Today U.S. Department of Homeland Security Secretary Napolitano announced two key dates for young DREAMers seeking protection under Deferred Action. Secretary Napolitano announced that on August 1st, more information would be released about deferred action and the application process. Secretary Napolitano also announced that the Department of Homeland Security would begin accepting application for deferred action on August 15th. This means, young immigrants may qualify for deferred action legal status for as early as August of this year.
To recap, on June 15, 2012 President Obama and Secretary Napolitano announced a new discretionary prosecutorial process for enforcing immigration law, known as deferred action. Those who apply and qualify for deferred action will be allowed two years legal status in the U.S. to work and live without fear of deportation.
To be eligible for the deferred action, the immigrant must show he or she:
- Came to the U.S. under the age of sixteen;
- Has continuously resided in the U.S. for at least five years preceding June 15, 2012 and is currently present in the U.S. on June 15, 2012;
- Is currently in school, has graduated from high school, has obtained a general education development certificate or honorably discharged veterans of the Coast Guard or Armed Forces of the United States;
- Has 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; and
- Is not above the age of thirty.
To read more about deferred action, please refer to our article on it here.