“DACA” stands for Deferred Action for certain Childhood Arrivals to the United States. On June 15, 2012, the Secretary of Homeland Security announced that certain people, commonly referred to as “Dreamers,” who came to the United States as children and met several guidelines, could apply for deferred action for a period of two years-subject to renewal. If approved, they would be eligible for work authorization in the form of employment authorization cards, which in turn could often be used to obtain social security cards and drivers licenses or IDs in many states. Deferred action is a use of prosecutorial discretion to defer removal action against an individual for a certain period but does not confer lawful status on an individual.
Since the program was implemented in 2012, more than 825,000 people have been able to apply for DACA and obtain work authorization. With DACA status, many people who had previously lived in fear of deportation even though brough to this country through no fault of their own, now felt comfortable coming out of the shadows and establishing credit, buying homes, applying for better paying jobs, and pursuing advanced degrees in higher education. The program has been an unquestioned success.
Yet the fate of DACA hangs in balance as the Supreme Court is set to decide on whether the Trump Administration had the authority to cancel the program via executive order as it announced on September 05, 2017. Thankfully, due to court challenges, DACA recipients are still permitted to apply for 2-year extensions of their DACA status through a USCIS form I821D application along with a renewal fee of 495.00 and a renewed biometric clearance. But this too could change if the Supreme Court sides with the Trump Administration in its pending decision.
It is estimated that there are close to 24,000 DACA recipients in the State of Arizona, and that there are nearly 55,000 Arizona households with a DACA recipient living among them. DACA holders have given birth to more than 10,000 US citizen children in Arizona. DACA recipients pay over 90 million dollars in state and local taxes in Arizona, have a spending power of nearly 800 million dollars, and own more than 2,600 homes with over 21 million dollars in mortgage payments. Furthermore, it is estimated that DACA recipients account for over 56 million dollars a year in rental payments in Arizona. Should their DACA status be eliminated and their work authorization terminated as a result, the economic and social damage dealt to Arizona and its residents would be catastrophic.
Attorney Darius Amiri and the team of DACA attorneys and legal staff at the Rose Law Group, PC have extensive experience in applying for DACA and representing DACA holders in legal proceedings, whether it be immigration proceedings, applying for green cards, family court, or civil litigation matters. Mr. Amiri began his legal career representing immigrants and their families facing consequences in immigration court for criminal or civil matters and was around when the DACA program was first implemented in 2012. As a result, he is familiar with the process from start to finish and has had the unique opportunity to represent DACA recipients and their families in all types of legal proceedings.