U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services announced yesterday it will begin accepting new applications for Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) and make other changes to restore the program to the terms in effect before the Trump administration tried to terminate it in September 2017.

Key Points:

Effective immediately, USCIS is taking the following steps to comply with a Dec. 4 court order by a federal judge in New York.

  • Accept first-time DACA requests and renewal requests based on the terms in effect before September 2017.
  • Accept applications for advance parole documents by DACA recipients based on the terms in effect before September 2017.
  • Extend one-year grants of DACA to two years.
  • Extend one-year DACA-related employment authorization documents (EADs) to two years.

Background: On June 18, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled that the Trump administration’s termination of DACA was unlawful. In July, USCIS announced it would continue to accept only renewal DACA applications, not new applications, and imposed new limitations on renewals of DACA and related EADs by issuing them for one year instead of the normal two-year period, and issuing advance parole in limited circumstances only. On Dec. 4, a U.S. District Court ordered the government to reinstate the DACA policy to the terms that existed under the Obama administration. In its announcement yesterday, the agency noted that it would comply with the court order while it remains in effect, but may appeal it.

This alert has been provided by the BAL U.S. Practice group. For additional information, please contact berryapplemanleiden@bal.com.

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