 66069]]

(Form I-9) completion. Further, employers participating in E-Verify who 
receive an E-Verify case result of ``Tentative Nonconfirmation'' (TNC) 
must promptly inform employees of the TNC and give such employees an 
opportunity to contest the TNC. A TNC case result means that the 
information entered into E-Verify from Employment Eligibility 
Verification (Form I-9) differs from Federal or State government 
records.
    Employers may not terminate, suspend, delay training, withhold pay, 
lower pay, or take any adverse action against you based on your 
decision to contest a TNC or because the case is still pending with E-
Verify. A Final Nonconfirmation (FNC) case result is received when E-
Verify cannot verify your employment eligibility. An employer may 
terminate employment based on a case result of FNC. Work-authorized 
employees who receive an FNC may call USCIS for assistance at 888-897-
7781 (TTY 877-875-6028). If you believe you were discriminated against 
by an employer in the E-Verify process based on citizenship, 
immigration status, or national origin, you may contact OSC's Worker 
Information Hotline at 800-255-7688 (TTY 800-237-2515). Additional 
information about proper nondiscriminatory Employment Eligibility 
Verification (Form I-9) and E-Verify procedures 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 unexpired EAD;
    (2) A copy of this Federal Register Notice if your EAD is 
automatically extended under this Notice;
    (3) A copy of your Application for Temporary Protected Status 
Notice of Action (Form I-797);
    (4) A copy of your past or current Application for Temporary 
Protected Status Approval Notice (Form I-797), if you received one from 
USCIS; and/or
    (5) If there is an automatic extension of work authorization, a 
copy of the fact sheet from the USCIS TPS Web site that provides 
information on the automatic extension.
    Check with the government agency regarding which document(s) the 
agency will accept. You may also provide the agency with a copy of this 
Federal Register Notice.
    Some benefit-granting agencies use the USCIS Systematic Alien 
Verification for Entitlements Program (SAVE) to confirm the current 
immigration status of applicants for public benefits. In most cases, 
SAVE provides an automated electronic response to benefit granting 
agencies within seconds but occasionally verification can be delayed. 
You can check the status of your SAVE verification by using CaseCheck 
at the following link: https://save.uscis.gov/casecheck/, then by 
clicking the ``Check Your Case'' button. CaseCheck is a free service 
that lets you follow the progress of your SAVE verification using your 
date of birth and one immigration identifier number. 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 to correct records under the Freedom of Information Act can be 
found at the SAVE Web site at http://www.uscis.gov/save, then by 
choosing ``For Benefit Applicants'' from the menu on the left and 
selecting ``Questions about your Records?''.

[FR Doc. 2016-23244 Filed 9-22-16; 4:15 pm]
BILLING CODE 9111-97-P