On June 15, 2012, President Obama and the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) announced an exciting new regulation that allows certain young people who entered the United States before age 16 to remain in United States and to obtain certain benefits. Qualifying individuals will be granted “deferred action” and be eligible for a work permit in addition to obtaining social security cards and driver’s licenses. In order to be eligible for deferred action, an individual must prove that he or she:
- Was under 31 years old on June 15, 2012;
- Came to the United States under the age of 16;
- Has continuously resided in the United States for at least five years before June 15, 2012, and was physically present in the United States on June 15, 2012;
- Is currently attending school, has graduated from high school, has obtained a G.E.D. certificate, or is an honorably discharged veteran of the U.S. Armed Forces or Coast Guard;
- Has not been convicted of a felony offense, significant misdemeanor offense, multiple misdemeanor offenses, nor otherwise poses a threat to the community or national security.
There are many individuals who are unauthorized to practice law, who have been dispelling misinformation, accepting payment, and promising to start filing the paperwork for this new regulation which has not yet gone into effect. The regulation will go into effect on August 15, 2012.