How to Qualify for Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals

Each year, many people immigrate to the United States as a means of seeking refuge or the opportunity to seek out employment. The US Citizenship and Immigration Services department works hard to ensure that the people who immigrate here do so with valid intents. Typically, those who are a risk to either national security or public safety are deported. However, as a means to prevent wasted resources, especially on those who immigrated to the US as children, the USCIS has set forth guidelines as a means of allowing these immigrants the opportunity to apply for citizenship using what is known as the deferred action for childhood arrivals – otherwise known as DACA.

How to Qualify

There are several criteria that must be met before a person can qualify under the DACA provision. In order to request consideration under this provision, the individual must meet the following:

  1. The person must have been under the age of 31 on or before June 15, 2012.
  2. Must have immigrated to the United States prior to reaching their 16th birthday
  3. Must have lived in the United States continuously from June 15, 2007 until now.
  4. Must have been actively living in the United States on June 15, 2012 as well as at the point in time when making the request for consideration under DACA with USCIS.
  5. Two factors must apply in regards to inspection – the immigrant must have entered into the United States before June 15, 2012 without inspection, or they must have had their immigration status expire as of this date.
  6. Immigrants must currently be registered in school or have graduated from high school. Immigrants are also eligible if they have completed their GED.
  7. The immigrant is an honorably discharged member of the Armed Forces of the United States or the Coast Guard.
  8. Holds no convictions of the following: a single felony, a significant misdemeanor, three or more misdemeanors other than a significant one. The immigration must also not pose a threat to either public safety or national security.

All of these criteria must be met and are contingent based upon verification. The reason why the USCIS is seeking to help these individuals is because they hold a promise of being a good, upstanding citizen of the United States. The USCIS only works to deport immigrants who are a significant risk to the general population.


How to Get Started

Individuals who are seeking to qualify under this provision should get in touch with an immigration attorney as soon as possible. The immigration attorney can help prepare the necessary paperwork and will advise the individual of their rights while they are seeking immunity. The process can be lengthy and difficult for immigrants to understand, especially since it is a complicated legal matter. With a qualified immigrant lawyer, however, the chances for being granted citizenship under this provision significantly increase.

Our CCA immigration detention and deportation attorneys can help you with your deferred action case.

Individuals who are looking for legal assistance on this matter can call us at San Diego Immigration Law Center at: 619-827- 8777 or visit us online at