USCIS Announces DACA Renewal Process

August 15 marks two years since the U.S. government began accepting applications for Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA). DACA authorizes certain undocumented individuals who arrived in this country before the age of 16, and who meet a number of requirements, to live and work legally in the United States.

The first DACA applications that were approved in 2012 will soon begin to expire. To avoid an interruption in the period of deferred action and employment authorization, it is very important that DACA recipients submit renewal applications before their permits expire.

A month ago I gave you preliminary information about the DACA renewal process, but today the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) officially published the instructions for the process.

The DACA re-registration process for eligible individuals begins today, June 5, 2014. USCIS recommends that DACA renewals be submitted 120 to 150 days (four to five months) before the expiration of each individual's current period of deferred action. Renewal requests filed more than 150 days in advance will be rejected by USCIS.

The instructions are for re-enrolling in the program, not for applying for the first time.

In the meantime, the USCIS  will also continue to accept DACA applications from individuals who have never before enrolled in the program.  

DACA Re-registration Process

It is of utmost importance to consult with a licensed and experienced immigration attorney or federally accredited representative before beginning any immigration proceedings.

Remember, people who have not lived continuously in the United States since June 15, 2007 are not eligible for DACA.

Here are the details on how to renew, according to USCIS:
Individuals may file a petition to be considered for DACA renewal if they meet the initial DACA requirements and the following requirements:
  • Have not left the United States without advance permission on or after August 15, 2012.
  • They have resided continuously in the United States since filing their most recent DACA petition which was approved until the present and
  • Have not been convicted of a felony, a misdemeanor, or three or more less serious felonies, or are not otherwise a threat to national security or public safety.

To begin the renewal process, Form I-821D, Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals Consideration, Form I-765, Application for Employment Authorization, and Form I-765 Worksheet must be submitted.

The processing fee is $465. USCIS will re-verify the background of the person applying for DACA renewal.