USCIS Conference Call on Protection for DREAM Act Immigrants

On June 18, 2012, the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Service, in conjunction with the U.S. Customs and Border Protection, and the U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement,  held a Public Engagement session in which it addressed some questions concerning Obama’s deferred action plan for DREAM Act eligible immigrants.  It was announced on June 15, that effective immediately, certain young people who were brought to the United States as young children and meet several key criteria will be considered for relief from removal from the country or from entering into removal proceedings. Those who demonstrate that they meet the criteria 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.

Featured speakers included:

·         David Aguilar, Acting Commissioner, CBP

·         Alejandro Mayorkas, Director, USCIS

·         John Morton, Director, ICE

Key points discussed included:

  1. Deferred Action procedures are currently being developed and will be implemented within 60 days;
  2. Deferred Action does not grant legal status – it is a determination under the grant of prosecutorial discretion to defer removal from the United States;
  3. Immigrants will not accrue unlawful presence time while having Deferred Action status, however it does not absolve previous time;
  4. USCIS anticipates that the following documentation will be needed to prove eligibility for Deferred Action – financial records, medical records, employment records or tax returns, and school records;
  5. Dependent family members are not eligible for Deferred Action – they will need to qualify on their own;
  6. Customs and Border Protection will continue to detain and interview all immigrants – if it is determined that they meet the criteria for  Deferred Action, they will be referred to USCIS.

The Law Offices of Dayna Kelly will continue to update its readers concerning this ever changing topic.

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