What is DACA?
DACA stands for Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals and was an executive order passed in June 15, 2012 by the Obama administration. DACA shields immigrants brought to the United States as children (and without documents) from getting deported and provides them with work permits.
These recipients are also known as DREAMers, referring to the DREAM (Development, Relief, and Education for Alien Minors) Act. The DREAM Act was first introduced to Congress in 2001 to provide a pathway to citizenship for immigrant youth. Unfortunately, Congress didn’t pass it, leading to the creation of DACA.
Since DACA was created through an executive order, presidents after Obama had the authority to repeal it at any time. This is exactly what happened on October 5, 2017; DACA was repealed by the Trump administration. Because of this action, multiple lawsuits followed and even reached the Supreme Court, who on June 2020, ruled that the Trump administration had illegally terminated DACA. However, the lawsuits continued because first-time applicants were still being denied the opportunity to apply.
Surprisingly, on Friday December 4, 2020, a Federal Judge in the District Court for the Eastern District of New York ruled that USCIS must accept new applications. These applications will be decided based on the terms of the DACA policy in effect prior to its attempted termination on September 5, 2017.
SO… SPREAD THE WORD: DACA IS BACK!
Who Qualifies for DACA?
- Were you under the age of 31 as of June 15, 2012?
- Did you come to the United States before reaching your 16th birthday?
- Have you continuously resided in the United States since June 15, 2007, up to the present time?
- Were you physically present in the United States on June 15, 2012, and at the time of applying with USCIS?
- Did you have no lawful status on June 15, 2012?
- Are you currently in school, have graduated, or obtained a general education development (GED) certificate, or are an honorably discharged veteran of the Coast Guard or Armed Forces of the United States?
- Have you not been convicted of a felony, significant misdemeanor, or three or more other misdemeanors, and do not otherwise pose a threat to national security or public safety?