In the wake of the catastrophic earthquake of Nepal, which devastated the mountainous Asian nation on April 25th, lawmakers in the United States have introduced legislative proposals that seek to provide immigration relief to Nepalis in this country.
Just three days after the deadly seismic disturbance, two Democratic Members of the House of Representatives introduced a bill to grant Temporary Protected Status (TPS) to Nepalese citizens. TPS is a special humanitarian measure that provides temporary relief to immigrants from nations where major disasters or armed conflicts have degraded living conditions to the point of making them dangerous. Under this measure, which was first enacted in 1990, TPS nations must be designated by the Department of Homeland Security (DHS).
The Members of Congress who introduced the bill to grant TPS designation to Nepal are Mike Honda of California and Al Green of Texas. Should the bill pass and be enacted into law, the TPS date would be April 25, and the relief period would last 18 months. Representative Grace Meng, a Democrat from New York, co-signed the bill, and Senator Charles Schumer has asked DHS to take immediate action on the TPS designation.
Immigrants from TPS-designated nations get automatic relief insofar as not having to worry about hasty deportation and removal proceedings; however, they must follow a certain filing process for the purpose of getting benefits such as work permits and identification documents. For this reason, Nepalese immigrants currently in the U.S. should check with immigration law firms as to the status of the above-mentioned legislative proposals. Enacting the law is only the beginning; what follows is a process of filing documents and submitting applications. In some cases, interviews with immigration officials may also be required.
The epicenter of the 7.8 magnitude earthquake was located just outside of the populous capital city of Kathmandu, and it was followed by deadly avalanches that claimed the lives of dozens of climbers who sought to reach the summit Mount of Everest. More than 5,000 bodies have been recovered from the rubble, and emergency officials estimate that more than 10,000 people were significantly injured by the earthquake and it numerous aftershocks.
For more information about temporary protection for Nepalese immigrants currently in the U.S. on temporary work visas, learn more about the protections provided to you by scheduling a free consultation with the professional immigration attorneys at KS Visa Law. Call us at (858) 874-0711 – we’re here to help.