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Carl Shusterman's Immigration Update

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  1. DACA is Ending – What You Should Do Now



    On September 5, the Trump Administration announced that DACA which has shielded over 800,000 young people who were brought to the US as children from deportation for the past 5 years was coming to an end.


    The USCIS will no longer accept new applications for DACA or for advance parole travel permits.

    However, for a brief period of time which ends on October 5, 2017, current DACA recipients whose DACA status expires prior to March 5, 2018 may apply to renew their status and EADs for another 2 years. If you fit into this category, be sure to apply for a DACA and EAD renewal immediately.


    Although USCIS will not accept new applications for advance parole from DACA recipients and will return all pending applications for advance parole, if you already have an advance parole through DACA that you have not used and you last entered the US without inspection, you may want to travel abroad and return to the US with your advance parole document. This may allow you to adjust your status in the US in the future. Please see DACA Renewals – Plus DACA To Green Card!.


    In addition, there are a variety of other immigration benefits that you may be eligible for. These are detailed in Screening Potential DACA Requestors for Other Forms of Relief published by the American Immigration Council.


    We link to the various government memos regarding the termination of the program from End of DACA Program – Frequently Asked Questions.


    Will Congress pass a bill to provide DREAMers with a path to US citizenship, or at least to protect them from deportation after March 5, 2018?


    That’s anyone’s guess.


    The DREAM Act was first introduced back in 2001, and has never been passed by Congress. Whether Congress will act to protect the DREAMers in 2017-18 remains to be seen.


    There are currently 4 bills in Congress to help the Dreamers. There has been much speculation as to whether the Democrats and President Trump can make a deal to help the Dreamers the way they did recently on the short term hike in the debt ceiling.


    Several states are suing the Administration over the DACA termination. So is the University of California.


    Religious leaders from many faiths have condemned President Trump's decision to phase out DACA. Representative Luis Gutierrez (D-IL) has threatened to shut down the government if the House of Representatives fails to pass the DREAM Act.


    Some commentators had concluded that there is a racial basis for ending DACA and attempting to restrict immigration to the US.


    I watched Steve Bannon on "60 Minutes" last night. He stated that he was all in favor of ending DACA and that the answer to the problem is for the Dreamers to "self-deport". Outrageous!


    If you are also upset about how the 800,000 young DACA recipients are being treated, this is the time for you to act. Take a few minutes and let the White House and your Members of Congress know that it is important to you that they protect the Dreamers.


    With DACA ending, it is important that we Act Now For Dreamers.

    Updated 09-12-2017 at 01:33 PM by CShusterman

  2. 10 States to Trump: End DACA or We’ll Sue You!

    Although many people see President Trump as the most anti-immigrant President in recent history, to others, he is not anti-immigrant enough.


    In a memo issued on June 15, 2017, DHS Secretary John Kelley rescinded the Obama Administration's memorandum expanding the DACA program and creating the DAPA program for certain parents of US citizens. However, the memo declared that the original DACA program created in 2012 for children who were brought to the US at a young age by their parents “will remain in place”.


    On June 29, the Attorneys General of Texas and 9 other states (Arkansas, Alabama, Idaho, Kansas, Louisiana, Nebraska, South Carolina, Tennessee and West Virginia) sent a letter to US Attorney General Jeff Sessions threatening to bring an action in Federal Court to declare that the DACA program is unconstitutional unless the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) phases out the program.


    [sc name="Review Block" image="/images/photo6.gif" title="Know Their Job Well And Perform It Flawlessly" review="Don’t do the mistake we did and try to save few bucks going with nonprofessionals and sole practitioners! It will end up not only costing you much more in the long run, but also putting your status in jeopardy which can have a priceless impact. It is one of the most important steps in your life." reviewer="- Sgt. Danny Lightfoot, Los Angeles, California"]


    The letter demands that DHS rescind the 2012 memorandum which created DACA, and not renew or issue any DACA permits in the future. If DHS does so by September 5, the letter states that the plaintiffs will voluntarily dismiss their lawsuit.


    However, if the DHS does not do so, the letter states that the complaint challenging DAPA and the expanded DACA program in Texas v. United States will be amended to include the existing DACA program.


    Both the DAPA and expanded DACA programs have been enjoined by the Federal Courts. The Supreme Court has remanded the case to the District Court Judge in Texas to rule on the merits of the case.


    The bottom line is that these 10 Attorney Generals want the DACA program to be abolished thereby making the nearly 800,000 Dreamers who benefit from DACA undocumented aliens once again, subject to deportation.


    How did Attorney General Sessions react to the threatening letter? Was he offended?


    Apparently not.


    On “Fox and Friends”, Sessions stated: “… I like it that our states and localities are holding our federal government to account, expecting us to do what is our responsibility to the state and locals, and that’s to enforce the law.”


    Will President Trump cave in and end the DACA program? If he does, Dreamers will be an easy target for DHS to deport since the government has each of their addresses.


    There are some limited options for certain DACA recipients to apply for green cards before the program is rescinded or struck down by the Supreme Court a couple of years from now.


    But for the majority of DACA recipients, the best post-DACA plan of action may be to change their addresses.


    And is it even remotely possible that Congress would pass a law to protect the Dreamers? Perhaps, but only if they are pressured by their constituents to do so.


    Stay tuned!
  3. Senators Introduce Bill to Protect Dreamers

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ID:	1147 On December 9, 2016, a bipartisan group of Senators introduced the Bridge Act which would protect 740,000 DACA recipients from deportation and allow them to continue working and studying in the United States for the next 3 years.

    Like DACA, the bill does not provide a path to green cards for Dreamers. Instead, the bill would grant them “provisional protected presence” in the US. They would be allowed to remain in the US, renew their EAD work permits and, in some circumstances, qualify for Advance Parole international travel permits.

    Since President-Elect Trump has vowed to repeal President Obama’s executive orders, the bill, if enacted, would protect Dreamers from deportation for another 3 years unless they commit a deportable offense.

    The bill would also tighten the confidentiality provisions in the law. DACA requires applicants to reveal their addresses and other personal information. The bill would prohibit the government from using this information to try to deport DACA recipients or their parents.

    Although the bill is sponsored by a bipartisan group of Democratic and Republican Senators, it is unclear whether it has enough support to pass the Republican-controlled Senate and the House of Representatives.

    The introduction of the Bridge Act is expected to put pressure on President-Elect Trump to work out a solution to the immigration status of the Dreamers.

    Trump has been equivocal about how he intends to treat the Dreamers.

    On one hand, he has pledged to repeal DACA. However, in a recent interview with Time magazine, he stated:

    “We’re going to work something out that’s going to make people happy and proud. But that’s a very tough situation. They got brought here at a very young age, they’ve worked here, they’ve gone to school here. Some were good students. Some have wonderful jobs. And they’re in never-never land because they don’t know what’s going to happen.”

    Stay tuned.
  4. Obama's New Immigration Policy

    http://shusterman.com/images/obamas-immigration-policy.jpg On November 20, 2014, President Obama announced his long-awaited changes to our broken immigration system. None of the changes will take place immediately, and some hoped-for changes like recapture of lost EB numbers and counting only principals toward the 140,000 EB cap were not included in the new policy.

    Nevertheless, for 4-5 million persons, most of them undocumented, there is considerable good news.


    1. Deferred Action Relief for Parents (DARP) - Parents of young persons granted DACA will not receive any benefits under the President's new policy. However, certain parents of US citizens and green card holders will be able to apply for relief and work cards under DARP.


    The age of the child is irrelevant. Even if you are 50+ years old and your son/daughter gets a green card through his/her citizen spouse, you may be eligible for DARP. To qualify, you need to have resided in the US since January 1, 2010 and not be in lawful status on November 20, 2014. The background checks will be similar to those for DACA applicants. You can qualify even if you are under removal proceedings or are subject to a Final Order of Removal.


    The work permit and biometrics fee is currently $465.


    The application period will start in the Spring of 2015.


    2. Expansion of the DACA Program - The 31-year-old age cap for the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program will be removed. You must have be present in the US on January 1, 2010 (rather than on June 15, 2007) to qualify and be under the age of 16 when you entered the US. DACA work permits will now be issued for 3 years at a time instead of 2 years. You must be present in the US on November 20, 2014 and not be in lawful status.


    The application period will start within 90 days of November 20, 2014.


    3. Employment-Based (EB) Benefits - Most of these promised benefits are in the "Coming Attractions" category since they require regulations. We are informed that the long-awaited regulations for work permits for certain H-4 spouses will soon be finalized.


    Also, that certain persons with approved EB petitions who are waiting for their priority dates to become current may eventually be permitted to "pre-register" for adjustment of status which will allow them to obtain EADs and APs, and to change jobs. Regarding OPT, the STEM category will be expanded and the length of STEM-OPT extensions will grow. Also promised are benefits for foreign-born entrepreneurs.


    Again, don't look for any of these benefits in your Christmas stocking next month. Perhaps by the end of 2015.


    4. Other Benefits - These include items that have been on many immigrants' wish lists for years and years:

    • I-601A Provisional Waivers - Will be expanded to include spouses and children of LPRs;
    • Parole-in-Place - Will be expanded;
    • Advance Parole - DHS will apply standards in Matter of Arrabally-Yerrabelly;
    • Promises, Promises - DHS will clarify legal terms of art including "extreme hardship", "specialized knowledge", "same or similar" and everything from the PERM process to Immigration Court proceedings will be improved and modernized.



    Free Webinar


    Have any questions about President Obama's New Immigration Policy?


    Of course you do!


    Please sign-up for a Free Webinar about Obama's new immigration policy in which I will participate in along with attorneys from Wolfsdorf Rosenthal on Monday, December 1st at 12:30pm, Pacific Time.


    Need More Information?


    We link to DHS's "Fixing Our Broken Immigration System through Executive Action".


    This page links to over a dozen fun-filled pages designed which attempt to explain the changes to our immigration system being contemplated by the DHS.

    Updated 11-21-2014 at 01:30 PM by CShusterman

  5. DACA Renewals - Plus DACA to Green Card!

    http://r.b5z.net/i/u/10077145/i/daca-ead-300x206.png On June 5, DHS Secretary Jeh Johnson announced the process for persons who have received work permits (EADs) under the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) programs to renew their DACA status and work permits for another 2 years. Also, in this article, we describe the process by which persons in DACA status can obtain green cards.

    Since the summer of 2012, over 560,000 persons who entered the United States as children have obtaining lawful status through the DACA program. However, later this year and next, their status is due to expire.

    Renewal Process

    The DHS has unveiled the process for them to extend their DACA status and EADs in the U.S.

    They must begin by completing the newly-reissued form I-821D, Consideration for Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals, plus form I-765 for a new EAD (along with a filing fee for $465) as well as the I-765 worksheet. They must also submit their fingerprints and photos. The DHS will conduct a background check.

    In order to maintain eligibility for DACA, an applicant must:

    • Not have departed the U.S. since August 15, 2012 unless they did so pursuant to a grant of “advance parole”;
    • Not have been convicted of a felony, a significant misdemeanor or three or more misdemeanors; and
    • Not pose a threat to national security or public safety.


    USCIS reminds applicants to submit their renewal applications at least 120 days before their current DACA application is due to expire. However, it may be prudent to do so 180 days before the expiry date.

    From DACA to Green Card

    Since many persons with DACA cards entered the U.S. “without inspection”, they have been told that it is impossible to become a lawful permanent residents of the U.S. because they did not enter the U.S. legally.

    However, this is not necessarily true.

    Persons with DACA card are eligible to apply for permission to travel outside the U.S. under the following circumstances:

    • Humanitarian
    • Employment
    • Education


    If you obtain “advance parole” to travel abroad, be aware that when you return to the U.S., you last admission to the U.S. is lawful.

    Therefore, should you marry your U.S. citizen fiancé, you can immediately apply for a green card. The whole procedure takes place in the U.S. and is usually completed within a matter of months.

    Updated 06-05-2014 at 03:27 PM by CShusterman

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