Texas, along with nine other states, recently threatened to sue the federal government if the program known as Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) is not ended by September 5, 2017. DACA is not a legal status, but provides its recipients with temporary protection against deportation, permission to work, and in states like Virginia, a driver’s license and in-state tuition eligibility. Nearly 800,000 young people, brought to the U.S. as children, known also as the Dreamers, have benefited greatly from DACA.
While it is unclear what the Trump administration will do about the threat, USCIS is still currently accepting and processing DACA applications. Therefore, if you are a current DACA recipient and your DACA will expire within the next year, or if you are an initial DACA applicant, you should consult with an immigration attorney or BIA accredited representative immediately and carefully weigh the risks and benefits.
- Whether you are filing an initial application or seeking to renew, you are providing immigration authorities with your personal information, such as your current address. If DACA is rescinded, immigration authorities could use this information for enforcement purposes.
- If DACA is rescinded before your application is approved, you may lose your $495 filing fee.
- Even if the administration rescinds DACA, there is a chance that pending applications will still be processed.
- If processed and approved, DACA protection will extend to its recipients for two more years.
Lastly, if you have had any criminal or immigration issues (including an arrest or misdemeanor) DO NOT apply for DACA or seek to renew without first consulting with an attorney or BIA accredited representative.
This blog post provides information but should not be construed as legal advice. To obtain legal advice, contact an attorney.