We wanted to launch a blog to keep our followers engaged and updated on the latest information about immigration and upcoming changes. Our goal is to inform and inspire people to take advantage of any immigration relief available to them.
- DACA Updates
Deferred action, also called DACA by the Department of Homeland Security, continues to be a hot topic in the world of immigration. This program was created under President Obama to give a temporary lawful status to those who entered the United States as children and meet the other requirements.
During the Trump Administration, DACA was frequently under attack and the program as a whole experienced several setbacks. However, a just recently ordered that the program be fully restored, which has caused a few new developments relating to DACA. The most exciting development is that applicants who have been granted deferred action can now (again) apply to travel outside the United States. This request to travel is called a request for “advance parole”. There is a separate application for advance parole along with a separate filing fee. People who want to apply for advance parole must apply BEFORE they leave the United States. Also, USCIS has said that they will only approve parole in cases where there is need based on education, employment, or humanitarian reasons. It is not yet known how great the need to travel must be or exactly what sorts of reasons will qualify, but nonetheless, it is an exciting opportunity for those who have not been to their home country in several years.
USCIS has also clarified that, should an employee ask for an employment letter, even if that employee is not working with authorization, USCIS will not forward this information to ICE unless there is evidence of widespread abuse or egregious violations of criminal statute. This means that employers should feel free to write employment letters for their employees to assist their employees in proving physical presence. Even if the employee is working without valid work authorization, the employer will not be reported to ICE, barring major violations of this part of the law.
Finally, USCIS has provided additional guidance regarding those people who may have worked with an invented social security number. Anyone who has worked with an invented social security number should talk to a lawyer to see how the new guidance may affect their case.
As you may already know, deferred action, or DACA, is being offered to those who are between 15 and 30, who have lived in the United States since June 2007, who entered the US before turning 16, who are in school or have graduated or received a GED, and who have not been convicted of a felony, significant misdemeanors, or several misdemeanors.
Deferred action grants the requestor a work permit that allows that person to both work legally in the United States, apply for a social security number, and, here in Colorado, apply for a driver’s license or state ID. The work permit is valid for two years and can be renewed.
If you think that you might qualify for deferred action, you can go to the USCIS website, www.uscis.gov for more information, or contact an attorney familiar with immigration laws.