Deferred action process which will help certain undocumented immigrants to remain in the United States, temporarily, has been implemented by the administration and the USCIS is accepting applications from such eligible applicants. Form I-821D is the USCIS form that must be completed and filed by an undocumented immigrant who seeks to receive deferred action. A lot of information has been made available, related to the deferred action process. But many people are found to be unaware of the deferred action process and its benefits.
Undocumented immigrants in the United States, believe that the deferred action process is similar to the DREAM Act. But the deferred action process is a kind of prosecutorial discretion which will only postpone the deportation of eligible immigrants but will not allow them to reside permanently in the United States in some legal status. Moreover, the recipients of deferred action may never become permanent residents or US citizens, unless the DREAM Act is passed. DREAM Act is the one which will allow eligible undocumented immigrants to obtain legal status in the United States. By granting deferred action, the presence of an undocumented immigrant in the United States may not be referred as unlawful but that does not mean that the person is granted lawful status in the United States. Similarly, the deferred action process that has been implemented by the administration is not “Amnesty”.
Foreign nationals who entered the United States as young children, without inspection may file a petition to request deferred action. People who got into the United States legally, but now are in the United States as undocumented immigrants may also request deferred action. In order to receive deferred action, an undocumented immigrant in the United States must satisfy certain key criteria. This process will allow the undocumented immigrants who receive deferred action, to work lawfully in the United States for two years. There is an option to renew deferred action and at the end of the two-year period, applications to renew deferred action and employment authorization may be filed.
F-1, M-1, or J-1 international students and exchange visitors are not eligible to request deferred action. So far, the administration has not announced a deadline before which the eligible undocumented immigrants must file a petition to request deferred action. But it is wise to collect the required supporting documents and file an application requesting deferred action, as soon as possible, if you believe that you are eligible to receive deferred action. This process will hence, protect eligible undocumented immigrants from deportation and will allow them to study and work in the United States, temporarily, for two years.