On August 21, 2020, USCIS issued guidance to its officers to reject all initial DACA applications until USCIS decides to begin accepting applications in the future, accept DACA renewal requests but reject those that are filed more than 150 days prior to expiration of their current DACA status, and grant deferred action for only one year, as opposed to two years.
Clearly each of these policies does not comply with the mandate from the U.S. Supreme Court in Department of Homeland Security (DHS), et al. v. Regents of the University of California, et al. which held that the decision to rescind DACA was arbitrary and capricious. The Court ordered that the previous rescission was unlawful and that it should return to its status in 2017 before the Trump administration attempted to do away with the program.
These policies come after USCIS was ordered by the United States District Court for the District of Maryland to stop implementing or enforcing the recission of DACA in Casa de Maryland v. U.S. Department of Homeland Security. Clearly USCIS’s policy memorandum instructing adjudicators to reject initial DACA applications is implementing the recission of DACA, disregarding the order in that case. If you or someone you know wants to file an initial DACA application, contact Joseph & Hall, P.C. to explore your options with the ever-changing rules.
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