We have compiled some FAQs to help those who are planning to complete the DACA application process for the first time, as well as those who need to renew their application soon. In addition to our tips and instructions, USCIS has recently updated the following webpages, which can be used as a guide when preparing your initial or renewal filing:
DHS is currently prohibited from approving first-time DACA applications due to the ruling from the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Texas. The Court ordered the injunction and partial stay on DACA to be extended, as of October 14, 2022. New DACA requests are currently being accepted by USCIS but not processed.
Yes, USCIS is accepting and processing renewal requests and corresponding requests for employment authorization. Applications for advance parole for already-approved DACA recipients are also still being accepted and processed.
You may file a renewal DACA application as long as you met all of the initial DACA requirements (when you filed and were approved the first time), your DACA did not expire more than one year ago, and the following is true:
Initial applications are not currently being processed, but if and when new requests begin processing again, people who answer “Yes” to the following questions can file:
The following items should be included when filing to renew your DACA status:
Note that failure to use the correct version of the forms and failure to properly sign and date each form will result in USCIS denying your application and mailing it back to you.
If you are filing for the first time, you will need to submit the following:
If you wait too long to file to renew your DACA application, you risk losing work authorization. In order to stay in status and maintain employment authorization, you should file your renewal request between 150 and 120 days before the expiration date on your current Employment Authorization Document.
If you are renewing your application and realize that you are late (i.e., your current DACA status has already expired, you may still submit a renewal application for up to one year, but keep in mind that there may be a lapse in your lawful ability to work. If your DACA status expired more than a year ago, you must file a new (initial) application.
According to the USCIS website, properly filed DACA renewals should be processed within 120 days from the date they are received. This timeline varies, and applications can take more or less time depending on how backed up the processing centers are. Note that some applications may receive an RFE (Request for Evidence) after filing, which can delay the processing time. RFEs should be responded to as quickly as possible to avoid delays. Keep in mind that the timelines may change if new applications are allowed to be processed, as the court-ordered stay and injunction are creating a tremendous backlog.
You can check the status of your DACA application using the USCIS processing time tool. If your application is outside of normal processing time (listed on the chart), you can use the USCIS e-request tools or call the USCIS contact center at 1-800-375-5283 to follow up on your case.
If you have any further questions, the team at Passage Immigration would be happy to help. You can visit our website for more information, or give us a call at (503) 427-8243.
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