On January 20, 2021, President Joe Biden signed several executive actions on his first day of office. One of those actions aims to strengthen the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program that protects hundreds of thousands of undocumented immigrants who arrived in the United States as young children, from getting deported and provides them with work permits for a period of two years.
The executive action directs the Homeland Security Secretary, with assistance from the Attorney General, to take any proper, lawful action to accomplish this goal. Furthermore, Biden sent a sweeping immigration reform bill to Congress on Wednesday, which also includes a provision that would allow individuals with DACA protections to become U.S. citizens.
According to the bill, Dreamers – along with undocumented farmers and migrants with Temporary Protective Status (TPS) – would be eligible for permanent legal residency immediately. After three years, they may apply for U.S. citizenship. Other undocumented immigrants may qualify for a work permit and apply for a green card after five years, then undergo the naturalization process after three years.
President Trump had attempted to end DACA in 2017, but the U.S. Supreme Court ruled against the administration in June 2020 because it did not adhere to the proper procedure in terminating the program. In the end, the nation’s highest court restored DACA to how it previously operated before 2017.
President Barack Obama enacted DACA in 2012, while Biden was the Vice President. Since then, around 800,000 young people have applied for the program, while approximately 1.8 million people are eligible.
If you are interested in applying for the DACA program in Arizona, contact our Phoenix immigration attorney at Kanu & Associates, P.C. today at (602) 353-7795 for a case evaluation. Se habla Español.