Who can apply and when?
Published: February 7, 2018
U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Service (USCIS) announced on Saturday January
13, 2018 that Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) renewal applications are now being accepted in
response to the federal court order requiring them to do so. The
notice from USCIS reads:
Due to a federal court order, USCIS has resumed
accepting requests to renew a grant of deferred action under DACA. Until
further notice, and unless otherwise provided in this guidance, the DACA policy
will be operated on the terms in place before it was rescinded on September 5,
this means is that persons who were previously granted deferred action under
DACA may request renewal. They do so by
filing - Forms and Fees at: https://www.uscis.gov/i-821d
the announcement is not entirely clear on this, it appears that those who have
DACA now can file for a renewal if their application expires less than 150 days
from the time of the USCIS announcement. It’s not clear whether USCIS
will accept renewal applications from those whose DACA expires more than 150
days from then. See FAQs from the
National Immigrant Law Center.
who previously received DACA but their DACA expired after September 5, 2016 can
also file a DACA request as a renewal request. However, persons
whose DACA expired before September 5, 2016, cannot renew under this
No Right to Travel.
will not accept or approve requests for permission to travel outside the
country known as “advance parole”, which was previously available to DACA
recipients. No one with DACA should travel outside the U.S., unless
there’s a future change in the law.
No New Applications.
is not accepting requests from individuals who have never before been granted
deferred action under DACA. This bars from relief those who have turned
15 years old since September 5, 2017 and would have been eligible had the
original DACA Executive Order remained in place. It also bars those who never applied earlier
for other reasons.
Response to Judge’s
Trump Administration took this action because it was required by the Honorable William
Alsup, a federal judge in San Francisco. Judge Alsup’s order on January 9, 2018 ruled that Trump’s
decision to cancel DACA may have been improper and temporarily required the
Administration to continue to renew DACA for those who had that status. It is likely the Trump Administration will
appeal the order to the Ninth Circuit and, if necessary, to the U.S. Supreme
Court. One of those courts could rescind
Judge Alsup’s order and that would likely result in USCIS closing down DACA
completely again. Also, this order is
merely a preliminary injunction and so further proceedings in the District
Court may result in the order being lifted.
Who Should Apply?
whose DACA expires in the next five months would be wise to apply to renew
their status. Likewise, persons should apply who allowed their status to lapse
after September 5, 2016 and were barred from re-applying by the Trump
Administration’s cancellation of DACA.
passage of Congressional legislation such as the DREAM Act of 2017 would be far
preferable to the status quo as it would provide deportation relief to far more
people on a legislative basis and create a path to permanent residence. For a summary of that bill, go to: https://www.congress.gov/bill/115th-congress/senate-bill/1615.
WARNING: The foregoing is an article
discussing legal issues. It is not intended to be a substitute for legal
advice. We recommend that you get competent legal advice specific to your case.