Fast facts to applying for DACA 2020
FELICIA J. PERSAUD | 12/17/2020, midnight
Based on an order by a United States District Court judge in Brooklyn, NY on Dec. 7, 2020, the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) has now begun again accepting first-time requests for consideration of deferred action under the DACA or the Obama-era Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program.
Here’s how you can apply for the program for the first time as well as seek renewal.
Everyone who submits either an initial DACA application or a DACA renewal application must do so by filling out and submitting the same forms: Form I-821D, Form I-765 Application for Employment Authorization and Form I-765WS Worksheet.
Note that you must use the latest version of Form I-821D. If you don’t use the latest version of Form I-821D, your application will be rejected.
If you are applying for DACA for the first time, you must prove that you initially arrived and established residence in the U.S. prior to age 16. This must be done by providing evidence, such as records showing you attended school or worked in the United States prior to age 16, or that you lived in the United States for multiple years prior to the age of 16.
You also need to include the Date of Initial Entry into the United States––on or about; as well as Place of Initial Entry into the United States––city or port.
When you’re submitting a renewal application, you must fill out all sections of the forms and answer all the questions except those designated “For Initial Requests Only.” You must also submit any new documents relevant to your removal proceedings or criminal history that you have not submitted previously.
See Instructions for Consideration of Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals on the USCIS site for more detailed instructions.
Note that in order to file or renew:
• You must not have departed the U.S. on or after August 15, 2012, without first having been granted advance parole.
• You must have resided continuously in the U.S. from the time you submitted the initial request for DACA up until the present time and;
• You must not have been convicted of a felony, a significant misdemeanor, or three or more misdemeanors, and must not otherwise pose a threat to national security or public safety.
Individuals who receive DACA will not be placed into removal proceedings or removed from the United States for a specified period of time, unless the Department of Homeland Security, (DHS), chooses to terminate the deferral.
Find out when your DACA expires by looking at the I-797 Notice of Action under “Notice Type” or your Employment Authorization Document (EAD) under “Card Expires.”
Next, figure out when your optimal “filing window” is. While you can file your renewal at any time, USCIS recommends that you file your renewal application NO EARLIER THAN 150 days before your DACA expires and NO LATER THAN 120 days before it expires. Filing within this window of time will help you avoid having your DACA and EAD expire.
The fee to request consideration of DACA, including employment authorization and biometric services, is $495, and cannot be waived.
WHERE TO FILE
Application addresses for USCI varies by the state you live. Check Direct Filing Addresses for Form I-821D on the USCIS site to determine the exact location to send the completed application.
To receive an e-Notification after USCIS receives your form, complete Form G-1145, E-Notification of Application/Petition Acceptance, and clip it to the front of your Form I-821D.
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