The months between now and June 2020 are a critical time period for DACA recipients to ensure their protections can continue.
Earlier this year, the U.S. Supreme Court announced that it will hear the case on DACA to determine the future of the program. A decision will come sometime January - June 2020.
Despite multiple lower courts ruling in support of DACA, there is no way of predicting the Supreme Court outcome nor what it will mean for DACA recipients’ ability to renew their protections moving forward. According to the Center for American Progress, almost 310,000 individuals’ DACA protections are set to expire in 2020.
Therefore, if you’re one of the 299,000 DACA recipients with expiration in 2020 that have not yet applied for renewal, it may be in your best interest to begin the renewal process today to ensure your application gets reviewed before the Supreme Court Decision.
Who Can Renew?
Did not depart the United States on or after Aug. 15, 2012, without advance parole;
Have continuously resided in the United States since you submitted your most recent DACA request that was approved; and
Have not been convicted of a felony, a significant misdemeanor, or three or more misdemeanors, and do not otherwise pose a threat to national security or public safety.
When Should You Renew? ASAP.
USCIS guidance recommends that DACA recipients submit renewal applications 120 to 150 days (four to five months) before protections expire.
However, even if your expiration date is after June 2020, advocacy groups like the National Immigration Law Center are encouraging DACA recipients to meet with an immigration attorney to discuss whether it makes sense to renew before the recommended 120- to 150-day window.
The Center for American Progress states:
“Renewing now could be advantageous if the oral arguments or lead-up to a decision were to result in more DACA renewals than expected and thus increase the application backlog. Anyone that applies and is approved in the near future, even if they were to cut short their current DACA, would see their protections extend into 2021, potentially under a new administration with a different stance on immigration.
That said, there is no way to predict how the Supreme Court will rule, or what happens to the pending application queue should the court rule in favor of the Trump administration. DACA recipients and their families must seriously consider all of these aspects.”