The immigration status of dreamers in New Jersey and around the country is once again in doubt. In early October, a federal appeals court ruled the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program could continue temporarily after a federal appeals court ruled the policy unlawful. What does this mean for young undocumented immigrants?
DACA program can continue for now
In 2021, a federal district court judge ruled that the DACA program was unlawful because it was not created by a formal agency rulemaking process requiring public notice and comments. The same judge ruled that this immigration program can temporarily continue for those who already have DACA status. However, no new applicants can enter the program.
This past August, the Biden administration released the final version of its attempt to codify DACA into law to protect the program and its recipients from continued legal threats. The judge ordered a review of the Biden administration’s revisions to the policy but did not specify a date for a new hearing. The issue returns to the district court judge who issued the original ruling. The Biden administration revisions are set to take place on Oct. 31.
Does this ruling affect my status?
If you are already part of the DACA program, your status will remain the same, meaning that you cannot be threatened with removal and deportation from the United States. The rule set to go into effect at the end of October is not radically different from the original 2012 DACA program, as it does not expand the number of eligible people or address processing delays or frequency of renewals.
Until such time that the U.S. government addresses these issues and makes DACA permanent, your immigration status will remain in limbo. Continue to follow all program rules, so you don’t jeopardize your right to stay here.