“Deferred Action” for Undocumented Youth

President Barack Obama announced on June 15, 2012 that the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) will implement a program for granting “deferred action” to undocumented youth who meet certain eligibility requirements.

To be eligible, an Individual must have come to the U.S. under the age of 16; continuously resided in the U.S. for at least five years; currently enrolled in school, graduated from high school, has obtained a GED, or an honorably discharged veteran of the U.S. Military.; has no criminal record (i.e., 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 30.

Deferred Action requests will be decided on a case-by-case basis. Those granted deferred action will be eligible for permission to work in the United States.

CAUTION: Deferred Action is not a “new law”, it is not a path to lawful status (except in certain limited circumstances), it is not a path to a green card or to U.S. Citizenship. It is a temporary protection against deportation. Please be aware of those individuals who may target our undocumented youth by advertising that it is such.

YOU CANNOT ADMINISTRATIVELY APPLY FOR DEFERRED ACTION AT THIS TIME; DHS HAS NOT RELEASED THE APPLICATION PROCESS TO THE PUBLIC.

In the interim, for those who are eligible, you may begin to gather the requisite documents as provided below:
1. Birth certificate and/or passport, showing applicant’s age as of June 15, 2012;
2. Financial, medical, school, employment, and/or military records demonstrating that the applicant came to the U.S. before the age of 16 AND resided in the U.S. for at least five (5) years before June 15, 2012, AND the applicant was physically present in the U.S. as of June 15, 2012;
3. School records and other evidence of enrollment, or documentation as an honorable discharged veteran of the U.S. Military.

According to the latest reports, the government will inform the public how to apply by August 13, 2012.