President Obama’s Deferred Action program – which will allow eligible immigrants to change their status and postpone possible deportation – offers significant hope for what some estimate to be nearly 1.5 million young undocumented immigrants currently in the country.
The application process is scheduled to begin on August 15, 2012. What can you do in the meantime to prepare? Three things:
1. Get your papers in order:
“These authorities have made it clear that individuals who wish to qualify for deferred action must be prepared to present documentation that will prove that they: (1) came to the U.S. before age 16; (2) have resided in the U.S. continuously for at least five years prior to and including June 15, 2012 (when the program became effective); and (3) are currently enrolled in or graduated from high school, have a GED or have honorably served in the Coast Guard or Armed Forces of the United States.” (Documentation Needed for Deferred Action by Ronald Shapiro)
2. Stay out of trouble:
“To be eligible for the relief under this new policy, you must not have been convicted of a felony offense, a significant misdemeanor offense, multiple misdemeanor offense, or otherwise pose a threat to national security or public safety. If you do not have any prior criminal offenses, that’s great - be sure to keep it that way.” (Top 3 Things to Do to Prepare for Obama’s DREAMer Policy by Tanya Lee)
3. Talk to a lawyer:
“… some advocacy groups are already saying that if the application form the government provides is short and simple, attorney representation is not needed… It is not the length of the form that creates the need for an attorney… It is the need to understand the risks of applying and any alternatives available to a particular person. It is also the choice of documents being presented and how to present them. And attorneys have ethical duties and guidelines and can be disciplined (their license suspended or revoked) if they do not follow those guidelines.” (Do you need an attorney to apply for Deferred Action for “DREAMERs”? by Davis, Brown, Koehn, Shors & Roberts, P.C.)
• New Immigration Benefits, Including Employment Authorization, For Some Unauthorized Immigrant Workers - Davis, Brown, Koehn, Shors & Roberts, P.C.
• Legislation vs. Administrative Reliefs, Part II - NPZ Law Group, P.C.
• Executive order: Dream Act or nightmare? - Eli Kantor
• Immigration Enforcement and Deferred Action - Ronald Shapiro
• It’s Not Exactly Dream Act. The Provisions Are Cornerstone Of What Dream Act Was - NPZ Law Group, P.C.
• Obama’s Executive Order and the I-9 Compliance Implications - Ford & Harrison LLP
• Not Quite the DREAM Act for Military DREAMers - Lane Powell PC
• Implementing the President’s Deferred Action Policy - Ronald Shapiro
• Exercising Prosecutorial Discretion with Respect to Individuals Who Came to the United States as Children - Janet Napolitano, Secretary of Homeland Security
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