USCIS Begins Accepting Deferred Action Requests
U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) has released forms, instructions, and additional information relevant to the deferred action for childhood arrivals process. USCIS has begun accepting requests for consideration of deferred action for childhood arrivals.
As background, on June 15, 2012, Secretary of Homeland Security Janet Napolitano announced that certain young people who came to the United States as children and meet other key guidelines may be eligible, on a case-by-case basis, to receive deferred action. USCIS is finalizing a process by which potentially eligible individuals may request consideration of deferred action for childhood arrivals.
At a stakeholder meeting on August 14, USCIS Director Alejandro Mayorkas said that the agency will not share information about applicants and their families with U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) for enforcement purposes.
Individuals requesting consideration of deferred action for childhood arrivals must submit:
- Form I-821D, Consideration of Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals
- Form I-765, Application for Employment Authorization (with accompanying fees; the total is $465, including the biometrics fee and issuance of a secure employment authorization document); and
- I-765WS Worksheet (to establish economic need for employment).
Information shared during a recent media call includes the following highlights:
- Requestors – those in removal proceedings, those with final orders, and those who have never been in removal proceedings – will be able to affirmatively request consideration of deferred action for childhood arrivals with USCIS.
- Requestors will use a form developed for this specific purpose.
- Requestors will mail their deferred action request together with an application for an employment authorization document and all applicable fees to the USCIS lockbox.
- All requestors must provide biometrics and undergo background checks.
- Fee waivers cannot be requested for the application for employment authorization and biometric collection. However, fee exemptions will be available in limited circumstances.
- The four USCIS Service Centers will review requests.
At the stakeholder meeting on August 14, USCIS also noted that educational institutions must be accredited by a state or federal government.
USCIS recently developed a series of related resources, including a website which includes frequently asked questions, guidelines, examples of documentation to provide for evidence, information on fee exemptions and on how to handle cases that are in other immigration processes, a flier, a brochure, and a number of other resources. USCIS encourages individuals with questions to visit this website or call the USCIS National Customer Service line at 1-800-375-5283. See the website and form instructions for details and mailing instructions to the correct USCIS lockbox facility. Processing is expected to take several months.
USCIS’s website says those who are about to be removed by ICE and believe that they meet the guidelines for consideration of deferred action for childhood arrivals should immediately contact either the Law Enforcement Support Center’s hotline at 1-855-448-6903 (staffed 24 hours a day, 7 days a week) or the ICE Office of the Public Advocate through the Office’s hotline at 1-888-351-4024 (staffed 9 a.m. – 5 p.m., Monday through Friday) or by email at EROPublicAdvocate@ice.dhs.gov.