Deferred Action for Parents of Americans and Lawful Permanent Residents (DAPA)

By CAROLINA VALDIVIA

Screen Shot 2015-10-30 at 7.17.10 PMOn November 20, 2014, President Barack Obama announced the Deferred Action for Parents of Americans and Lawful Permanent Residents (DAPA) program. Under DAPA, eligible undocumented parents of U.S. citizens and parents of lawful permanent residents (LPRs) would have temporary relief from deportation and work authorization. On this date, President Obama also announced expanded DACA, which would have made DACA available to eligible undocumented young adults who entered the U.S. before the age of 16 and lived in the U.S. continuously since January 1, 2010. Expanded DACA would have also made the temporary relief and work authorization for three years, instead of two.

To be eligible for DAPA, you must:

  • Be the parent of a U.S. citizen or lawful permanent resident.
  • Have continuously lived in the U.S. since January 1, 2010.
  • Have been present in the U.S. on November 20, 2014. It’s also likely that you will need to be present in the U.S. every day from Nov. 20, 2014, until you apply for DAPA.
  • Not have a lawful immigration status on November 20, 2014. To meet this requirement, (1) you must have entered the U.S. without papers, or, if you entered lawfully, your lawful immigration status must have expired before November 20, 2014; and (2) you must not have a lawful immigration status at the time you apply for DAPA.
  • Have not been convicted of certain criminal offenses, including any felonies and some misdemeanors.

To be eligible for expanded DACA, you must:

  • Have come to the United States before your sixteenth birthday.
  • Have continuously lived in the U.S. since January 1, 2010.
  • Have been present in the U.S. on June 15, 2012, and on every day since August 15, 2012.
  • Have graduated or obtained a certificate of completion from high school, have obtained a general education development (GED) certificate, or “be in school” on the date that you submit your deferred action application. See our DACA FAQ for more information about meeting the “be in school” requirement.
  • Have not been convicted of certain criminal offenses. See our DACA FAQ for more information.

NOTE: USCIS is currently not accepting applications for DAPA or expanded DACA because a federal district court in Texas has issued an order that temporarily blocks these programs from being implemented.

Also important to know, the temporary block on DAPA and expanded DACA, do not interfere with the current DACA program. To find out if you qualify for DACA, as well as learn more about the program and application process, please visit U.S. Immigration and Citizenship Services’ (USCIS) official website: “Consideration of Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals

To learn more about DAPA and expanded DACA, I highly recommend the following sites: USCISCARECEN  and the National Immigration Law Center

If you have a question about DACA or DAPA, check out this resource where you can ask questions to leading immigration advocates and lawyers (it’s free): “DAPA questions

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