Last summer President Obama announced a program designed to provide certain undocumented immigrants, in South Florida and beyond, with a two year reprieve from deportation. To qualify for the program, referred to as Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals, an individual must meet several requirements. It has been a year since the first applications were received by the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services. In this post we will take a look at where the program stands based on information recently released by the Brookings Institute.
If an applicant meets the program’s requirements, that individual will receive a two year reprieve from deportation. In addition, he or she will also be granted work authorization. The program’s requirements include being brought to the United States before turning 16, as well as being younger than 31 on June 15, 2012. In addition, applicants must have been in the U.S. continuously since that date and not have a criminal record. Other requirements include attending high school or graduating or receiving a GED. Individuals may meet this requirement by having served in the U.S. military as well.
Since applications for the program began to be accepted, they have been continuous. As of the end of June this year, approximately 557,400 individuals submitted an application. Close to three quarters of those who sought to be a part of the program were accepted. One percent of those who applied were not accepted. The remaining applications were in the process of being reviewed. Florida is one of the top five states from which the applications are being received.
While the requirements state that an applicant must have entered the U.S. before his or her sixteenth birthday, the study reflects that overall, individuals were much younger than that when they came to the county. Close to a third of them were under the age of six. In addition, many had been in the country continuously for well over the five year requirement.
There are many things that need to be provided as a part of an application for the deferred action program. Accordingly, those interested in applying may find it helpful to work with a lawyer who handles immigration matters.
Source: The Huffington Post, “A Look At Deferred Action Applicants One Year Later,” Griselda Nevarez, Aug. 16, 2013