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About Deferred Action

On June 15th, the Obama Administration announced a deferred action process for certain undocumented young people living in the United States. Beginning August 15th, eligible individuals will be able to apply. The City of New York aims to provide information and access to those who are interested in applying.

NYC Mayor's Office Press Release (8/15/2012)

What is deferred action for childhood arrivals?

Young people who are granted deferred action are able to remain in the United States and apply for working papers for up to two years. Deferred action is not legal status, and it is not a path to legalization (e.g., green card or citizenship).

Who is eligible to apply?

You may request consideration of deferred action for childhood arrivals if you:

  1. Were under the age of 31 as of June 15, 2012;
  2. Came to the United States before reaching your 16th birthday;
  3. Have continuously resided in the United States since June 15, 2007, up to the present time;
  4. Were physically present in the United States on June 15, 2012, and at the time of making your request for consideration of deferred action with USCIS;
  5. Entered without inspection before June 15, 2012, or your lawful immigration status expired as of June 15, 2012;
  6. 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
  7. 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.

View a picture representation of these guidelines, via USCIS

How do I apply for deferred action for childhood arrivals?

If you believe you are eligible for deferred action, you should take the following steps:

  1. Collect documents (e.g., school records, medical records, financial records, employment records, military records) as evidence that you meet the guidelines.
  2. Visit USCIS’s website to download and print the forms for deferred action and work authorization (www.uscis.gov/childhoodarrivals)
  3. Complete the forms and mail the completed forms to USCIS with the necessary fees (at this time, USCIS has stated that fees will be $465 in total for deferred action and work authorization). NOTE: The City of New York strongly recommends that applicants get help from qualified immigration attorneys and BIA-accredited representatives before submitting applications to the federal government.
  4. Visit your local USCIS Application Support Center for a scheduled biometrics services appointment.
  5. Check the status of your request online.

View a picture representation of these guidelines via USCIS

To request consideration of deferred action for childhood arrivals from USCIS, you must submit three forms: Form I-821D, Form I-765, and Form I-765WS.

If you fail to submit a completed Form I-765 (along with the accompanying filing fees for that form, totaling $465), USCIS will not consider your request for deferred action.

Please read the form instructions to ensure that you submit all the required documentation to support your request. All three forms and instructions are available below and on USCIS.gov.

Información en Español 

Forms:
Form I-821D, Consideration of Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals
Form I-765, Application for Employment Authorization
Form I-765WS, Worksheet

Instructions:
Form I-821D, Consideration of Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals Instructions
Form I-765, Application for Employment Authorization Instructions
Fee Exemption Guidance 

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