On November 20, 2014, President Barack Obama announced that, within six months, United States Customs and Immigration Services (USCIS) would begin accepting applications for Deferred Action for Parents of Americans and Legal Permanent Residents (DAPA). If your application for DAPA is approved you will be able to stay in the United States without fear of removal for three years intervals. DAPA applicants will be eligible for employment authorization (EAD), social security number and may apply for a driver’s license.
The criteria for DAPA are as follows: (1) live in the United States continuously from January 1, 2010 to present; (2) physically present in the United States on November 20, 2014; (3) physically present in the United States at the time of filing for DAPA; (4) no lawful status on November 20, 2014; (5) had a United States citizen or legal permanent resident child of any age and whether married or unmarried on November 20, 2014; (6) have not been convicted of a felony, significant misdemeanor or three or more other misdemeanors; (7) do not pose a threat to national security; and (8) are not an enforcement priority for removal.
A federal district court in Texas granted a preliminary injunction temporarily blocking implementation of DAPA (State of Texas, et al v. United States, 02/16/2015). On February 17th, 2015 the White House issued a statement on the injunction stating the “decision wrongly prevents these lawful, commonsense policies from taking effect and the Department of Justice has indicated that it will appeal that decision.” The federal government filed an emergency expedited motion on February 23, 2015 requesting the court stay, pending appeal, its February 16, 2015 Order, or in the alternative, stay its Order beyond application in Texas. Unfortunately, DAPA is on hold for the moment and eligible parents are being removed from the United States while the Court battle continues.
If you or a loved one meets the above criteria contact Miller|Conway to speak to an immigration attorney regarding immigration benefits potentially available to you.