A Closer Look at Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA)
Help for DREAM Applicants
Certain young immigrants can be protected from deportation for two years
at a time through Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA), a policy
created by the Obama administration in June of 2012. On top of being shielded
from the removal process for two years, those whose DACA application is
accepted will also receive a work permit. To apply, you would need to fill out
Form I-821D, as well as
Form I-765 and a worksheet known as
Who can apply for DACA protection?
To be eligible to apply for this, you must be able to prove that you:
- Were 30 years old or younger on June 15, 2012
- Were 15 years old or younger when you first lived in the United States
- Have been living in the U.S. since June 15, 2007 until now (only interrupted
by short visits outside the country)
- Were inside of the U.S. on June 15, 2012 and on the day you applied for DACA
- Came into the U.S. without inspection before June 15, 2012, or with inspection
but your visa or immigration status expired by June 15, 2012
- Are attending school, have graduated, or have earned a certificate of completion
from an accredited high school or a GED certificate, OR you are a veteran
who has been honorably discharged from the U.S. Coast Guard or Armed Forces
- Do not have a conviction of a felony, significant misdemeanor, or more
than two misdemeanors on your record, and do not pose a threat to the
public's safety (such as by gang membership)
Each and every single of the above items must be true of an applicant.
Immigrants who qualify for this protection are often called "DREAMers",
as this policy was first a stopgap measure to the DREAM Act. DACA only
provides temporary protection, which can be renewed every two years, but
immigration law can be subject to sudden changes.
Obama's Executive Action: Deferred Action for Parental Accountability (DAPA)
In 2014, President Obama took courageous and important steps toward reforming
our broken immigration system. In an effort to keep children unified with
their parents—without deporting innocent children—deferred
action for parental accountability (DAPA) of U.S. citizens allows the
parents of citizens and lawful permanent residents an opportunity to avoid
deportation for the sake of their children.
To be eligible for protection under DAPA, the applicant must:
- Not be a removal priority under the new policy;
- Have been in the U.S. for at least 5 years;
- Have children who, on the date of the executive announcement, are U.S.
citizens or lawful permanent residents; and
- Present no other factors that would make a grant of deferred action inappropriate
Have more questions about DACA? Speak with a Houston immigration lawyer today.
Before you apply for DACA, you should talk with an experienced Houston
immigration lawyer to learn if applying for DACA is the right action for
you. If your DACA application is denied, you could be running some serious
risks, including the risk of
deportation in the future. That being said, getting relief from DACA can open numerous
opportunities, including the opportunity to be safe from removal proceedings
while being able to work inside the U.S.
To learn more about what it takes to qualify for this protection, and to
find out what documents you need to prove that you qualify for this deferred
action, do not hesitate to schedule your
initial consultation with Hira Law PLLC. You can find the legal advice you deserve with our
Houston immigration attorney.
Call us today!