On April 9, 2014 the United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) issued an update concerning DACA renewals. DACA, or Deferred Action for Childhood Process, constitutes a procedure put in place in 2012 by the Obama Administration to address the issue of deportation of children who have spent most of their lives in the United States having been brought to the country through no fault of their own. DACA has been utilized by approximately 800,000 children.
Those who can apply for DACA include:
- Those under the age of 31 on June 15, 2012
- Arrived to the United States before reaching their 16th birthday
- Continuously resided in the United States from June 15, 2007 (last five years) to the present
- Been physically present in the United States on June 15, 2012, as well as at the time of requesting deferred action from USCIS;
- Entered without inspection before June 15, 2012, or had any lawful immigration status expired on or before June 15, 2012
- Been in school at the time of application, or have already graduated or obtained a certificate of completion from high school, or have obtained a general education development (GED) certificate, or are an honorably discharged veteran of the U.S. Coast Guard or the U.S. Armed Forces
- Not been convicted of a felony, significant misdemeanor, or three or more other misdemeanors, and do not otherwise pose a threat to national security or public safety.
Initially applicants could only apply for temporary work status for 2 years beginning in September 2012. Now the USCIS has announced plans to accept applications for renewal for 2 more years commencing in September 2014.
In order to file for renewal, applicants will need to submit a revised version of Form I-821D, a final draft of which is still subject to notice and comments from the public before it will be completed. Furthermore, the revised Form I-821D will need to be submitted along with Form I-765, Application for Employment Authorization and I-765WS, Worksheet, as in the initial filing. The submission must be made 120 days before the expiration of the applicant’s current DACA period. Also it will be necessary to append new documents pertaining to removal proceedings or criminal history that have not already submitted to USCIS.
In the meantime, it is critical, in the event that reform does become law that the immigration attorneys in this country be prepared for the new category of cases any new law is likely to generate. Edward Shulman, Esq, founder of The Shulman Law Group, LLC is a national speaker for the American Immigration Lawyers Association (AILA). AILA is the national association of immigration lawyers established to promote justice, advocate for fair and reasonable immigration law and policy, and to advance the quality of immigration and nationality law and practice. In the course of Mr. Shulman's involvement with AILA, he has been dedicated to educating other immigration lawyers about the import of helping intending immigrants to navigate a new cultural system. He meticulously follows all of the developments occurring in the battle over immigration reform so that he will be prepared to effectively assist his clients obtain residency if a new system is enacted.