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Eligibility

 

To be eligible for Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA), you must meet the following requirements:

 

  • You were under the age of 31 as of June 15, 2012;
  • You came to the United States before reaching your 16th birthday;
  • You have continuously resided in the United States since June 15, 2007, up to the present time;
  • You 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;
  • You entered without inspection before June 15, 2012, or your lawful immigration status expired as of June 15, 2012;
  • You are currently in school, have graduated or obtained a certificate of completion from high school, have obtained a general education development (GED) or TASC certificate, or are an honorably discharged veteran of the Coast Guard or Armed Forces of the United States; and
  • You 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.

 

For help determining whether you are eligible for DACA, the nonprofit organization Own the Dream has created an easy-to-use self-screening tool. Click on the button below to use the self-screening tool, or download Own the Dream’s Pocket DACA app for your mobile device from the Apple iTunes App Store or the Google Play app store.

You can also see the guidelines in pictures on the USCIS website.

 

What if I don’t meet the education requirement?

There is an education requirement to qualify for DACA but this should NOT stop you from applying.

You can enroll in one of many low-cost adult education programs available to help you meet this requirement if you are not currently in school, have not graduated or obtained a certificate of completion from high school, or have not obtained a high school equivalency (HSE) certificate or general education development (GED) (now known as the Test Assessing Secondary Completion (TASC)). Click here for a list of low-cost adult education programs in New York City.

If you are an honorably discharged veteran of the Coast Guard or the Armed Forces of the United States, this will also meet the education requirement.

How do I apply?

Once you are determined to be eligible, you will need to do the following:

  1. Collect documents (e.g., school records, medical records, financial records, employment records, military records) as evidence that you meet the guidelines. Click here to learn more about collecting the required documents.
  2. Download and print the forms for deferred action and work authorization from the USCIS website: Form I-821D, Form I-765, and Form I-765WS.
  3. Complete the forms and mail them along with the $465 fee.

    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.

  4. Schedule a biometrics services appointment at your local USCIS Application Support Center.
  5. Check the status of your request online.

For a list of FREE legal service providers who can help you complete these steps, click here.

Forms and Instructions:
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.

Instructions for Form 1-821D: Consideration for Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals

Form 1-821D: Consideration for Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals

Instructions for Form 1-765: Application for Employment Authorization

Form 1-765: Application for Employment Authorization

Form 1-765WS: Worksheet

Fee Exemption Guidance