U.S. Department of Homeland Security Secretary (DHS) announced a final rule that will preserve and fortify the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) policy for certain eligible noncitizens who arrived in the United States as children, deferring their removal and allowing them an opportunity to access a renewable, two-year work permit. Since its inception in 2012, DACA has allowed over 800,000 young people to remain in the only country many of them have ever known, with their families. Across the country, DACA recipients are doctors and nurses, working to ensure the health and safety of Americans; they are teachers, striving to give back to younger generations; they are members of our military serving to protect our country; they are our neighbors, friends, and family.
The DACA Final Regulation continues the DACA policy as announced in the 2012 Napolitano Memorandum and is based on longstanding USCIS practice. The rule embraces the consistent judgment that has been maintained by the Department—and by three presidential administrations since the policy first was announced—that DACA recipients should not be a priority for removal.
The DACA Final Regulation:
- Maintains the existing threshold criteria for DACA;
- Retains the existing process for DACA requestors to seek work authorization; and
- Affirms the longstanding policy that DACA is not a form of lawful status but that DACA recipients, like other deferred action recipients, are considered “lawfully present” for certain purposes.
The DACA Final Regulation is effective Monday, October 31, 2022. However, while a July 16, 2021, injunction from the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Texas remains in effect, DHS is prohibited from granting initial DACA requests and related employment authorization under the final rule. DHS presently may grant DACA renewal requests only under the final rule.
For more information on DACA Final Regulation,
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