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Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA)

On June 15, 2012, Secretary of Homeland Security Janet Napolitano announced

That certain young people who were brought to the United States as young children, do not present a risk to national security or public safety, and meet certain other criteria will be considered for relief from removal from the U.S. or from being put into removal proceedings. Those who qualify will be eligible to receive deferred action for a period of two years, subject to renewal, and will be eligible to apply for work authorization.

Applicants must meet the following criteria:

  1. Was under the age of 31 on June 15, 2012;
  2. Came to the United States under the age of sixteen;
  3. Has continuously resided in the U.S. since June 15, 2012, up to the present time;
  4. Was present in the U.S. on June 15, 2012, and at the time of making his or her request for deferred action;
  5. Is currently in school, has graduated or obtained a certificate of completion from high school, has obtained a general education development certificate, or is an honorably discharged veteran of the Coast Guard or Armed Forces of the U.S.; and
  6. Has not been convicted of a felony, significant misdemeanor, three or more other misdemeanors, and does not otherwise pose a threat to national security or public safety

If there are particular issues in your case such as a criminal record, or a brief departure from the U.S., you should probably consult with an attorney to determine whether you qualify for benefits under the DACA program.  I would be happy to discuss the particulars of your case with you.