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Posted by Robin on May 7, 2015

Information about the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals Program

The Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals Program, also called DACA for short, allows certain undocumented immigrants who arrived in the United States as children the right to study and find employment for two years without threat of deportation or any other legal action with regards to their immigration status. It was first instituted by President Obama in the year 2012 through a memorandum that was subsequently updated in 2014. Through DACA, young immigrants in specific circumstances can receive some much needed reprieve from the fear of deportation. While it does not provide legal immigration status for the applicant, it can provide a huge relief for those still waiting for legitimate citizenship.

According to the website of The Law Office of William Jang, PLLC, DACA applicants must meet a number of requirements in order to qualify for the program’s benefits. The most important factor is the applicant’s age. He or she must be under the age of 31 as of June 15, 2012, the date that President Obama signed the original memorandum for the program. The applicant must also have been continuously residing in the U.S. since 2007 and first arrived in the country before his or her 16th birthday. Another important consideration is that the applicant should be presently enrolled in school, have graduated from high school, or have earned a general education development (GED) certificate. Applicants who are honorably discharged veterans of the Coast Guard or the Armed Forces of the United States are also eligible for the DACA program. It’s also crucial that the applicant has never been convicted of any criminal offense.

There are a few other specific requirements involved in the process. Interested applicants may look at the website of the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services for additional information. It’s also important to note that applicants are expected to provide several documents in order to prove that they meet DACA qualifications. As the application could entail a lengthy and complicated process, those that have access to effective legal counsel should consider consulting with an immigration attorney first.

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