Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals Program (DACA) is a federal policy created in 2012 that allows certain individuals who entered the United States illegally as children (Dreamers) to now live and work legally in the United States and avoid deportation.
In a previous article (Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals Program “DACA”), we discussed the eligibility requirements for initial and renewal DACA requests, in addition to the benefits and protections associated with DACA status. We also discussed the current state of DACA. We advised that on July 16, 2021, a Texas district court judge held that the DACA policy is illegal, but the ruling is on appeal.
I Am Eligible for DACA – Can I Apply for My Initial/First-Time DACA Request after July 16, 2021?
USCIS is continuing to accept initial DACA requests. If you file an initial DACA request with USCIS after July 16, 2021, you will receive a receipt notice, and USCIS will process your payment. However, USCIS will not process or make a decision on your request while the court order remains in effect.
Should I apply for my initial DACA Request Now or wait for a change in the law?
The Texas court order is on appeal, so if it is reversed, USCIS will be able to process initial DACA requests. By filing your initial DACA request now, you will be reserving your place in line if the law should change. The only risk you take is losing your USCIS filing fees should the Texas ruling be upheld.
If the benefits and protections associated with DACA outweigh the risk of losing your filing fees, you should file your initial DACA request now. Otherwise, you should wait for the outcome of the appeal before you file.
If you are interested in applying for DACA, or have additional questions, contact the immigration attorneys at the Law Offices of Azita M. Mojarad, P.C.