Law Firm Blog

Tuesday, July 10, 2012

Deferred Action is Here!!

The President and the Secretary of the U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS) have announced a policy for DHS to grant "deferred action" and work authorization to certain students and young adults who otherwise might be removable ("deportable") from the United States. Deferred action in general is a DHS decision not to pursue enforcement against a person for a specific period of time and allows recipients to apply for an Employment Authorization Document (commonly known as "work authorization"). This is a real, but limited, step that has engendered national discussion about the proposed Development Relief and Education for Alien Minors Act (the "DREAM Act"), which at its core provides a form of relief to certain students and young adults who are out of status through no fault of their own and a pathway to citizenship. Although the Deferred Action Program mirrors the DREAM Act, it does not provide a pathway to lawful permanent resident status or citizenship; rather it prevents qualifying applicants from being deported and enables them to apply for work authorization.

Eligibility for Deferred Action Program

As of June 15, 2012, qualifying applicants must meet all of the following criteria: 

  1. Have come to the U.S. under the age of 16;
  2. Have continuously resided in the U.S for at least 5 years prior to June 15, 2012;
  3. Have been physically present on June 15, 2012;
  4. Currently be in school, have graduated from high school, have obtained a general education development certificate, or are honorably discharged veterans of the Coast Guard or Armed Forces of the United States;
  5. Have not been convicted of a felony offense, a significant misdemeanor offense, multiple misdemeanor offenses, or otherwise pose a threat to national security or public safety;
  6. Not be above the age of 30; and
  7. Be age 15 or older to request deferred action affirmatively from U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) (as opposed to those facing removal by Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) or Customs and Border Protection (CBP), who can apply even if under age 15).

Evidence to Establish Eligibility

The process for applying affirmatively under the Deferred Action Program will be implemented by August 15, 2012. However, eligible applicants should begin assembling the following:

  1. At least 6 passport style photos;
  2. Travel records;
  3. Financial records;
  4. Medical records;
  5. School records, such as transcripts and diplomas;
  6. Employment records;
  7. Birth certificates (with translation) or Passport.

The Chandak Law Firm, PLLC assists clients in Raleigh, North Carolina and throughout Wake County, North Carolina.

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| Phone: 919-758-8870

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