What is DAPA and What are the Requirements?

On November 20, 2014 President Obama gave a speech in which he wanted to extend the DACA program and also provide relief, on a temporary basis, for parents of either US citizen children or permanent resident children. Unfortunately, that program is currently suspended because of a law suit that was filed in Texas, saying that basically President Obama did not have the authorization to expand DACA. We don’t know when that law suit is going to be resolved but I anticipate that President Obama will win this law suit.

What should you do in the interim?  I think it’s very important that individuals continue to obtain or gather documents showing that you were in the United States, as of January 1, 2010. President Obama is going to make it eligible for parents of US citizens, or permanent residents, to obtain work authorization if they can show that they were in the United States as of January 1st, 2010. Please gather that information; rent receipts, bank accounts, tickets, anything that shows that you were actually in the United States.

What DAPA has also done is expanded the DACA. Where previously you were limited to being in the United States as of June 15th, 2007, now the expansion will allow those individuals who were brought to the United States as of January 1st, 2010, were under 16 years of age, and are pursuing, or have graduated, a high school diploma class. That part is currently suspended as well.

Lastly what DAPA expanded was the 601 provisional waiver. That provisional waiver is if you’re filing for a spouse and she or he is here undocumented. What that allows, instead of being only USEs filing for the provisional waiver here in the United States before having to go back to their home country for the visa, legal permanent residents are now eligible to do that as well for their spouses. It cuts the anxiety of permanent residence. Spouses or other family members that are eligible for the waiver, they can remain here until the waiver is approved.

Regulations for that program has not been disseminated yet, so we’re in a flux if permanent residents can file for the waiver at this point. In any event, gather the information showing you’ve been in the United States since January 1st, 2010. Contact an experienced immigration attorney to discuss your case in greater detail.

John Sesini is an immigration attorney with offices in Green Bay and Milwaukee Wisconsin. Contact an experienced immigration attorney and get an initial consultation. 

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