FAQs Immigration & Related Matters
The information provided in response to the FAQs listed below is meant only as a guide and should not be considered legal advice. If you have questions related to legal advice, please contact SES for more assistance.
DACA Related Questions
Who qualifies for DACA status?
- Were under the age of 31 as of June 15, 2012;
- Came to the United States before reaching their 16th birthday;
- Have continuously resided in the United States since June 15, 2007, up to the present time;
- Were physically present in the United States on June 15, 2012, and at the time of making their request for consideration of deferred action with USCIS;
- Had no lawful status on June 15, 2012;
- Are currently in school, have graduated or obtained a certificate of completion from high school, have obtained a general education development (GED) certificate, or are an honorably discharged veteran of the Coast Guard or Armed Forces of the United States.
- Have not been convicted of a felony, significant misdemeanor, or three or more other misdemeanors, and do not otherwise pose a threat to national security or public safety.
I am in DACA status. Can I travel by air in the United States?
Yes. As long as DACA remains in effect, you can travel by air on domestic flights. You need to be able to present an identification document, such as a valid and unexpired state's driver's license, state I.D. or foreign passport, meeting the requirements of the Transportation Security Administration (TSA).
Should I carry around documentation of my DACA status while going about my everyday life?
If you are not a U.S. Citizen and an employee of the U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS), including Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE), or an officer from the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) asks to see your immigration papers, you must show them if you have them with you.
If you are over 18, carry your immigration documents with you at all times. If you do not have immigration papers, you have the right to remain silent. You should never lie about your citizenship status or present fake documents. (Source: ACLU Know Your Rights)
I am eligible for DACA status, but never applied. Should I apply now?
You should seek legal advice to determine whether the potential benefits of obtaining DACA status, such as receipt of an Employment Authorization Document (EAD), are worth the risk of exposure in the event DACA status is rescinded by the current presidential administration. At this point no one knows whether a decision will be made to suspend or terminate DACA or how any such action would impact individuals who have already been granted DACA status or have a pending initial DACA application.
The Office of Student Enrichment Services (SES) can help you identify a suitable resource for legal advice about DACA.
I am in DACA status. Should I renew my DACA status before it expires?
Since the USCIS already has the information you provided on your original DACA application, there is much less risk that adverse action against you will result from renewing your DACA status and DACA-based EAD. Moreover, if you fail to renew your DACA status, you will no longer be protected from being placed in removal proceedings or from other enforcement action.
In addition, you will no longer have employment authorization. In view of the serious adverse consequences of not renewing your DACA status, many DACA recipients are continuing to renew their DACA status and their EADs.
You should seek legal advice if you are concerned about renewing your DACA status.
I have DACA status. Can I travel internationally?
DACA recipients cannot travel internationally and return to the United States unless you apply for and are granted advance parole. DACA recipients can apply for advance parole only if international travel will be in furtherance of:
Humanitarian purposes, including travel to obtain medical treatment, attending funeral services for a family member, or visiting an ailing relative;
Educational purposes, such as semester-abroad programs and academic research, or;
Employment purposes such as overseas assignments, interviews, conferences or, training, or meetings with clients overseas.
The potential benefits of obtaining advance parole must be weighed against the risk that while you are outside the United States, the current presidential administration could terminate the DACA program and you could be denied parole back into the U.S. Before applying for or departing the U.S. with advance parole, you should seek legal advice.
Additionally, you should connect with SES to report your travel dates.
Undocumented Related Questions
What is meant by the term "undocumented" as used in these FAQs?
As used in these FAQs, the term “undocumented” means an individual who entered the U.S. without authorization or remained in the U.S. beyond the authorized period of nonimmigrant status and has not been granted lawful permanent residence, asylum, DACA status, or Temporary Protected Status (TPS).
Has the current presidential administration take actions adverse to undocumented individuals?
On January 25, 2017, President Trump issued an Executive Order, entitled “Border Security and Immigration Enforcement Improvements”, and an Executive Order, entitled “Enhancing Public Safety in the Interior of the United States.” On February 20, 2017, the Secretary of the U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS) John Kelly signed Memoranda implementing these Executive Orders.
It is anticipated these Executive Orders and DHS Memoranda will toughen immigration enforcement and could lead to removal proceedings for some undocumented individuals.
I am undocumented. Can I travel by air in the U.S.?
Under the previous presidential administration, many undocumented individuals traveled by air on domestic flights without being subject to immigration enforcement action. However, with the change in administration, there have been reports that Department of Homeland Security (DHS) officers have asked passengers on some domestic flights for identification documents.
Undocumented individuals should consider the increased risk of enforcement action and seek legal advice before traveling by air.
I am undocumented. What should I do if I am questioned or detained by a DHS officer or an FBI officer?
If you are not a U.S. Citizen and an employee of the U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS), including Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE), or an officer from the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) asks to see your immigration papers, you must show them if you have them with you. If you are over 18, carry your immigration documents with you at all times.
If you do not have immigration papers, you have the right to remain silent. You should never lie about your citizenship status or present fake documents. You have the right to ask if you are free to leave. If you are, calmly and silently walk away. If a DHS or FBI officer detains you, you continue to have the right to remain silent and may ask for a lawyer. Do not sign any papers without first speaking to a lawyer. (Source: ACLU Know Your Rights)
You may contact SES for assistance in identifying a suitable resource for legal advice.
I am undocumented. Do I have to permit DHS or other government officers to enter my residence?
Unless DHS or other government officers have a judicial search warrant that has been signed by a judge, you do not have to permit them to enter your residence. You have the right to ask government officers if they have a judicial search warrant and to examine the warrant. Officers can only search the areas and for the items listed on the warrant.
An arrest warrant allows officers to enter the home of the person listed on the warrant if they believe the person is inside. A warrant of removal/deportation (ICE warrant) does not allow officers to enter a home without consent. Even if officers have a warrant, you may remain silent. If officers force their way in, you should not attempt to resist. (Source: ACLU Know Your Rights)
You may contact SES for assistance in identifying a suitable resource for legal advice.
I have been contacted by telephone or email by someone claiming to be from the DHS, including ICE, or claiming to represent other federal agencies (IRS, FBI, U.S. Dept of State, etc.) What should I do?
If you are contacted by telephone or email by someone claiming to be a government employee or someone asking you to provide personal information about you (i.e. your name, citizenship, date or place of birth, address, bank information, credit card information etc.), you should not provide any information. Instead, you should immediately contact Student Enrichment Services to inform SES of the communication you received and seek advice.
I am in DACA status or I am undocumented and have been charged with a crime. What should I do?
Even relatively minor criminal offenses can have serious consequences for your immigration status. If you are arrested or charged with a crime or a serious driving offense like driving while under the influence of alcohol, you should retain a lawyer to represent you in court and obtain legal advice on the possible immigration consequences. SES can help you identify a suitable resource for legal advice.