When can I apply for deferred action for young immigrants?

The new policy on deferred action for certain young immigrants is attracting a lot of attention from immigrants in Virginia and DC. Many young immigrants who meet the basic qualifications for deferred action are eagerly looking forward to submitting their applications so that they will be eligible to obtain work authorization cards, driver’s licenses and may have better options for going to college. So when can you apply for deferred action?

Applications for Deferred Action Will Not Be Available Until August 15, 2012

Although the initial announcement about deferred action was done on June 15, 2012, applications are not currently available. We don’t even know what the application form will look like.

What we do know is that you won’t be able to apply for deferred action until at least August 15, 2012. As discussed below, you can start collecting information and documents to get ready for the application process, but you cannot submit your application now. If anyone tells you that they can submit your application for you now, they are not telling you the truth. The USCIS website on deferred action will let you know when you can submit your application and you will be able to get all of the application forms for free from USCIS. While there may be an application fee that you need to pay to the government, you will be able to get copies of the forms for free.

What can I do now to prepare for submitting my deferred action application?

Although you can’t submit an application yet, you can:

  • Determine if you meet the requirements for deferred action.
  • Determine if you have the documents needed to prove that you qualify for deferred action.
  • Obtain any additional documents you need to prove that you qualify for deferred action.
  • Decide if the benefits outweigh the risks of applying for deferred action for your situation.
  • If you live in DC, discuss your situation with a good DC deferred action immigration lawyer so that you understand all of your immigration options, including deferred action. A good immigration lawyer can also: (1) help you determine if you qualify, (2) confirm whether you have the necessary proof that you qualify, and (3) prepare and submit your application.

How long will it take for my deferred action application to be approved? When will I be able to get a work card?

At this point, no one knows how long it will take for decisions to be made on application. The best thing that you can do to make sure that the process goes as quickly as possible is to make sure that you can include strong evidence that you qualify for deferred action with your application. Having to resubmit your application because you didn’t include the proper documents or having to submit additional evidence later on will only slow the process down.

About Kimberley Schaefer

Kimberley Schaefer is an immigration lawyer with client meeting locations in Fairfax, Virginia, Reston, Virginia and Washington DC. She helps future Americans become citizens by assisting them with immigrant visas, fiance visas, adjustment of status and green card applications, applying for immigration waivers, fighting deportation and applying for asylum. To contact her, you can call (703) 424-2979 or send Kimberley an email now.

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