Advisory regarding DACA by the Northwest Immigrant Rights Project

By CAROLINA VALDIVIA

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The Northwest Immigrant Rights Project is committed to defending and advancing the rights of immigrants through direct legal services, systemic advocacy, and community education. They have put together an advisory regarding DACA. In it, they address concerns around applying for DACA, renewing, and traveling abroad with advance parole. Please note that this is an advisory by the Northwest Immigrant Rights Project, at My (Un)Documented Life blog, we will continue to bring you more information and resources as the news surrounding the election results and immigration policies continue to unfold. Make sure to subscribe (it’s free) to receive daily updates.

Here is the advisory:

“We have been receiving a number of questions from community members following the election of Donald Trump as President about the future of the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program. As background, DACA is a program established by President Obama in June 2012 that grants a form of temporary protection from deportation known as “deferred action” to undocumented immigrants who came to the U.S. before the age of 16, have resided in the U.S. since June 2007 and meet other requirements. During the campaign, Donald Trump indicated that he would end the DACA program if he was elected, but he did not specify what this meant.

– If I have never applied for DACA but I think I qualify, what should I do?

If you have never applied to the DACA program and you are not currently in removal (deportation) proceedings, our recommendation is that you do NOT try to file an initial application at this time.

– I am in removal (deportation) proceedings, what should I do?

If you are represented by an attorney, you can contact him/her. If you are not, you should consult with an attorney as soon as possible. If you cannot afford an attorney, you can contact NWIRP’s offices at the numbers listed below.

– I do not have DACA but I already submitted an application, which is pending, what should I do?
If you already submitted an initial application for DACA and you were assisted by an attorney or accredited representative who told you that you were eligible, our recommendation is that you continue with that application. It is possible that such an application may be approved before the end of the Obama administration. If you did not get assistance from an attorney or accredited representative, we would recommend that you consult with one to figure out what you should do.

– I am a current DACA recipient but my work permit is expiring soon, what should I do?

If you already have been approved for DACA and you have not had issues that might disqualify you from DACA, our recommendation at this time is that you continue to seek renewal of your DACA status if your permit expires before April 10, 2017. Issues that might disqualify you from DACA status include any arrests, charges or convictions or travel outside the United States without prior approval (advanced parole) since your last application. Please understand that although we recommend pursuing renewal, it is possible that your work permit may not get approved and you may end up losing the application fee. Also, this recommendation might change depending on what announcements are made so please stay informed of further developments.

– I am a current DACA recipient and was planning to travel under advanced parole, what should I do?

Because of the uncertainty surrounding the future of DACA, our general recommendation is that DACA recipients not travel outside of the U.S. at this time, even if they have been approved for advanced parole. However, we appreciate that there may be emergency circumstances and the government is still accepting requests for advanced parole from DACA recipients as of the date of this advisory.”

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Categories: Applying for DACA, Renewing

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4 replies

  1. What about permanent residents who wish to apply for citizenship? What advice do you have with regards to starting their citizenship application now? Do they run more risk later vs now?

    • Good question. I haven’t seen any advisories yet on this in specific, but I did see this advice from Congressman Joaquin Castro: “All legal residents eligible to apply for citizenship should do so before January 20, 2017, or risk changes that make you ineligible.” He also added that, “As a policy matter, based on Trump’s statements on limiting # of legal immigrants, changes are quite possible (i.e. Risk)”

  2. What if your DACA expires after April 10,2017? Should one still apply for renewal?

    • Hi Lourdes, check out this second post on the advice from two national immigration law centers with more info: https://mydocumentedlife.org/2016/11/10/advice-regarding-daca-whats-next-from-two-national-immigration-law-centers/

      Their thoughts are that, “It is unknown whether the next Administration will terminate existing DACA grants or instead not allow DACA recipients to renew. Those who have already received DACA are known by the government. Therefore, renewing DACA does not carry a new risk. In fact, renewing DACA may mean a DACA recipient can have a work permit until it expires one to two years into the next Administration. One risk, however, is again that the renewal might not be adjudicated before Trump becomes President, and the effort and money to renew will be for nothing. People who file to renew soon may be successful, as DACA renewals are currently being processed in 8 weeks with USCIS’ upgraded system.”

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