On July 28, 2020, the acting Secretary of Homeland Security, Chad Wolfe, issued a memorandum that stated U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) would be rejecting all initial requests for Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) along with any new or pending requests for advanced parole absent exceptional circumstances. Additionally, Mr. Wolfe limited the period of renewed deferred action to one year. Mr. Wolfe’s memorandum was issued after the Supreme Court ruled the Trump Administration could not end the DACA program which has provided protection to hundreds of thousands of immigrants.
For months, many DACA recipients and those wanting to apply were uncertain as to what was going to happen to the program seeing that Mr. Wolfe was not complying with the Supreme Court’s decision to keep the program operating. It wasn’t until December 7, 2020, when USCIS was forced to comply with a new order that was issued by a U.S. District Court in New York that now requires the agency to accept DACA applications.
More About the U.S. District Court’s Decision
According to the Department of Homeland Security (DHS), the court ruling was made after it was determined that “Mr. Wolf was not lawfully serving as Acting Secretary of Homeland Security under the Homeland Security Act (“HSA”) when he issued the July 28, 2020 memorandum.” An order was later issued that now requires USCIS to do the following:
- Accept new applications for consideration of deferred action under the DACA program.
- Accept DACA renewal requests.
- Accept applications for advance parole documents.
- Extend one-year grants of deferred action under DACA to two years.
- Extend one-year employment authorization documents to two years.
The agency will base all decisions on the terms of the DACA policy that were in effect prior to September 5, 2017.
Applying for DACA
Although USCIS is required to accept new DACA applications, DHS has stated that it may seek relief from the order which means anyone who is looking to submit a new application for DACA or a request for renewal must do so while the order is in effect. Now, because the application process can be lengthy and confusing, it is best that an individual who is looking to apply for DACA retain an Atlanta, GA immigration lawyer to assist them with the application process.
From filling out forms to getting them submitted to the appropriate USCIS office, the Atlanta, GA immigration attorneys at Kuck | Baxter Immigration are prepared to help those seeking protection under the DACA program obtain it. For more information on the DACA program or to speak with an immigration lawyer in Atlanta regarding the application process, contact Kuck | Baxter Immigration at 404-816-8611.
Kuck | Baxter Immigration can be reached at:
365 Northridge Road, Suite 300
Atlanta, GA 30350