What is Expanded DACA?

President Obama announced, under his Executive Order, Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) in June of 2012 that allows certain undocumented immigrants who entered the United States prior to their sixteenth birthday to receive a work permit and exemption from deportation. In November of 2014, President Obama announced changes to DACA which would expand it to include illegal immigrants, expand the entry date, eliminate the requirement that applicants be younger than 31 years old, and lengthen the renewable deferral period from two years to three years. The expanded DACA program will allow an estimated 300,000 additional individuals who came to the United States as children to qualify. Under the current program, DACA is limited to individuals who entered before June 15, 2007.  Under the expanded DACA program, new DACA-eligible immigrants will be able to qualify if they entered before January 1, 2010, as long as they are able to show evidentiary proof.

Expanded DACA, like DAPA, is currently on hold, pending the outcome of the Supreme Court ruling. The Supreme Court was supposed to start hearing the Immigration Executive Order Case on Expanded DACA and DAPA starting in April, with an expected ruling date of June.  However, due to Justice Scalia’s recent death, the hearing may be put on hold until President Obama nominates a replacement justice.  If the Supreme Court decides to go forward with the Expanded DACA and DAPA case as scheduled, it will be interesting to see how the justices rule, given a somewhat evenly divided court in terms of number of liberals versus conservatives.

If you are contemplating filing for the Expanded DACA program, it is advisable to seek the counsel of an immigration lawyer to guide you through the intricacies of the DACA filing process.  New Jersey Immigration Attorney, Edward Shulman, is a leading expert on DACA and successfully assisted hundreds of clients with their initial DACA applications.  Should Expanded DACA be approved by the Supreme Court, our immigration law office would be delighted to help you prepare an approvable DACA application.  We urge eligible candidates to contact our immigration law office to schedule a consultation appointment to ensure that you have all of the proper documentation in advance of the Supreme Court decision on Expanded DACA.  You do not want to be scrambling at the last minute for paperwork and proofs needed to file the Expanded DACA forms.  Mr. Shulman recommends that you have all of the paperwork ready so if Expanded DACA passes, you will be at the front of the line with higher chances of obtaining an expedient and affirmative granting of DACA.