Deferred action… second round? renewals!

 

DEFERRED ACTION FOR CHILDHOOD ARRIVALS. SECOND ROUND? RENEWALS!

U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) has released a draft application form and instructions for renewing Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA).  On February 19, 2014, USCIS issued guidance for renewals that affects a very small number of DACA recipients.  The guidance pertains only to people who were granted DACA by U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) before August 15, 2012, while they were in detention or removal proceedings. They are the only people with DACA who can apply to renew it at the present time.

People who received DACA after August 15, 2012, cannot renew their DACA at the present time. But new guidance will be issued soon and we anticipate that will parallel the guidance issued last month.

Who may submit a DACA renewal request?

A person who was granted DACA and who continues to meet the guidelines for DACA may submit a DACA renewal request. The person must also meet the following requirements in order to qualify for DACA renewal:

• The person must not have departed the U.S. on or after August 15, 2012, without first having been granted advance parole.
• The person must have resided continuously in the U.S. from the time he or she submitted the initial request for DACA up until the present time.
• If the person qualified for DACA based on demonstrating that he or she was “in school” when he or she submitted the initial request, then the person must have satisfied the education guideline for the renewal request.

When should a person with DACA apply for renewal?

A person who has DACA may apply for DACA renewal beginning 120 days before the date his or her current DACA and employment authorization document (EAD) expire.

How does a person with DACA request renewal?

The initial request for DACA and the renewal request are made by filling out and submitting the same forms: Form I-821D, Form I-765 Application for Employment Authorization, and Form I-765WS Worksheet.

What are the fees associated with the DACA renewal application?

The renewal request costs the same as the initial request: $465. The cost includes a $380 application fee for the Form I-765 and an $85 fee for biometrics (fingerprints).

If a person initially received DACA based on being “currently in school” and is still in school, how does he or she state this in the renewal application?

The renewal must show evidence of current enrollment or acceptance from school.

If a person obtained DACA based on enrollment in an educational program designed to lead to placement in postsecondary education, job training, or employment, what does he or she need to show?

The renewal must show evidence of the enrollment.

If a person with DACA does not apply for renewal, what will happen?

People with DACA who don’t apply for and get DACA renewal will no longer be able to work legally in the U.S. after their EAD expires. After their DACA expires, they will be in the same position they were in before applying initially for DACA — facing potential deportation if they are picked up by immigration authorities. We suggest that people with DACA who do not want to apply for renewal consult with an attorney or an accredited representative from a nonprofit organization that specializes in immigration law to see if any other temporary or permanent ways of remaining legally in the U.S. are available to them.

If a person’s DACA renewal request is denied, what will happen? Will the person be placed in deportation proceedings?

USCIS says that if a person’s DACA renewal request is denied, generally USCIS will refer the applicant’s case to ICE (the immigration enforcement authorities) only if it involves a criminal offense, fraud, or a threat to national security or public safety.

You should remember that this article is not intended to provide you with legal advice; it is intended only to provide guidance about the immigration laws. Furthermore, the article is not intended to explain or identify all potential issues that may arise in connection with a DACA application.

If you have any questions or concerns about any legal issue, you can call me at (315) 422-5673, send me a fax at (315) 466-5673, or e-mail me at joseperez@joseperezyourlawyer.com. The Law Office of Jose Perez is located at 120 East Washington Street, Suite 925, Syracuse, New York13202. Please look for my next article in the April edition.

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