If your DACA expires soon or if it has already been expired, go ahead and apply for a renewal; at the very least, that will put you in the queue to apply for permanent residence should the law be extended for people who were DACA recipients as of a certain date. Being in the queue also means that if you get denied illegally, you can actually sue the federal government to get DACA, which is how many of those lawsuits began.
On a Facebook group for federal litigation, the advice that all immigration attorneys are giving is to go ahead and apply, and if you get denied, we’ll go through federal court if we need to. With thousands of people following that advice, a lawsuit could become a class action, which would be major litigation against the government.
What If I Never Had DACA? Can I Apply Now?
If you never had DACA, I recommend you apply anyways. The program is probably going to be extended soon, leading to an influx of applicants, and when that happens, you’ll have priority if you applied before the 21st of January. Even though USCIS is currently rejecting first-time applicants (in spite of the Supreme Court ruling), New York litigation has ordered them to begin accepting them. Impending changes could pave the way for new applicants.
I Trusted the Government With My Data When I Applied for DACA. Can They Use That Information to Deport Me?
Under the actual DACA program, there is a promise that the government will not use information you’ve provided in any way to get you deported. Over the last four years, however, there was still fear that the administration might use information to deport immigrants anyways. If that were to happen, you should hire a good immigration attorney to defend you, and you could actually sue under the Federal Administrative Procedures Act. Federal law should protect you, since DACA was an executive order.
What Is the Deferred Action for Parents of Americans and Lawful Permanent Residents Program?
DAPA is the same as DACA but for people who are parents of United States Citizens and permanent residents. It’s estimated that there are about 13 million documented immigrants who have children or a spouse who are United States citizens. DAPA is intended to stop people with immediate relatives who are citizens or permanent residents from being deported if they themselves don’t qualify under DACA.
What Were the Proposed DAPA Eligibility Requirements?
The DAPA requirements are very close to those of the DACA program. You have to be the parent of a United States citizen or permanent resident. You must have lived in the United States since January 1st, 2010, the date of the DAPA order (which is different from the DACA date, as DAPA was an extension of the second DACA order), and you must have been present in the US on January 1st, 2010. You should not have had legal status at the time that the order was actually executed.
Additionally, you cannot have been convicted of a criminal offense, including both felonies and grave misdemeanors. Because the Immigration and Nationality Act (INA) doesn’t specify what should be considered a serious misdemeanor, it’s up to USCIS to determine, and there has been a lot of debate over what should and should not be considered. The current definition from USCIS is either a crime involving moral turpitude (CIMT) or an aggravated felony resulting in more than one year in jail. In 2010, possession was causing many applications to be rejected, so this definition attempts to address offenses for weed or similar (which can be waived with a waiver).
For more information on Expiry and Renewal of DACA in 2020-2021, an initial consultation is your next best step. Get the information and legal answers you are seeking by calling (888) 963-7326 today.