1. The President is ending DACA, what do I do now?
On September 5, 2017, the Trump Administration set an arbitrary deadline to disenfranchise more than 800,000 young people, declaring the end of the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program in six months. The decision to target some of America’s most talented, diverse, and successful immigrants is morally reprehensible. Immigration Solutions LLC remains committee to assisting the immigrant population. Please call us at 617-536-0584 to assess how this development affects your status
In addition to recognizing the simple fact that America is the only country many DACA recipients have ever known, DACA allowed young immigrants the opportunity to thrive. And, as is always the case, when immigrants succeed so does all of America.
Many of you have already contacted Immigration Solutions LLC to ask “what do I do now?” Below, you will find our frequently asked DACA questions. Furthermore, it is important to note that many of you might be eligible for other immigration benefits thus it is paramount to call our experienced immigration attorneys as soon as possible.
Furthermore, there might be hope for the future because Congress is deciding whether to pass the DREAM Act, a bipartisan bill that would provide DACA recipients and other similarly situated young people a pathway to citizenship.
2. When will my work authorization expire?
If you currently have DACA, your work authorization will be valid until the expiration date listed on your work authorization document. If your work authorization expires before March 5, 2018, you may apply to renew it for two more years as long as you do so by October 5, 2017.
3. Can I apply for DACA for the first time within the next six months?
No. The Trump Administration will not grant any new DACA applications.
4. I provided the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services with my address when I applied for DACA. How likely is it that ICE agents are going to come to my home?
This is a hard question to answer. While the President has indicated that individuals who had DACA will not be a priority for deportation, his general emphasis on deportations should be taken seriously. In the past for programs similar to DACA, U.S. Citizenship & Immigration Services (USCIS) did not share information with Immigration Customs Enforcement (ICE).
5. What do I do if immigration agents or officers come to my home?
If Immigration agents come to your home and ask you if they can enter it, tell them “no.” Make sure your family, friends, loved ones, and anyone else living with you or visiting you also know not to open the door for ICE.
No one can enter your home without permission unless they have a search warrant or an arrest warrant signed by a judge.
If an officer informs you that they have a warrant, ask them to slip it under your door. Read it carefully. Immigration officers often have papers that look very official but are not judicial warrants. Please also note that immigration agents frequently come to a person’s home very early in the morning and claim to be the police. If someone says that they are a police officer, ask to see their badge. Look closely at the badge for the word “police,” as many immigration officers also have badges. If the officers cannot show you a police badge, they may be immigration officers. Regardless of which agency the officer works for, no one can enter your home without permission unless they have a search warrant or an arrest warrant signed by a judge.
6. How do I stay safe in public?
Proving your identity is important for a lot of reasons in the United States. If possible, avoid carrying a passport or other papers that indicate that you are not in valid immigration status. Some states and cities issue local IDs without reference to a person’s immigration status.
If someone approaches you claiming to be an immigration agent, respectfully ask to see his/her badge. Read it carefully. If they are an ICE agent and you do not have permission to be in the U.S., you always have the right to remain silent. You can also ask to speak to a lawyer before answering any questions.
You always have the right to remain silent. It is better to remain silent than to be dishonest with immigration agents.
If an immigration agent pats you down and searches you, remember that they are generally not allowed to look in your wallet or to read your papers. A search of a person is generally restricted to looking for weapons or of possession of something illegal. You do not have to consent to any other kind of search.
Do not sign any document you do not understand. Ask to speak with a lawyer, and for a hearing in immigration court before signing away any of your rights.
7. What do I do if immigration agents stop me in my car?
If you have a valid driver’s license, you may show it to an immigration officer. If you do not, you should ask whether you are under arrest. If you are not, ask if you are free to go. Remember, you can always remain silent. You can also ask to speak to an attorney before you answer any questions. If officers ask if they can search your car or look in your trunk, you have the right to say “no.” Note, however, that if the police have “probable cause” to believe that you are involved in criminal activity they may search your car anyway.
8. Is it safe for me to travel abroad? What about advanced parole?
If you are not documented in the United States, you should not travel internationally. If you do, it is very likely that you will be prevented from re-entering the United States. It is also likely that any pending immigration applications you have will be deemed abandoned by the U.S.C.I.S.
Some individuals with pending applications may be eligible for advance parole. Before you apply for or use advance parole, please contact Immigration Solutions LLC. Advance parole is not a guarantee that you will be allowed to re-enter the U.S. Under the Trump Administration, we recommend that you avoid travel.
If you have ever been arrested for a crime, convicted of a crime, or even accused of a crime, you should not travel internationally. If you find that you must travel contact Immigration Solutions LLC to assess whether you are eligible for travel.
9. Is it safe for me to travel domestically?
If you are undocumented, or if you are waiting on a pending immigration application, you should avoid domestic air, train, or bus travel.
Please note that almost all domestic airports are also international airports. Therefore, immigration agents are very likely to be present at almost every airport. Similarly, there are many roads and highways near the borders of the U.S. where immigration agents set up checkpoints. And, finally, certain train and bus lines are regularly boarded and searched by ICE agents. Long distance travel, or travel near the border, is strongly discouraged.
10. Are U.S. territories such as the U.S. Virgin Islands or Puerto Rico considered domestic or international travel?
While all U.S. territories are indisputably part of the United States, ICE has begun to police them as though they were foreign jurisdictions.