Update on Immigration Effects of Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals

On June 15, 2012, President Obama began implementing an immigration policy called Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals that would allow young immigrants without documents to apply for relief to avoid being deported. The government has been tracking the data since the implementation of this policy in mid-June and has just now been able to release the results of the policy so far. Nearly 180,000 applications have been submitted and more than 4,500 eligible youth have received deferred action.

The program has received much praise and positive feedback from the immigrants who were accepted and completed all the requirements. As of right now, 4,591 requests for relief have already been granted without a single reported denial. The policy is still relatively new and has only been up and running for about 4 months but has many immigrants hopeful. With promising results, more immigrants are applying for the program and hoping to be granted relief and given the opportunity to stay in the U.S. However, there are certain stipulations that must be met in order to qualify for relief.

The application process begins with the applicant meeting all of the qualifications including: being under the age of 31, coming to the U.S. before reaching their 16th birthday, and having no convictions on their record just to name a few. If the applicant is able to meet the qualifications, they send in the immigration forms along with a $465 application fee.  While the application process may seem easy enough, it does not come without risks.

Because deferred action is not federal law, depending on who is president, the program may be terminated at any time. Also while the USCIS has promised to keep the information sent to them private from ICE and CBP, this policy may also change at any time. This causes many people to fear that they will be deported if their application is ultimately denied. For many immigrants with young families, this is not a risk they are willing to take.

The best way to see if applying for deferred action is the right choice for your situation is to contact an experienced mmigration attorney. It is important to ensure that you have all of the correct information and assess the risks of applying before doing so. While the process has had positive results, it may cause more harm than good if a part of the application is not completed correctly. To minimize the risk of removal but take advantage of the positive aspects of the deferred action policy, please contact us at 314-961-8200.