Moving Forward Together

Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA)

IMPORTANT UPDATE – July 19, 2021

On July 16, 2021, a federal judge in Texas issued a harmful decision against DACA and a corresponding order directing the current fate of DACA.  The main issue in the case was whether DACA was lawfully created in 2012. It is the first time a court has reviewed and decided on that issue alone. The judge decided against DACA, deciding that DACA, as created in 2012, is unlawful. Below, we have provided our current assessment of what the decision means for:

  • Those who currently have DACA;
  • Those who need to renew their DACA;
  • Those who have previously had DACA, but it expired over a year ago and they are seeking to apply for DACA again;
  • Those who have already submitted their first-ever DACA application and the application is still pending;
  • Those who are seeking to apply for DACA for the first time but have not yet filed an application; and
  • Advance parole for those who currently have DACA.

Please do not fear, the Attorney General of the United States has made a promise to continue to find and advocate for permanent solutions to protect Dreamers and has indicated that removal enforcement (deportation) will not be implemented against Dreamers who otherwise are not a priority for removal (a priority for removal means a person who is deemed a threat against the U.S. community or has certain serious criminal history who does not have a defense to removal).   This means the current Executive Administration of the United States is in support of Dreamers, but it will be up to Congress to make a legislative permanent solution.

As well, this is our affirmation to you that we, Jewish Family Service of San Diego, stand with all Dreamers and their families, and all estimated 11 million undocumented immigrants who consider the United States to be their home.  We will continue to advocate for a permanent solution for Dreamers and their families and all undocumented immigrants.

Please check back frequently as more information regarding the decision and additional protection for Dreamers will be posted here.

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DACA Updates

FAQS on the texas daca decision and order

(1) What does the decision mean for those who currently have DACA, granted on or before July 16, 2021?

For anyone who currently has DACA, your status is not affected. For the duration of your DACA status (during the dates indicated on your valid work permit), you may continue to work lawfully provided you continue to meet the minimum requirements of DACA.

Remember, to meet the minimum requirements of DACA, you must prove that you entered the United States before the age of 16; have been continuously present in the United States since July 2007; did not have lawful status on June 15, 2012; have not departed the United States since June 2012; have graduated high school or are currently in school or have been honorably discharged from the military or Coast Guard; and have not been convicted of a felony offense, a significant misdemeanor, or more than three misdemeanors and do not pose a threat to national security or public safety.

If you currently have DACA and are concerned about your DACA status, please schedule a consultation with Jewish Family Service’s Immigration Services Department (contact information below) and we can help you understand any concern you may have.

 

(2) What does the decision mean for those who need to renew their DACA status because it is close to expiration?

For anyone who has ever been approved DACA status and seeks to renew their status, the government will continue to accept your application and, if you still meet the minimum requirements of DACA (see requirements above), your application may be approved.

If you currently have DACA and are concerned about your DACA status, please schedule a consultation with Jewish Family Service’s Immigration Services Department (contact information below) and we can help you understand any concern you may have.

 

(3) What does the decision mean for those who have previously held DACA but it expired over a year before they apply to renew it?

 For all those who have previously held DACA, even if it expired over a year before a renewal application is submitted, as long as you continue to meet the requirements for DACA set out above, you can still apply for DACA and the application can still be decided.

 

(4) What does the decision mean for those who have submitted their first-ever application for DACA but have not received a decision on that application?

For all those whose first application for DACA is currently pending, the decision affects the ability of U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS – the agency that reviews the applications) to review the application. At this time, please follow instructions from USCIS, posted to its website here, regarding any biometrics requests on pending initial DACA applications.

 

(5) What does the decision mean for those who are eligible for DACA but have not yet submitted an application?

For all who qualify to apply for DACA but have not yet submitted a first-time application, the decision does not prevent you from filing an application if USCIS (the agency that reviews immigration applications) accepts it. We are still currently waiting on more information from that agency. Check the USCIS website here frequently for more information.

Important Note: while you may be able to submit a first-time DACA application if USCIS accepts it, the government cannot make a decision on the application until there is a further order by a court or a new law deciding what to do with those applications. There are risks and benefits associated with filing an application that at this time cannot be decided so please consult with someone from the Jewish Family Service of San Diego Immigration Services Department or a reputable immigration attorney or other organization.

 

(6) What does the decision mean for Advance Parole under DACA?

If you currently have DACA, you can still request advance parole for humanitarian, education or employment purposes and it can still be approved. USCIS clarified this in a statement on July 19, 2021. If you have a question or concern about advance parole, to seek assistance applying for advance parole, or to find out about the risks of travelling on advance parole, please schedule a consultation with Jewish Family Service’s Immigration Services Department (contact information below).

 

DACA ASSISTANCE INFORMATION

We want you to know the JFS Immigration Services Department continues to be available to assist and support you and our community. Please, feel free to contact our legal team with any concerns or questions.

Remember, if you are a DACA recipient and within 150 days of expiration of your work permit it is recommended you apply for renewal. We can help you reapply.

To reach us:

  • If you are attending a San Diego or Imperial Valley-based college or university, call (858) 637-3345 or email: [email protected]
  • for everyone else seeking immigration assistance, contact us at (858) 637-3365 (please leave a message or your call will not be returned) or email: [email protected]

Note on privacy:
While we encourage an open discussion about DACA to provide those affected by decisions relating to DACA with a safe space in which they can be heard and supported, allies must remember the importance of confidentiality when assisting someone who is undocumented or DACAmented. For that reason, if someone confides in you about their immigration status or the status of a family member, do not share their information, unless you have received express consent to do.

DACA Update & Know Your Rights

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