Tuesday, November 5, 2013

Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) Basics

Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA)
On June 15, 2012 President Obama announced Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals, otherwise known The Dream Act.  This allowed children whose parents brought them to the United States prior to them reaching age 16 to be entitled to certain immigration benefits.  This administration has been using “prosecutorial discretion” to not initiate or even terminate removal proceedings against certain foreign nationals who qualify.  In addition, these applicants are entitled to an Employment Authorization Document (EAD) which will allow them to work in the United States for a period of two years.  Generally, this document can be renewed.  

Applicants for DACA should:  
  1. Have entered the U.S. prior to age 16; 
  2. been younger than 31 on June 15, 2012;
  3. have been continuously present in the United States for at least 5 years; 
  4. must have either served in the military or be enrolled in school, or have graduated from high school, or received a GED.  

Applicants cannot have been convicted of a felony, three misdemeanors, or a significant misdemeanor.  

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