Deferred Action & Deferred Action Resources

Issues: Immigration

Deferred Action

Deferred action is a determination made by the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) to defer the deportation (“removal”) of an individual, as an act of prosecutorial discretion.

Deferred action does not confer lawful status upon an individual. Under existing regulations, an individual whose case has been deferred is eligible to work legally in the country, provided he or she can demonstrate “an economic necessity for employment.” DHS can terminate or renew deferred action at any time at the agency’s discretion.

On June 15, 2012, the Secretary of Homeland Security announced that certain people who came to the United States as children, commonly known as “DREAMers” or “DREAM-eligible youth,” and meet several key requirements may request consideration of deferred action for a period of two years, subject to renewal, and would then be eligible for work authorization. Individuals who can demonstrate through verifiable documentation that they meet these guidelines will be considered for deferred action. Determinations will be made on a case-by-case basis under the requirements set forth in the Secretary of Homeland Security’s memorandum and guidelines.

Individuals may request consideration of deferred action if they:

  • Were under the age of 31 as of June 15, 2012;
  • Came to the United States before reaching their 16th birthday;
  • Have continuously resided in the United States since June 15, 2007, up to the present time;
  • Were physically present in the United States on June 15, 2012, and at the time of making their request for consideration of deferred action with USCIS;
  • Entered without inspection before June 15, 2012, or their lawful immigration status expired as of June 15, 2012;
  • Are currently in school, have graduated or obtained a certificate of completion from high school, have obtained a general education development (GED) certificate, or are an honorably discharged veteran of the Coast Guard or Armed Forces of the United States; and
  • Have not been convicted of a felony, significant misdemeanor, three or more other misdemeanors, and do not otherwise pose a threat to national security or public safety

Related Press Release:
Capps Announces Applications for DREAM Act Deferred Status Now Being Accepted

Deferred Action Resources

We Own the Dream / Ùnete al Sueño (non-profit)
We Own the Dream has a Video and Mock Self-Screening to help applicants prepare to apply for deferred action.

U.S. Citizenship & Immigration Services (USCIS) – DHS

USCIS developed a web resource center to provide the most up to date information, including the following helpful forms, instructions and tutorials.

Click on each hyperlink for more information:

Help With Applying

Executive Office of Immigration Review – DOJ

Avoid Scams

Beware of Scam Artists

Many people offer help with immigration services. Unfortunately, not all are authorized to do so. While many of these unauthorized practitioners mean well, too many of them are out to rip people off. This is against the law and may be considered an immigration services scam. USCIS has multiple resources available to help combat immigration services scams, equipping you and your constituents with the knowledge and tools needed to detect and protect from dishonest practices. Some of the resources available