Guide For Current DREAMers on Deferred Action

Please Note: This guide does not substitute legal advice. Please seek a lawyer if you have further questions. 

VISIT THIS PAGE ON NEWEST RESOURCES FROM ORGANIZATIONS WHO ARE HELPING UNDOCUMENTED STUDENTS 

On June 15, 2012,  President Obama publicly introduced a change in immigration policy to suspend ALL deportation proceedings of undocumented youth who meet certain criteria.

Beware of notarios and unscrupulous lawyers. You do not have to pay them to fill out paperwork right now. Furthermore, many may tell you to submit an application now or even submit an application to adjust your status to legal permanent resident or US citizen. Do not do it.

When the time comes, you may acquire a lawyer. For right now, just wait patiently. 

Read the information below and do your homework before you do anything. if you have questions, please let us know at info@collierstoriesmatter.org

What is this policy change?

Deferred action, as it is called, will enable certain undocumented youth to apply for a temporary fix. It does not grant US citizenship or permanent residency, but rather a temporary status that can be renewed every 2 years.

What does it do?

Deferred Action is granted on a discretionary basis. This means that the choice is entirely based upon a USCIS’s own judgement.

If Deferred Action is granted, the individual will receive a work permit, which will enable him/her to obtain a driver’s license.

When does the process start? 

This process will be implemented within 60 days. Do NOT submit any paperwork to USCIS. This will start removal proceedings and could have you at risk of deportation unnecessarily. Just Make sure you are eligible for deferred action by the checklist below and that you have the necessary documents to prove it.

What do I do now? 

Beginning Monday, June 18th, individuals can call USCIS’ hotline at 1-800-375-5283 or ICE’s hotline at 1-888-351-4024 during business hours with questions or to request more information on the forthcoming process.

What are the requirements?

Pursuant to the Secretary’s June 15, 2012 memorandum, in order to be eligible for deferred action, individuals must:

1.) Have come to the United States under the age of sixteen;

2.) Have continuously resided in the United States for at least five years preceding the date of this memorandum and are present in the United States on the date of this memorandum;

3.) Currently be in school, have graduated from high school, have obtained a general education development certificate, or are honorably discharged veterans of the Coast Guard or Armed Forces of the United States;  

4.) Have not been convicted of a felony offense, a significant misdemeanor offense, multiple misdemeanor offenses, or otherwise pose a threat to national security or public safety; 

5.) Not be above the age of thirty.

Refer to the USCIS.gov entry for more, in depth frequently asked questions about the new policy. See below for additional documents and links.

HOWEVER, THIS IS NOT EQUIVALENT TO THE DREAM ACT. The DREAM Act is still a piece of legislation that must be passed in Congress in order to secure a pathway to legalization for thousands of DREAMers nationwide. We must not give up our fight and must keep pressuring the government to hear our voices. This must be a lesson to the movement to keep pushing on and never give up.

Documents Needed for Process

1. Proving you were in the country before age 16 

“In applying for a grant of deferred removal, an individual will have to provide certain documents to show that he or she came to the United States as a child, before turning 16 years old.  Such documents include financial records, medical records, school records, employment records, military records, and any other evidence that he or she arrived in the U.S. before turning 16.” (text from FAQs)

A notarized document will suffice as well. We will hopefully provide a sample statement to use.

Prove 5 consecutive years 

“In applying for a grant of deferred removal, an individual will have to provide documents to show that he or she was in the United States for the 5 years immediately before June 15, 2012.  Such documents include financial records, medical records, school records, employment records, military records, and any other relevant evidence.” (text from FAQs)

Proving that you were in the US on June 15, 2012 

“In applying for a grant of deferred removal, an individual will have to provide documents to show that he or she was physically present in the United States on June 15, 2012.  Such documents include financial records, medical records, school records, employment records, military records, and any other relevant evidence.” (text from FAQs)

Medical records  can include:

  • Having had a doctor’s visit on June 15th
  • Having received a physical on June 15th
Financial records can include:
  • Having had bank activity on June 15th (making a transaction, a purchase on that day) if you have a credit card/debit card
School Records can include:
  • If still in school, having your school transcript on June 15th
Employment Records can include:
  • having your pay stubs for June 15th

What is a “felony”? 

An individual who was convicted (not simply accused) of a felony is ineligible for a grant of deferred action.  A felony is a federal, state, or local criminal offense that is punishable by imprisonment for a term that is longer than one year.

What is a “significant misdemeanor”?

An individual who was convicted (not simply accused) of a significant misdemeanor is ineligible for a grant of deferred action.  A significant misdemeanor is a state, federal, or local crime that is punishable by no more than one year of imprisonment (or no imprisonment at all) which involves: violence, threats, or assault, including domestic violence; sexual abuse or exploitation; burglary, larceny, or fraud; driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs; obstruction of justice or bribery; unlawful flight form arrest, prosecution or scene of an accident; unlawful possession or use of a firearm; drug distribution or trafficking; or unlawful possession of drugs.

Will dependents and immediate family benefit from deferred action

Dependents (children) and other family members of a person who has been granted deferred action will not be given any derivative benefits.  The new deferred action process is available only to those who individually meet the requirements explained above.

Will denial of deferred action result in removal proceedings

If the USCIS denies the grant of deferred action, it may place the applicant in removal proceedings, particularly if that individual has a criminal conviction or if there is a finding of fraud in their request.

Will a person granted deferred action be able to travel abroad

This is a possibility, but as of June 15, 2012 the Department of Homeland Security has not decided this issue.

Additional Resources

Full Memo 

Press Release (6/15/12)

FAQs 

DHS Website

Fact Sheets

En español

In English 

Edited and posted by: Grey and Raul

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