UNDERSTANDING DACA

As of this posting, DACA has been revoked by President Donald Trump, effective March 5, 2018, but the possibility of new federal legislation that would continue the program in some form is under discussion. We will post updates in our news section as they develop. Individuals who have DACA that expires on or before March 5, have only until October 5, 2017 to file to renew their status.

The program began on June 15, 2012, when President Obama announced that certain undocumented immigrants who had been brought to the United States as children would now be protected from deportation. This group, often referred to as Dreamers would also be granted employment authorization and would be eligible to apply for advance parole to leave and return legally to the United States. This was an important benefit because it allowed DACA recipients to re-enter the US legally and thus be eligible to adjust status in the US if the recipient became an Immediate Relative (through marriage to US citizen, for example).

To be eligible for DACA you were required to show (1) you were born after June 15, 1981 (2) entered the US before the age of 16 (3) were living In the US on June 5, 2007 and (4) graduated from high school had received a GED or were currently enrolled in high and (5) were not convicted of a felony, significant misdemeanor, or three of more other misdemeanors or pose a threat to national security or public policy.

Unfortunately, the Obama administration decided at the outset that a drinking and driving conviction posed a serious threat to public policy and has denied Dreamers convicted of such offenses.

It is also important to remember that DACA, unlike Temporary Protected Status (TPS) does not confer legal status and does not allow the recipient to obtain permanent residency in the US in the absence of a legal entry and Immediate relative status.