Deferred Action Resources


Here are fact sheets and links concerning "deferred action" -- temporary relief from deportation for young undocumented immigrants -- announced by the Obama Administration on June 15. The application process -- formally called Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals -- began on August 15, 2012.

We encourage anyone who is considering an application for deferred action to carefully review the eligibility criteria and to consult with credible advocacy and legal groups before applying.

Read NNIRR's comment on the deferred action announcement here.

8.30.13 Update from CLINIC: USCIS Releases New DACA Application Form and Instructions

8.27.13 From CLINIC: Common Questions on DACA

10.4.12 New York Times: Undocumented Life Is a Hurdle as Immigrants Seek a Reprieve

9.14.12 Updated Frequently Asked Questions at the USCIS website, click here.

8.28.12 News update: DACA eligible immigrants will be denied access to federal health care programs such as Medicaid. Read the letter from the Dept. of Health and Human Services here.


From the USCIS website:

Over the past three years, this Administration has undertaken an unprecedented effort to transform the immigration enforcement system into one that focuses on public safety, border security and the integrity of the immigration system. As the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) continues to focus its enforcement resources on the removal of individuals who pose a danger to national security or a risk to public safety, including individuals convicted of crimes with particular emphasis on violent criminals, felons, and repeat offenders, DHS will exercise prosecutorial discretion as appropriate to ensure that enforcement resources are not expended on low priority cases, such as individuals who came to the United States as children and meet other key guidelines.  Individuals who demonstrate that they meet the guidelines below may request consideration of deferred action for childhood arrivals for a period of two years, subject to renewal, and may be eligible for employment authorization.

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.

Individuals may begin to request consideration of deferred action for childhood arrivals on August 15, 2012.  Please do not file before August 15.  If you file early, your request will be rejected.  Individuals can call USCIS at 1-800-375-5283 with questions or to request more information on the deferred action for childhood arrivals process or visit



Obama's "DREAM Act" Directive on Deferred Action Factsheet from the Asian American Legal Defense and Education Fund. Click here to download fact sheets in Chinese, Korean, Bengali and Urdu.

Frequently Asked Questions: Obama Administration's Relief Process for Eligible Undocumented Youth from the National Immigration Law Center and the United We Dream Network. (Click here for English version) (Click here for Spanish version)

Administrative Relief for Undocumented Youth from the Asian Pacific American Legal Center.

Document Checklist, Deferred Action for DREAMers from the New York Immigration Coalition.

An Alert - Important Warning for People Interested in Applying for the Deferred Action Program Announced by President Obama, from the National Immigration Project of the National Lawyers Guild and the National Immigrant Youth Alliance.

Information Sheet: Deferred Action Policy for DREAMers from the Immigrant Legal Resource Center.

Understanding the Criminal Bars to the Deferred Action Policy for DREAM Act-Eligible Individuals from the Immigrant Legal Resource Center.

USCIS Chart on Consideration for Deferred Action. Government graphic chart on eligibility.



Own the Dream website brings together resources from United We Dream and partner groups to facilitate applications. Look here for information and events to assist potential applicants.

United We Dream website includes background information, fact sheets and warnings on lawyers and notarios.

National Immigration Project of the National Lawyers Guild Community Resource page also has more information on a range of immigration enforcement issues.

USCIS - the government website for "Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals" has been updated in anticipation of the August 15 start date of the program. Please go here for updates, guidelines and application forms.

San Diego Dreamer Assistance: Information, forums, workshops, including eligibility assessments. Go to  Hosted by the San Diego Immigrant Rights Consortium.

Centro Legal de la Raza (Oakland) -- Centro Legal will hold weekly clinics for applicants throughout the months of September and October. Eligible applicants will receive representation for Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals applications. Before accepting any case for representation, our attorneys will consult individually with each applicant to determine eligibility.  Please call Centro legal at (510) 437-1554 ext. 114 to schedule an appointment or obtain more information about their services.