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What Does the DACA Final Rule Mean?

The Biden administration has issued a final rule on the DACA program for undocumented immigrants brought to the U.S. as children with the goal of strengthening the program against future legal challenges. The U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS) issued a final rule on DACA that Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas said 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.” 

The DACA final rule is effective Monday, October 31, 2022, and will temporarily allow over 611,000 immigrant Dreamers to live and work in the U.S. legally without fear of deportation. DACA was first put into effect by an executive memo in 2012 and has faced many legal challenges.

To Preserve and Fortify DACA

The new rule keeps most of the original DACA program in place as implemented in 2012, but DACA is still vulnerable to legal challenges. The DACA final rule

  • applies only to DACA renewal requests, not to new DACA requests
  • maintains the existing threshold criteria for DACA that the applicant must have entered the U.S. and resided continuously in the U.S. since June 15, 2007
  • retains the existing process for DACA requesters to seek work authorization and that the DACA application be filed at the same time as the work authorization application
  • 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

Expunged Convictions

The DACA final rule also says that “expunged convictions, juvenile delinquency adjudications, and immigration-related offenses characterized as felonies or misdemeanors under State laws” will not automatically make someone ineligible for DACA.

Learn More: The 10th Anniversary of DACA

Do You Have Questions About DACA?

An experienced DACA lawyer can explain the new policy developments around U.S. immigration laws and how they might affect your DACA status. Knowledge of the legal system is a powerful tool to protect people from deportation. To discuss your situation, call 630-912-0322 to schedule a consultation with one of our experienced DACA attorneys today.

Godoy Law Office serves the entire Chicago, Illinois area including DuPage, Cook, Kane, Will and Lake Counties.

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