The Trump Administration Announcement to End DACA

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On September 5, 2017, the Trump Administration announced the end of the program known as Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals or DACA.  Since 2012, DACA granted nearly 800,000 eligible noncitizens (including about 18,000 people in Washington State) temporary protection from deportation; employment authorization; and permission to participate in the Social Security program.  The people eligible for DACA were individuals who were brought to the United States as children.

As a result of yesterday’s announcement, DACA recipients will began losing their status on March 5, 2018.  According to the United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS), the USCIS will adjudicate, on an individual, case-by-case basis:

  • Properly filed pending DACA initial requests and associated applications for employment authorization documents (EADs) that have been accepted as of September 5, 2017; and
  • Properly filed pending DACA renewal requests and associated applications for EADs from current beneficiaries that have been accepted as of September 5, 2017 and from current beneficiaries whose benefits will expire between September 5, 2017 and March 5, 2018 that have been accepted as of October 5, 2017. In order words, DACA issuance and work permits that expire between now and March 8, 2018 must be submitted for renewal by October 5, 2017.

Individuals who currently benefit from DACA will be allowed to retain both their deferment and their EADs until those benefits expire.  An individual’s expiration date can be found on the I-795 Approval Notice and at the bottom of the individual’s EADs.  In addition, the USCIS will no longer grant DACA recipients permission to travel abroad through advance parole.

Yesterday’s announcement was the result of pressure from 10 state attorneys general that threatened to challenge DACA.  The six-month window from today until March 5, 2018 will give Congress some time to act before any DACA recipients lose their ability to work, study, and live in the United States.  Today, a complaint was filed on behalf of 15 states (including Washington State) and the District of Columbia challenging the President’s decision to end DACA.  Other legal actions are expected in the upcoming months.

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