In June of 2012, the Obama administration announced that it would accept requests for Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA), an initiative designed to temporarily suspend the deportation of young people residing unlawfully in the US who were brought to the US as children, meet certain education requirements and generally match the criteria established under legislative proposals like the DREAM Act. Ms. Cardenas and her team of assistants are experienced in these applications and have overcome proof issues by their creative out of the box brainstorming. Often times, applicants do not believe that they qualify for DACA, when they do, and often time, fear of coming out of the shadows may deter someone who is qualified from applying.
We understand your fears and we will help you through this process
Eligibility: An individual who meets all of the following criteria may apply for deferred action:
- Was under the age of 31 as of June 15, 2012 (calculate your age as of that date, not the age you are when you wish to apply)*;
- Came to the US before reaching his/her 16th birthday;
- Has continuously resided in the US since June 15, 2007*, up to the present time;
- Was physically present in the US on June 15, 2012, and at the time of application to USCIS;
- Entered without inspection before June 15, 2012, or lawful immigration status expired as of June 15, 2012;
- Is currently in school, has graduated or obtained a certificate of completion from high school, has obtained a GED, or is an honorably discharged veteran of the US Coast Guard or the US Armed Forces; and
- Has not been convicted of a felony, a “significant misdemeanor,” three or more other misdemeanors (not traffic related), or does not otherwise pose a threat to national security or public safety.
*(If the Supreme Court upholds President Obama’s executive order issued in November 2014, applicants need only show they have resided in the US since January 1, 2014 to the present, and there is no age cut off. Any person over 15 years old may apply assuming he/she meets all of the requirements).
DHS considers many misdemeanor convictions to be “significant misdemeanors,” including driving under the influence (DUI), regardless of any sentence imposed. If you have ever been arrested by the police, Ms. Cardenas will be able to review your criminal history and determine whether or not you qualify for DACA.
Deferred Action may be renewed as early as 150 days prior to the expiration of the deferred action period. The USCIS recommends that an applicant file to renew DACA no later than 120 days prior to the expiration to prevent a potential lapse in work authorization. The “renewal” is essentially a reapplication of DACA with proof of residency since the time an individual was initially granted DACA, or after the latest renewal. Applicants must meet all of the requirements of the initial DACA, and prove residency in the US since the last DACA approval.