Multi-American

How immigrants are redefining 'American' in Southern California

Renewal process for deferred action begins

Advocacy group representatives and young immigrants line up in Phoenix, Arizona for guidance about the federal deferred action program in August 2012, when the program began. On Thursday, Homeland Security officials announced renewal rules for recipients; the temporary legal status obtained by the first recipients two years ago is set to expire in September.
Advocacy group representatives and young immigrants line up in Phoenix, Arizona for guidance about the federal deferred action program in August 2012, when the program began. On Thursday, Homeland Security officials announced renewal rules for recipients; the temporary legal status obtained by the first recipients two years ago is set to expire in September. Ross D. Franklin/AP

Homeland Security has announced renewal rules for Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals, the federal program that since 2012 has granted two years' worth of temporary legal status and work permits to to more than 560,000 young immigrants.

Renewal applications will be accepted effective immediately to U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services, the agency charged with processing them. The first DACA approvals from two years ago are set to expire in September, and these recipients must quickly file renewal if they want to avoid a lapse.

According to a USCIS announcement today, the agency "encourages requestors to submit their renewal request approximately 120 days (four months) before their current period of deferred action expires."

The guidelines for applicants are as before. From USCIS:

Did not depart the United States on or after Aug. 15, 2012, without advance parole;
Have continuously resided in the United States since they submitted their most recent DACA request that was approved; and
Have not been convicted of a felony, a significant misdemeanor or three or more misdemeanors, and do not otherwise pose a threat to national security or public safety.

As before, people who haven't lived in the U.S. continously since June 15, 2007 aren't eligible. First-time applicants must have arrived in the country before turning 16, and have been younger than 31 as of June 15, 2012.

The application fee also remains steep: $465 for filing and biometrics.

The first DACA approvals took place not long after the program kicked off in August 2012. At the time, immigration reform supporters seeking a broad legalization plan saw the program as a temporary solution, as lawmakers debated a bigger immigration overhaul

Today, given the lack of movement on immigration reform in Congress, many immigrant advocates have been pushing the Obama administration to pursue administrative action, including possibly expanding deferred action to a larger group of immigrants.

USCIS has additional information about applying for and renewing DACA status here.

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