Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA)

On June 15, 2012 Secretary of the Department of Homeland Security Janet Napolitano announced a new policy for certain individuals who were brought to the United States as young children.  This policy seeks to benefit those individuals who do not present a risk to national security or public safety, and meet several key criteria. Those individuals who meet the criteria are to be considered for relief from removal from the country or from entering into removal proceedings and be eligible to receive deferred action for a period of two years, subject to renewal, and also be eligible to apply for work authorization. The criteria is outlined below:

 

DACA Requirements:

 

  • Under the age of 31 on June 15, 2012;

  • Arrived in the United States before turning 16;

  • Continuously resided in the United States from June 15, 2007, to the present;

  • Were physically present in the United States on June 15, 2012;

  • Entered without inspection before June 15, 2012, or any lawful immigration status expired on or before June 15, 2012;

  • Are currently enrolled in school, have graduated or obtained a certificate of completion from high school, have obtained a general education development (GED) certificate, or are honorably discharged veterans of the U.S. Coast Guard or the U.S. Armed Forces;

  • Have not been convicted of a felony, significant misdemeanor, or three or more other misdemeanors occurring on different dates and arising out of different acts, omissions, or schemes of misconduct, and do not otherwise pose a threat to national security or public safety.

 

DACA Benefits:

  • Eligibility to apply for work authorization

  • No unlawful presence accrual

  • Eligibility to renew the DACA benefit after 2 years

 

Determinations are to made on a case-by-case basis and are within the discretion of USCIS, contact our office if you believe you are eligible.