Q. What is deferred action?
Deferred action directs immigration authorities to use their prosecutorial discretion to not pursue ("defer") removal action against an individual for a certain period of time.
Q. Does deferred action give people residency (green card) or citizenship?
No. Deferred action gives qualified individuals protection from removal for a period of time. It also gives them the option to apply for a work permit so that they may work legally during that time.
Q. How do I qualify for deferred action?
You must have come to the USA before reaching your 16th birthday; have resided continuously in the USA from January 1, 2010 to January 1 2015; had no lawful status on January 1, 2015; are currently in school or have graduated from high school or have obtained a general education development (GED) certificate, or been honorably discharged from the US military; have 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.
Q. What are the new changes to Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA)?
There are several new changes to DACA that expand this benefit to individuals who did not previously qualify:
1. New applicants and those renewing it will see their deferred action period and employment authorization period extended from two years to three years.
2. Deferred Action has been expanded to those who have lived continuously in the United States since January 1, 2010, rather than the prior requirement of June 15, 2007.
3. Deferred Action has been expanded to any one, regardless of current age, who meets all other DACA guidelines.
Q. What if I have a crime on my record?
It is very important to consult with an experienced immigration attorney on this issue before filing. If you were convicted of either a felony or a "significant misdemeanor," you are not eligible to file for DACA. If immigration authorities feel that your criminal history threatens public safety or national security, your case might be referred to ICE for removal action. Do not apply for DACA unless you are sure this will not happen to you.
Q. If my DACA application is denied, would I be put in removal proceedings?
Your DACA application is confidential, however, a denial may result in removal proceedings if you have had certain arrests and convictions. Consult with an experienced immigration attorney to analyze your case prior to submitting your application.
Q. When will these new changes take effect?
Unfortunately, implementation has been temporarily stalled. We will keep this site updated with the newest information regarding the application process and timeline.