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Latest DACA Updates: Federal Judge Prohibits Approval of New DACA Requests


Latest DACA Updates: Federal Judge Prohibits Approval of New DACA Requests

On July 16, 2021, a federal district court judge in Texas, Judge Andrew Hanen, ruled that DACA is illegal, finding that it exceeds the power that Congress has delegated to the executive branch. Judge Hanen stated that there were a number of substantive flaws with the program, and that it violated the Administrative Procedure Act (APA) when the Department of Homeland Security did not go through a process called “notice and comment rulemaking” when it first instituted the program in 2012.

In response to Judge Hanen’s decision, the White House announced that it intends to appeal Judge Hanen’s decision, and that DHS will issue a proposed rule regarding DACA in the near future.

Even though Judge Hanen found the DACA program to be unlawful, the ruling allows individuals currently with DACA to maintain these protections and seek renewals while this latest court decision goes through the appeals process.

What does this mean for my case?

Individuals Currently With DACA

  • If you currently have DACA, it is still valid.
  • If you have a DACA renewal application pending, it will still be processed.
  • If your current DACA protections are expiring you can continue to submit an application and renew your DACA.

First-Time DACA Applicants

  • Judge Hanen ruled that USCIS can no longer grant DACA to individuals requesting it for the first time.
  • If you have a first-time DACA application pending, there is an indefinite freeze on the application. It is expected that USCIS will issue guidance on this issue in the near future.
  • If you are eligible to file for DACA but have never applied, USCIS can accept your application, but it is prohibited from granting approvals.

For a detailed discussion of Frequently Asked Questions, check out this article here by United We Dream.

If you have questions on what this ruling means for your DACA case, contact our office today for a consultation with one of our immigration attorneys.

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