Deferred Action For Childhood Arrivals (DACA)
It goes by different names: DACA, Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals or the Obama law. Sometimes it is called, incorrectly, the DREAM Act. DACA is not the comprehensive immigration reform that the DREAM Act would have been. But it is a step in the right direction. If you are an undocumented foreign national and you came to the U.S. before your 16th birthday, DACA can protect you from removal.
There are eight requirements to DACA:
- You must be under the age of 31 as of June 15, 2012.
- You must have arrived in the U.S. before you turned 16.
- You must have lived here continuously since June 15, 2007.
- You must have been in the U.S. on June 15, 2012.
- You either entered illegally before June 15, 2012, or your lawful immigration status expired by that date.
- You must be in school, have graduated or been granted a certificate of completion from high school, a general education development (GED) certificate, or honorable discharge papers from the armed services.
- You must not have been convicted of any felony or serious misdemeanors.
- You must not pose a threat in any way to national security or public safety.
DACA is great news for young people who meet these requirements and for their families. DACA allows people to take a step toward legal residence. It allows you to obtain a work permit and even a driver’s license and Social Security number.
The DACA program is currently on hold pending the outcome of litigation in federal court. However, it is still possible to renew DACA applications. To learn how we can help you, call us at 972-445-7577 for a free phone consultation.
DACA Lawyer For Young Immigrants In Dallas And North Texas
DACA is not the reform we have been waiting for. It does not lead directly to citizenship. It is not even a law, just an executive order issued by the Obama administration. And it poses some dangers. People have applied for deferred action and then been deported because of a criminal conviction in their past.
But DACA offers young people a way to adjust their status based on hard work in school or in the service, which is surely a good thing.