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Work with experienced immigration law attorney to seek protection under DACA, DAPA

In our last post, we wrote about two recent memos released by the Department of Homeland Security concerning immigration policy under President Trump. As we noted, those memos leave in place the Obama-era policies known as DACA and DAPA.

DACA allows children who arrived in the United States on or before January 1, 2010 when they were under the age of 16 to apply for deferred action, meaning that immigration authorities will employ prosecutorial discretion to not enforce removal from the United States. DACA allows these individuals to pursue authorization to work legally in the United States. 

DACA protection is available to any immigrant who meets the age and arrival date requirements, and this includes those who are already in removal proceedings, who already have a voluntary departure order, or who already have a final removal order.

DAPA applies to the parents of U.S. citizens or lawful permanent residents of the United States, whether they came to the United States and had children or came to join their children in the United States. DAPA is a more precarious policy, since some states have filed lawsuits against the Federal government on the argument that the measure violates the Constitution. In 2015, a temporary injunction was placed on enforcement of the established policy until the lawsuit is resolved by the courts. Because of this situation, the enforceability of some aspects of the policy is disputed. That does not necessarily mean, though, that there is no hope for parents who would otherwise qualify for protection under the policy.

Both DACA and DAPA identify various requirements an immigrant must meet to qualify for protection. While it is not necessary to work with an experienced attorney in pursuing protection under these measures, doing so ensure one has the best opportunity for a favorable outcome and for addressing any uncertainties tied up with DAPA.

Source: U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement, Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) and Deferred Action for Parents of Americans and Lawful Permanent Residents (DAPA), Accessed March 2, 2017. 

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