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DACA

There has been an ongoing debate on how to help immigrant children who arrived in the United States at a very young age, are currently here illegally, but have been in the country for so long that this is essentially their only home.

In response, our government started the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) in 2012 for those who 1) entered the United States before June 15, 2007, 2) were under the age of 16 at the time of their entry, 3) were physically present in the United States on June 15, 2012 and 4) were under the age of 31, had graduated high school, college, obtained a GED, or were in the process of pursing their education, and did not commit certain disqualifying crimes.  Those who applied and were granted DACA were given a work permit valid for 2 years, which could be renewed, and they could not be deported or removed from the United States so long as they held the status.

On September 5, 2017, the DACA program was suspended for new cases.  Even though a Supreme Court decision on DACA was issued on June 18, 2020, stating that the DHS’ attempt to rescind DACA was “arbitrary and capricious”, and a Federal Court decision issued a few weeks later required that USCIS accept initial DACA applications, USCIS released an announcement on July 29, 2020 regarding the following: 1) No new DACA applicants will be accepted by USCIS, 2) The period of deferred action is reduced to 1 year (instead of 2 which it was before) and 3) No advanced parole will be issued to those with DACA. Those who previously held DACA and continue to maintain DACA without allowing it to lapse can continue to renew their applications for a new one-year period, but those who met the general requirements and had not previously applied are still not eligible to apply.

USCIS Denies Initial DACA Applications Even After SCOTUS Decision

There still may be options for those who are eligible for DACA or who currently have DACA, so consulting with an attorney at Bashyam Shah Immigration Law Group will help you understand your options if you currently have DACA, had DACA and did not renew it, or met the general requirements but never held the status.