The Russian invasion of Ukraine has highlighted the plight of refugees—over ten million have fled the country since the invasion began. With the attention on those who are fleeing, many forget that there are Ukrainians residing in the United States on visas. What happens when those visas expire, or they’re otherwise required to go home? Will they be forced to return to a war-torn country in ongoing conflict, or can they stay in the United States indefinitely? SixFifty is helping them find refuge in the United States via a Ukrainian TPS (Temporary Protected Status) and asylum solution.
SixFifty’s goal has always been to make the law accessible to everyone. We’re proud to announce that we’ve used our innovative legal technology to automate Ukrainian Temporary Protected Status (TPS) and asylum applications. We want to make sure that Ukrainians residing in America have easy access to free legal help, and it starts by simplifying Department of Homeland Security (DHS) TPS for Ukraine refugees.
Complex applications and language barriers
Unfortunately, returning home is impossible for most Ukrainians, even if they wanted to. “Going home isn’t an option for Ukrainians right now,” says Kimball Parker, CEO of SixFifty. “Tens of thousands of Ukrainians will need to apply for TPS or asylum over the next several months in order to stay in the U.S. SixFifty is hoping to alleviate the stress of applying during what is surely one of the most challenging moments in their lives.”
Not every Ukrainian in the U.S. can read and speak English fluently, especially when it comes to complicated immigration applications. To remain in the country legally, many will need assistance. Language and financial status shouldn’t be a barrier.
That’s where SixFifty comes in.
SixFifty’s Ukrainian TPS and asylum solutions
Because TPS and asylum applications are complex and available in English only, we’ve automated the application process to assist Ukrainian applicants, while providing translation as a courtesy. The goal is to make the Ukrainian Homeland Security Visa extension as simple and stress-free as possible.
We worked with the Refugee Justice League, immigration attorneys from Wilson Sonsini and other immigration experts to ensure that the tool would be an asset to Ukrainians facing the TPS or asylum application process. Our TPS and asylum tools ask several questions in English and Ukrainian, which will help populate the application information. Built-in translation is intended to make it easier for applicants (or their interpreter) to understand the legal complexities of the application.
Based on responses, our legal tools fill out the application documents, then email a copy to the user with further instructions. The Ukrainian TPS extension application also helps fill out a work authorization form and an attorney representation form.
Ukrainians in the U.S. can use SixFifty’s free TPS and asylum application tools themselves, but we recommend working with an attorney to review and submit all paperwork. This is especially true for asylum status, where application is the first step in a process that can take years.
“I have friends and family who need to apply for TPS or asylum to stay in the United States, including my mother,” says Kateryna Kravchenko, a Ukrainian citizen who is studying linguistics at Brigham Young University and has helped with the translation of SixFifty’s tool. “This free tool gives me comfort that they can find a way to stay in the United States legally.”
Wondering how to apply for TPS Ukraine?
SixFifty works with the law firm Wilson Sonsini to automate employment and privacy paperwork for companies across the United States. Our legal technology pairs legal expertise from some of the nation’s top lawyers with the convenience automation. This empowers businesses and individuals to save time and money on hiring outside counsel.
Our work doesn’t stop there. We take pride in giving back to the community however we can. SixFifty uses the proceeds from our paid legal products to build free tools for people who need legal help. For example, during the COVID-19 pandemic, SixFifty helped tens of thousands of people to avoid eviction and foreclosure for free through www.hellolandlord.org and www.hellolender.org. Our TPS and asylum application tools are our first product helping people with immigration law issues.
Since the war began, pro bono volunteers at Wilson Sonsini have been hard at work, assisting in developing the TPS and asylum application product. Their legal research and input have been invaluable in creating this free tool for Ukrainians in the U.S.
“We are currently being flooded with requests from various Ukrainian communities seeking legal help,” said Jeffrey O’Brien, Founding Partner at O’Brien Immigration, one of our partners for this offering. “Using SixFifty’s tools will allow us to help Ukrainians apply more efficiently.”
The law is for everyone. It belongs to us all, like libraries and parks. SixFifty’s commitment to building free tools for those who can’t afford legal help has never been stronger. SixFifty’s free TPS and asylum tools can be found at www.sixfifty.com/ukraine. We will continue to support temporary protected status for Ukraine + Ukrainian Nationals.
Sign up for our webinar
Want to learn more about how SixFifty’s new tool will help Ukrainians and lawyers simplify and expedite the process of applying for Temporary Protected Status (TPS) or asylum? Sign up for our webinar on April 6, where we’ll walk through the tool and the legal landscape surrounding the current situation. Sign up here.
Written by Kimball Parker
(he/him) Kimball Dean Parker is the CEO of SixFifty and the Director of LawX, the legal design lab at BYU Law School. He created SixFifty and LawX with the desire to improve the public’s access to the law. His projects have spanned making employment law easier for businesses to helping people respond to debt collection lawsuits. In all, SixFifty and...
Full Bio and other articles by Kimball Parker