We are honored to have Marisa Balderas Flores, a fantastic immigration attorney, join our practice as Of Counsel focusing on immigration issues. With all of the changes a new Presidency brings, particularly to the area of immigration, we asked her to write a blog on a topic du jour – DACA. Here is her take on DACA:
Since the election of a new President in November 2016, the immigrant community has been instilled with a sense of fear and uncertainty as enforcement efforts have been stepped up across the nation by Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE). These enforcement efforts have even targeted some Deferred Action for Childhood Arrival (DACA) recipients. Under the program started via Executive Order by President Obama, certain individuals brought to the United States as children and who meet the presence and good moral character requirements are protected from deportation for two years and are eligible for a work authorization permit. Now with a new President in office, there is concern that the DACA program will be terminated, and that the Executive Order promulgated by President Obama will be overturned. Additionally, DACA recipients are left wondering if they will be able to renew their DACA status.
The DACA program has benefitted over 700,000 individuals in obtaining work authorization permits, driver’s licenses and other benefits, and as of this writing, remains in effect. For those individuals needing to renew their DACA status, you may continue to do so for as long as the program remains active. Furthermore, for individuals that meet the eligibility requirements and that may have still not applied, new applications are still being accepted and processed by USCIS.
While the future of the program may be unclear, for now DACA continues to be an avenue for eligible applicants to obtain work authorization, among other benefits.
If you have any questions regarding your DACA application or renewal, please contact Begum Pelaez-Prada Law.
By: Marisa Balderas Flores, Of Counsel-Immigration