The Obama Administration announced last Friday that it would agree to grant deferred action to undocumented individuals who were brought in to the United States as children. Although deferred action is not permanent legal status, it will allow individuals to remain in the United States and completed their education and obtain work authorization. This is great news for individuals in New York and New Jersey where I have law offices. It appears that the following people would qualify under this new policy: –
- Must be between 15 and 30 years old
- Must have entered the United States before the age of 16
- Have resided in the U.S. for a continuous period of 5 years
- Are currently in school or have graduated from high school, or have obtained a general equivalency degree, or have been honorably discharged from the Coast Guard or Armed Services
- Have not been convicted of one serious crime or multiple minor crimes Applications will need to be submitted to U.S.C.I.S. Even individuals in proceedings may be eligible.
Applications will be decided on a case-by-case basis. If the deferred action is granted to an individual, it will be granted for a period of two years and can be renewed. Along with deferred action, an individual will receive work authorization if an individual is able to demonstrate a financial need for employment.