On June 15, 2012, President Obama and Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano announced a new immigration enforcement process known as DACA (Deferred Adjudication for Childhood Arrivals). With DACA, young adults and children who came to this country now have the opportunity to qualify and earn a “deferral of action” on their immigration cases.
Those young immigrants who qualify for DACA will be given the ability to live, work, and stay in the U.S. for two years, following approval from the United States Citizens and Immigration Services (USCIS).
Young immigrants who meet the basic requirements of DACA will receive work permits and will be recognized by the U.S. as documented immigrants.
If you are a young person who meets the criteria below or if you have questions about your eligibility, please contact Austin Immigration Attorney Mario Flores to discuss how this legislation and immigration process affects you.
Basic Requirements for Deferred Adjudication for Childhood Arrivals
- You were under the age of 31 as of June 15, 2012.
- You came to the United States before reaching your 16th birthday.
- You have continuously resided in the United States since June 15, 2007, up to the present time.
- You were physically present in the United States on June 15, 2012, and at the time of making your request for consideration of deferred action with USCIS.
- You entered without inspection before June 15, 2012, or your lawful immigration status expired as of June 15, 2012.
- You are currently in school, have graduated or obtained a certificate of completion from high school, have obtained a general education development (GED) certificate, or are an honorably discharged veteran of the Coast Guard or Armed Forces of the United States.
- You have not been convicted of a felony, significant misdemeanor, three or more other misdemeanors, and do not otherwise pose a threat to national security or public safety.
Deferred Action (DACA) does not automatically grant a young immigrant U.S. Citizenship or work authorization (green card). The DACA status is a temporary protected status. This means that approval grants the applicant two years of temporary protection.
At the end of that time, a new application must be submitted or another type of application must be submitted to maintain temporary protection from removal proceedings. However, a young immigrant may choose to combine the DACA application with an application for work authorization.
There are many factors that affect your eligibility for this program. Attorney Flores will discuss your specific qualifications and work with you to find the best path to citizenship or protected immigration status.
Contact the Law Office of Mario Flores, PLLC, for additional information about your legal options. We can also provide legal assistance with immigration, estate planning and family law matters.