In Nevada, Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) allows certain aliens to avoid removal and achieve a temporary immigration status. However, deferred action is not a permanent fix: (1) it does not guarantee a green card or citizenship, and (2) it may be revoked at any time.
White House Policy and Court Rulings
On September 5, 2017, The Trump administration announced it was terminating DACA. However, on January 9, 2018, a federal judge issued a nationwide injunction ordering the administration to resume the program. Consequently, the United States Citizenship and Immigration Services has stated that for now “DACA will be operated on the same terms in place before it was rescinded.” And on December 4, 2020, a federal judge ordered that DACA be fully reinstated right away.
People previously granted deferred action can request a renewal if the deferred action expired on or before September 5, 2016. People who had been granted DACA, but whose deferred action expired before September 5, 2016 can file a new request.
What Can I Do if I Am a DACA Recipient?
DACA recipients who have received advance parole can leave and reenter the United States now. For a married DACA recipient who has not yet gotten advance parole, a 601a waiver is an option.
We offer free consultations to help “Dreamers” consider their legal options and avoid deportation.
To help you better understand how DACA works in Nevada, our Las Vegas deferred action attorneys answer the following frequently-asked-questions below:
- 1. Can I get immigration status under “DACA”?
- 2. How old do I have to be for “DACA”?
- 3. How do I get DACA in Nevada?
- 4. How much does DACA relief cost?
- 5. How long does it take to get DACA relief?
- 6. Can I work under DACA?
- 7. Can I travel under DACA?
For the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) to grant an alien immigration status under DACA, the alien must meet the conditions below. (Note that deferred action may be available whether the alien is currently in removal, has a final order or removal, or has never been in removal proceedings.)
- He/she was under 31 years old as of June 15, 2012;
- He/she came to the U.S. before his/her 16th birthday;
- He/she has continuously resided in the U.S. since June 15, 2007, up to the present;
- He/she was present in the U.S. on June 15, 2012, and at the time of making the request to be considered for deferred action with USCIS;
- He/she had entered without inspection before June 15, 2012, or his/her lawful immigration status expired as of that date;
- He/she is currently in school, has graduated or obtained a certificate of completion from high school, has obtained a general education development (GED) certificate, or is an honorably discharged veteran of the Coast Guard or Armed Forces of the U.S.; and
- He/she has not been convicted of a felony, significant misdemeanor, three or more other misdemeanors, and does not otherwise pose a threat to national security or public safety.
Significant misdemeanors under DACA:
As stated above, non-citizens convicted of a significant misdemeanor are not eligible for DACA. The term “significant misdemeanor” includes:
- domestic violence,
- sexual abuse or exploitation,
- unlawful possession of firearms,
- driving under the influence, or
- drug distribution/trafficking.
These listed offenses will be considered “significant” under the policy regardless of the person’s sentence. Along with this list, any other misdemeanor that involved a sentence of more than 90 days in jail will most likely be considered a significant misdemeanor.1
There is a strict age bracket that a person must fit within to be qualified for deferred action under DACA:
The first condition is that the person must be at least 15 years old at the time he/she applies for deferred action. And if a person was 31 years of age or older as of June 15, 2012, he/she will not be eligible for the status. Therefore, deferred action tends to benefit young adults.2
The DACA applicant needs to complete and submit three forms along with supporting documentation to the USCIS no later than September 5, 2017:
The applicant also needs to pay the proper filing fee (unless it is exempted) and give his/her biometrics (in the form of fingerprints). Note that Nevada has two immigration offices that offer fingerprinting services: Las Vegas immigration office, and Reno immigration office.
Current DACA recipients who wish to renew their status must do so no later than October 5, 2017.
About 90 days.
Yes. Once granted deferred action under DACA, an alien may apply for employment authorization.
Certain travel may affect a person’s application for deferred action. Straying from the continuous presence element may hinder the person from achieving deferred action…
For example, traveling outside the U.S. prior to August 15, 2012 has no impact if the travel was brief, casual, and innocent. However, if travel outside the U.S. occurred after August 15, 2012 and before the person’s request for deferred action is adjudicated, the person will be prohibited from receiving a deferred action status.3
Need a Nevada immigration attorney? Call us…
If you are seeking relief through DACA or other immigration services, contact our Las Vegas immigration attorneys who may be able to guide you through the process. Call us for a consultation.
- Deferred Action, DHS; Trump’s Bid to End DACA Blocked by Supreme Court, Wall Street Journal (June 18, 2020); Caitlin Dickerson and , Judge Orders Government to Fully Reinstate DACA Program, New York Times (December 4, 2020).
- Eligibility for Deferred Action, DHS.