What is Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA)?

This is a request or petition for the US Citizenship and Immigration Services to defer removal or deportation proceedings for at least two years against an alien in the United States. Approval of a request for DACA can be the basis for the issuance of an authorization to work.
The DACA may be issued to aliens who are present unlawfully in the US as long as they entered the US during their childhood and before their 16th birthday. They must have been residing continuously in the US since June 15, 2007. They must have entered the US legally and were admitted on a valid non-immigrant visa which has expired by June 15, 2012 or, they entered the US illegally without being inspected or admitted on or before June 15, 2012. They must be under the age of 31 as of June 15, 2012. They must be physically present in the US on June 15, 2012 and at the time that they made the request for deferred action.

They must be currently in school or they have graduated from high school or college or acquired their GED or they have been honorably discharged from the US Armed Forces or Coast Guard. They must not have been convicted of a felony, of a significant misdemeanor or of three misdemeanors and do not pose a threat to the national security or public safety.


The alien applicant for a DACA must provide documentary evidence that they meet the guidelines. These documents must be submitted along with the forms and payment of the processing fees. Four months before the DACA expires, the alien must file a request for a renewal of their DACA and must prove that they were eligible under the guidelines when they first applied.