ON September 5, 2017, President Trump, through the Department of Homeland Security (DHS), announced the rescission of the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program. As a backgrounder, on June 12, 2012, then President Obama, also through the DHS, issued a Memorandum Entitled “Exercising Prosecutorial Discretion with Respect to Individuals Who Came to the United States as Children”. The memorandum allowed certain individuals who came to the U.S. as children to request deferred action for a period of two years, subject to renewal. Under deferred action, removal action against an individual is deferred for a certain period of time. They were also granted work authorization for the same period.
Due to the DACA phase-out, a lot of people are concerned on how the phase-out could possibly affect them. In response to these concerns, below are some of the questions frequently raised and asked:
Q: I currently have DACA status. What happens to my current status?
A: Previously issued DACA and work authorizations (EADs) will remain valid until they expire. As stated above, DACA and work authorizations are provided on a two-year basis. However, no new initial DACA requests will be accepted after September 5, 2017.
Q: I filed an initial request for DACA and work authorization prior to September 5, 2017. The request is still pending. Will the USCIS still process and adjudicate it?
A: As long as it is properly filed, the USCIS will adjudicate all initial requests for DACA accepted as of September 5, 2017.
Q: What happens to the DACA renewal request and work authorization I filed prior to September 5, 2017?
A: Just like an initial request for DACA and work authorization as discussed above, a properly filed DACA renewal authorization accepted as of September 5, 2017 will be adjudicated by the USCIS on an individual basis.
Q: I am currently on DACA but it is set to expire in six months? Can I still file a DACA renewal request?
A: Yes. All individuals on DACA whose benefits will expire between Sept. 5, 2017 and March 5, 2018 can file a renewal request provided it is accepted by the USCIS as of Oct. 5, 2017.
If you are contemplating filing any immigration petition for that matter, it is advisable to seek the counsel of an immigration lawyer to guide you on the intricacies of filing for such a petition.
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Atty. Gwendolyn Malaya-Santos is a member of the State Bar of California and the Integrated Bar of the Philippines. To schedule for a free initial in-person consultation, please call Tel. Nos. (213) 284-5984 or (626) 329-8215. Atty. Santos’ office is located at 3450 Wilshire Blvd., Suite 1200, Los Angeles, CA 90010.
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Information contained in this article does not, nor is it intended to, constitutes legal advice for any specific situation and does not create a lawyer-client relationship. It likewise does not constitute a guarantee, warranty, or prediction regarding the outcome of your legal matter.
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