DACA Lawyers Serving Clients Throughout California
In the summer of 2012, the Department of Homeland Security under the Obama administration announced and then enacted the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals policy. This new immigration policy made it possible for certain young adults who “unlawfully” came to America in their youth to seek two years of renewable deferred deportation from the country they consider home.
Provided the young adults and children meet certain requirements, DACA allowed for them to request deferred action, allowing them to remain in America. These “DREAMers” would then be eligible to go to work, learn in school, get a driver’s license, and a Social Security number. If you think this policy might apply in your situation, call Landerholm Immigration to talk to one of our experienced immigration attorneys. 510-488-1020.
How Does One Renew Their Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals Status?
If you were previously approved for DACA, then you may be able to renew this status. DACA requires renewal every two years. You may start the renewal process 180 days before the expiration date of your current status and it is recommended that you apply to renew no later than 120 days before your status expires.
Not everyone who qualified before will qualify for renewal. If certain legal aspects relating to your time in the USA have changed, such as you have been charged with a crime sometime in the last two years, then these factors will need to be considered.
Consult with an experienced DACA lawyer to learn more about renewal and if renewing is the right path for you.
Is the US Government Accepting New DACA Applicants?
The Trump administration repeatedly attempted to undo everything good about the DACA program. And while they were prevented from ending it entirely, some efforts to undo DACA have been more successful than others.
In July 2021, a Texas federal judge ruled that DACA was unlawful. While the judge in question found DACA to be illegal in its entirety, those who had previously been approved under the program were allowed to continue renewing their deferred deportations, for now. Until a higher court overturns this judge’s decision, the policy remains in danger and altered from its original intent.
Though there are attempts to strengthen the policy and individuals may continue to apply, currently Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals can no longer process new applications. For the time being, the policy mostly helps only those who were previously approved before the July 2021 ruling as they may continue to renew their DACA status.
What Are the Requirements for DACA?
At this time in 2022, the Texas ruling makes it so that no new applicants can be processed. However, it may still be worth filing an application anyway, so that the application is in the system and pending. Should Congress or the Executive Branch remedy the matter and provide a legal pathway for new applicants, having some of the paperwork done already can save a lot of time and stress.
The current requirements for DACA include:
- To be considered, one must be under the age of 31 as of June 15, 2012.
- The applicant had no lawful status on June 15, 2012.
- One must have come to the United States before reaching their 16th birthday.
- One must have continuously lived in the United States since June 15, 2007.
- Applicants must either currently be enrolled in school or have graduated from high school or obtained a GED. Alternatively, honorable discharge veterans from the US military and Coast Guard may also apply.
- One must not have been convicted of a felony, any significant misdemeanor, or three or more other lesser misdemeanors, or be suspected of terrorism, or otherwise pose a threat to national security or public safety or a danger to others.
- And one must be at least 15 years old (unless you are in removal proceedings).
There are other requirements to consider and not everyone is eligible. Our DACA attorneys will be able to tell you more.
Contact an Oakland DACA Lawyer
There are approximately 200,000 DREAMers in California and closer to a million in the entirety of the United States. These individuals may not have previously lived in America in a strictly “lawful” sense, but they personally committed no legal wrongdoing of their own accord. Those who meet the eligibility requirements should be allowed to live and prosper along with their friends and family in America. The DACA program is currently the best option for many such young people.
At the Landerholm law firm, our attorneys can help you with all matters related to DACA, including applying and renewing. Call our Oakland office for a free evaluation. 510-488-1020.