South Bend / Mishawaka, IN – In November 2014 President Barak Obama took bold action to seek immigration reform. Mr. Obama implemented a new program known as the Deferred Action for Parents of Americans and Lawful Permanent Residents (DAPA) and changed guidelines for the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA).   The changes to DAPA would allow, upon application, legal amnesty for undocumented parents who have lived in the U.S. for the last five years and whose children are either U.S. citizens or permanent residents.  The changes to DACA would allow immigrants under age 30 who arrived in the U.S. before age 16 to apply for a deportation deferral.

Due to legal action, these programs have yet to be implemented. Now, the Supreme Court of the United States has agreed to review President Obama’s actions.  Oral arguments are expected to take place in April 2016 with a ruling sometime around June 2016. If the Supreme Court gives their stamp of approval to the program an estimated 4 million undocumented immigrants will qualify for the two programs. Yet, the Obama administration will have only until January 2017 to implement the programs. At that time it will then be up to the next president to decide if DAPA and the changes to DACA should continue. Thus, it remains to be seen if these programs will have any effect on current immigration guidelines.

Because of the legal action the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services is not accepting applications under DAPA or under the new guidelines for DACA. While the changes are still up in the air, individuals who may qualify for the programs should stay tuned for the Supreme Court Ruling as whatever why the Court rules, changes will likely happen very quickly. If you have questions regarding the path to citizenship or residency, I would be happy to provide you with more information regarding DAPA, DACA, and the current immigration policies.

The content of this article is for information purposes only, and neither contains nor should be considered legal advice.