Deferred Action for Certain Young People

The President of the United States announced on June 15, 2012, that in furtherance of his executive power to exercise prosecutorial discretion, and due to the frustration caused by Congress not passing the Dream Act; his administration will begin utilizing deferred action as a temporary remedy for certain young people who came to the United States as children.

In order to qualify for this deferred action, an individual must:

  1. Have arrived in the United States when they were under the age of 16;
  2. Be between the ages of 15- 30 (under 31 as of June 15, 2012);
  3. Resided continuously in the United States for 5 years prior to June 15, 2012 (i.e. June 15, 2007 or earlier);
  4. Be physically present in the United States on June 15, 2012;
  5. Currently be in school, have graduated from high school, have a GED, or be an honorably discharged veteran of the U.S. Coast Guard or the U.S. Armed Forces;
  6. Not have been convicted of a felony, “a significant misdemeanor offense” (this could include DUI and Domestic Violence misdemeanors), or three or more non-significant misdemeanors, and does not pose a threat to National Security.

What else do we know?

  • This is a temporary reprieve from deportation for 2 years, it is not a permanent reprieve and it is not currently a pathway to residency or citizenship. However, the President has indicated that the deferred action status may be renewed every two years. It is important to understand that this 2 year renewal policy may change depending upon the administrative policy of the President at the time that renewal becomes necessary.

What do we not know yet?

  • The Department of Homeland Security has not fully defined every requirement. For instance, we do not know what will be considered “a significant misdemeanor.”
  • We do not know if there will be any assurances as to the deportation of other family members who do not qualify.

What can you do now?

  1. Start ordering your records if you do not have them.
    • Get your birth certificate and get a certified translation if you do not already have one (and your birth certificate is not in English).
    • Order certified copies your high school transcripts for each year you attended high school.
  2. Meet with an experienced and highly qualified Immigration attorney to see if you are eligible for this program and to ask any questions that you may have. Make sure that you explore all of your options.
  3. Make an informed decision about whether you want to apply. Depending upon your circumstances, you may or may not want to apply for deferred action. Therefore, it is important that you carefully consider all of the factors involved before making a decision as to whether you want to apply.

The Immigration Service has said there will be no appeal of a denied case, so if you apply, you want to make sure that you get it right the first time!

Contact our Board Certified Immigration Attorney

If you believe that you, or someone that you care about, may qualify for this deferred action policy, please call us during office hours at (407) 674-6968. You may also call us at 813-400-0055 to make an appointment at our Tampa location. If you have an emergency after office hours please call us at (407) 925-2554 and we will contact you shortly. You may also send us an email at

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Member of the AILA - American Immigration Lawyers AssociationAVVO Top Immigration Attorney Suzanne E. VazquezAVVO Board Certified Immigration Lawyer - Clent's Choice 2012Board Certified Immigration Attorney by The Florida Bar

The Information obtained at this site is not, nor is it intended to be, legal advice. You should consult an attorney for individual advice regarding your own particular case.