|Posted on November 22, 2014 at 1:20 PM|
On November 20, 2014, President Obama, acting within his legal authority, like many of his predecessors before him, announced a series of executive orders on immigration. This executive order will offer temporary relief to over five million of undocumented immigrants.
Some of the most critical executive orders are as follows:
Cracking down on illegal immigration at the border
The President’s actions increase the chances that anyone attempting to cross the border illegally today will be caught and sent back. This will also centralize border security command-and-control to continue to crack down on illegal immigration.
Deporting Felons, NOT Families
The President’s actions focus on the deportation of people who threaten national security and public safety. He has directed immigration enforcement to place anyone suspected of terrorism, violent criminals, gang members, and recent border crossers at the top of the deportation priority list.
Expand of Deferred Action for Childhood (DACA) Arrival Program
DACA eligibility will expand to include a broader class of children. Prior to this executive order, DACA eligibility was limited to those who were under 31 years of age on June 15, 2012, who entered the U.S. before June 15, 2007, and who were under 16 years old when they entered. DACA eligibility will be expanded to cover all undocumented immigrants who entered the U.S. before the age of 16, and not just those born after June 15, 1981. This expansion requires continuous residence in the United States since January 1, 2010, rather than the prior requirement of June 15, 2007. It also, expands the employment authorization to three years from the current two years.
Extend Deferred Action for Parents Accountability (DAPA) of U.S. Citizens or Lawful Permanent Resident
An undocumented individual will have the opportunity to request temporary relief from deportation and work authorization for three years, if they come forward and register, submit biometric data, pass background checks, pay fees and show that their child was born on or before November 20, 2014.
Expand Provisional Waivers to Spouses and Children of Lawful Permanent Residents
The spouse and children of Lawful Permanent Residents will have the opportunity request a provisional waiver. The provisional waiver program announced in 2013 allowed the spouses, sons or daughters of U.S. citizens to receive a waiver if a visa is available. Under the President’s action, this provisional waiver will extend to Lawful Permanent Resident Spouses and children as well. There may be instances when the qualifying relative is not the petitioner.
Promote Naturalization Process
Individuals who are eligible to apply for U.S citizenship will educated about the benefits of being a U.S. Citizen. They will have an opportunity to be to use credit cards to pay the application fee and potential partial fee waiver.
Support High-skilled Business and Workers
The President's action authorizes parole, on a case-by-case basis, to eligible inventors, researchers and founders of start-up enterprises who may not yet qualify for a national interest waiver, but who have been awarded substantial U.S. investor financing; or otherwise hold the promise of innovation and job creation through the development of new technologies or the pursuit of cutting-edge research. Finalize a rule to provide work authorization to the spouses of certain H-1B visa holders who are on the path to lawful permanent resident status.
USCIS is not accepting applications at this time. However, individuals who think they may be eligible for one or more of the new initiatives may prepare now by gathering documentation that establishes factors such as their identity, relationship to U.S. Citizen or Lawful Permanent Resident and continuous residence in the U.S for the last five years.
USCIS expects to begin accepting applications for the Expanded DACA program approximately February 20, 2015 and Deferred action for parents of U.S. citizens and lawful permanent residents (Deferred Action for Parental Accountability) approximately April 20, 2015.
For more information or questions regarding your eligibility, please contact our office 888.638.5167