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Found 51 results

  1. I was just wondering if anyone here knew, or themselves, took advantage of parole in place? How legitimate is this offer and did your parents receive the promised help? Any more information on this topic would be appreciated, especially first hand experiences
  2. Ok, hope everyone is having a lovely day. So much to my chagrin, after I submitted the rest of the evidence requested in my case, I got in trouble and was arrested for a misdemeanor. I had no prior record to that. I received a letter from immigration requesting to know more. I submitted my charges & etc. After that they then asked me to send in evidence of the outcome of the case. My lawyer says I can plead down to disturbing the peace. I've read a bit about how that affects my case since it's a "non-significant misdemeanor." I unfortunately do not have enough money for an immigration lawyer at the moment as my criminal lawyer has cost me a lot. Does anyone have any experience with that or feedback? Thanks in advance, any information would be wonderful.
  3. Hi I was wondering how many of you have been approved for deferred action having shoplifting on your record and to what degree. I pled guilty to shoplifting in 2011. It was the lowest degree, petit larceny I believe in my state. How have your cases been. Will I get denied?
  4. Hi I was wondering how many of you have been approved for deferred action having shoplifting on your record and to what degree. I pled guilty to shoplifting in 2011. It was the lowest degree, petit larceny I believe in my state. How have your cases been. Will I get denied?
  5. I applied September of 2012. They asked for a request for evidence, and I replied around November/December of 2012. It is now July 2014!!!! It will be 2 years in a couple of months.. very frustrated with this process, I have a lawyer actively notifying the Nebraska center every 30 days, I have involved a congressman's office.. All they manage to reply is that it is in the background process.. I'm just tired of waiting, I want closure to this case.. bad or good.. I have no criminal history whatsoever, I should have been an incredibly easy application.. whatever happened, I don't know.. I have searched to see if anyone out there is in the same boat.. so far i haven't really found anyone else. If anyone out there has a similar story I would love to hear it, maybe it will give me a glimmer of hope. Thanks
  6. Freedom Summer 2014 Project

    Hello guys, My name is Francisco Rayado and I am a recipient and beneficiary of the Deferred Action. I work for Mi Familia Vota, a non-profit organization that was started in 2004 and that has been in the immigration reform fight since 2006. We have a project coming up this summer and we are doing it to commemorate the Civil Rights Act of 1964. For those of you that don't know or simply can't recall from High School Social Studies, I suggest watching a 15 minute youtube clip which I can link below. Long story short, in 1964 minorities, but mostly the black population was being affected and their right to vote was being suppressed. Now in present days, we see the similarities but it is now the Latino community that is being affected the most. The fact that we hardly vote and are intimidated by the whole aspect of going to the polls has led to cities such as Phoenix, AZ being terrorized by Sheriff Joe and Jan Brewer making our life miserable by not issuing driver's licenses to us. My point is that we have to vote and for those that can't, like "me." We can sure as hell influence anyone around us to do so. From any girlfriends/ boyfriend, to friends or even complete strangers. The Freedom Summer Project 2014 is a bus tour set for July 2014 where we will travel to different cities within Arizona and engage the community by registering them to vote, in turn, you get an amazing experience where you can listen to different people's stories and a chance for you to develop as a leader in your community. Besides, who doesn't want to travel for 10 days right? As a resident of Arizona, I am tired of seeing families being torn apart, I am tired of worrying about wether my parents will come home from work or not, I am tired of absurd bills becoming laws, and I am tired of not being able to proceed my education because of different roadblocks I encounter. I'm sure all of you can empathize with me and I know for sure that each and everyone of you has their own unique story. That is why I'm reaching out to YOU my fellow Arizona residents. Can you guys join me in this historic process, because believe it or not, that is what we're doing. And for those that are eager to participate but live in other states, Mi Familia Vota is nation wide and has offices established in Callifornia, Nevada, Colorado, Texas, and Florida. Here I leave my contact info for anyone interested in participating in Arizona. Thanks. Francisco Rayado (602)516-9459 [email protected]
  7. So, FIU is the only school in the entire state to allow students with deferred action to pay in state tuition.
  8. Hello all - I wanted to ask you a couple of questions, and am hoping for some feedback (please keep in mind that this only applies to individuals that meet USCIS requirements for Deferred Action): Do you qualify for DACA, but have not applied due to financial circumstances? Do you know anyone that has not applied to DACA due to the above mentioned circumstances? The reason for these questions is basically to gauge interest in any form of financial aid to assist with DACA filing expenses. This only applies to individuals that have not applied to DACA, and also that have graduated High School and would like to pursue/are pursuing higher education. Your answers are greatly appreciated. Regards, Santiago
  9. Well, we are at it again... The New York Times reported that the debate to overhaul the broken immigration system is being overshadowed by the debate of potential military intervention in Syria, in addition to debates about the Gov's Budget and its borrowing limits (debt ceiling). Since the Syrian intervention and debt ceiling/budget talks have gained popularity and are also being actively discussed in media outlets, the push for immigration reform has lost some of its lime light, but not its momentum. Even though House Republicans say that Immigration Reform has been pushed to the bottom of the list of priorities, reform advocates still plan to mobilize en masse during the fall to pressure the House to pass a comprehensive bill. During the month of October alone, it is expected that there will be rallies in about 40 cities, with a march/rally on DC on October 8th. Please click here to read the original article...
  10. Hello, my name is Fernando. I was brought to united states illegally by my mother at 6 months from birth, she had no other choice but to bring me to the U.S after my father had abandoned us and were left alone with berly any food to last us. My whole family had moved to the u.s, so she had no one to rely on back in mexico. We had lived in California till i was at the age of 5 but soon moved out to Arizona after my step father had gone to prison for drug trafficing. Ive been living in phoenix since then. Going to school here and getting an education. Ive been through ups and downs with the state due to its immigration problems. For example the sb1070. the right for police men to ask for documention was a real hassle. it did cause fear in alot of us undocumented people. Ive had friends get deported in raids from Joe Arapio or just stopped in one of his usual round ups, and i was one of the lucky few who made it through all that and finish high school and graduated on top of my class. As proud as i was of myself for accomplishing something good in life it wasnt quite satisfying because i didnt have proper documentation to work or let alone get help from the goverment to continue going to school. So i started working in landscaping with one of my old friends from high school. Let me tell you its not easy doing that sort of job when its gets to about over 115 degrees here in Arizona. Especially the amount of pay we were getting wasnt even worth it but didnt have no other choice. Everyday i would wake up, thinking is this what all my hard work has lead me to?. I had friends in high school who were going to commuitiy colleges, universities or in the army . and i was stuck working out in the sun everyday. I really thought it was unfair. I did everything right in life. never been arrested, always got good grades and always kept a postive addidute. I truely lost all hope when the dream act didnt pass the second time. I went through a time of depression after that . I didnt feel like doing much but like every dark tunnel theres always a light at the end of it. Last year my daughter was born and it brough out the best in me . I became a father and it was my motive to give my daughter everything i never had. I worked harder and ended up with a better job with a good friend at his store. hes showing me the ropes in buisness . Which i always wanted to go to school for in the first place but couldnt, and finally later that same year the Deferred action was introduced. I was blessed by god because i qualified for it. I am currently waiting for an approval but know in my heart ill get apporved soon. Now its just a waiting game, but know that the wait is worth it because in the end Im going to be able to get the chance to further my studies and go through life without any fear.
  11. If I were to be approved for the deferred action plan, will that have any affect in the future when I marry my fiance and I want to apply for citizenship? I've heared different things from people with legal advice. I myself have a lawyer I am working under but I want to be absolutely sure before I send in the application/ my hard earned money. My future and future kids are far more important than just getting a quick 2 year permit so I need help. Can anyone verify or give me some information on this? Thanks!
  12. Its been a while since sent my application and I'm starting to get nervous as more and more time passes. I have been waiting since Nov 23rd, when i took my biometrics. Does anybody know why some people are getting approved a month after their biometrics while I'm approaching my 4th month without any information? Date Application Sent:October 25,2012 Received Date: October 29, 2012 Date of Acceptance e-mail/text: November 1, 2012 Date of I-797 C Notice of Action: November 1, 2012 Date of Biometrics: November 23, 2012 Date of EAD Approval: Waiting Date of EAD Received: Waiting
  13. WASHINGTON (Reuters) - Republicans in the U.S. House of Representatives on Tuesday challenged President Barack Obama's central goal for immigration reform that would put 11 million undocumented residents on a path to citizenship, adding fresh doubts on whether legislation can be passed this year. During a kick-off hearing, House Judiciary Committee Chairman Bob Goodlatte explored a possible "middle ground" between the current U.S. policy of deporting those who have come to the United States illegally and of placing them on a path to citizenship, as Obama has demanded. The hearing was the panel's first since last November's elections when Hispanic-Americans voted in droves for Obama and his fellow Democrats in Congress. Those election results caused Republicans to rethink their anti-immigration stances, which were highlighted by presidential candidate Mitt Romney's urging that illegal residents should simply "self-deport." A standoff over Democrats' goal of providing citizenship hopes for the immigrants living illegally in the United States could torpedo reform efforts in this Congress. Still, many Republicans expressed concerns about rewarding illegal immigrants with eventual citizenship, which they often decry as an "amnesty." House Majority Leader Eric Cantor, in a speech to the conservative American Enterprise Institute, noted, "While we are a nation that allows anyone to start anew, we are also a nation of laws." Cantor of Virginia is the second-ranking House Republican and has a say in which bills are debated before the full House. At the House Judiciary hearing, Goodlatte, another Virginia Republican, asked, "Are there options to consider between the extremes of mass deportation and pathway to citizenship?" Julian Castro, the Democratic mayor of San Antonio, Texas, who testified before Goodlatte's panel, responded: "I believe, as the president has pointed out ... that a path to citizenship is the best option" for the 11 million, many of whom have lived in the United States for a decade or more. Some Republicans have sketched out more modest steps in dealing with illegal immigrants who live under the threat of deportation. Instead of putting them in line for citizenship, they have suggested a permanent work visa system. But last week, Senator Dick Durbin of Illinois, the second-ranking Senate Democrat, told Reuters legislation could not be enacted unless it contains a path to full citizenship. During Tuesday's House committee hearing, Democratic Representative Zoe Lofgren of California warned: "Partial legalization, as some are suggesting, is a dangerous path and we need only look at France and Germany to see how unwise it is to create a permanent underclass" in the United States. A PIECEMEAL APPROACH Other Republicans in the House Judiciary Committee raised additional ideas that could complicate comprehensive immigration reform this year, or make it impossible. Representative Spencer Bachus, an Alabama Republican, suggested splitting immigration reform into pieces so that the "more toxic and contentious issue" of citizenship for the 11 million was separated from reforms that have more widespread support. Those reforms include efforts to encourage foreigners earning advanced degrees in mathematics, engineering and science at American universities to stay in the United States and work for American companies. Cantor also hinted at a piecemeal approach, rather than the comprehensive action that Obama and his fellow Democrats want. He called for starting with legalization and citizenship for children who were brought illegally into the United States by their parents, an action that Obama last summer approved temporarily. "One of the great founding principles of our country was that children would not be punished for the mistakes of their parents," Cantor said. While Cantor's call marked movement for Republicans, many of whom opposed citizenship for the youths, it also falls well short of Obama's drive for broader legislation. A bipartisan group of senators last week unveiled a comprehensive plan that they hope to translate into legislation in coming weeks. Major holes in their outline included the kind of system that would be created for allowing future visa applicants. Senate Democrats hope to pass a comprehensive bill by mid-year with a large, bipartisan vote that could improve chances for passage of a bill in the Republican-controlled House. But House Republican leaders have not decided on whether they would pursue a major reform bill this year, according to one aide. Goodlatte acknowledged that U.S. immigration laws were badly in need of repair, but he warned against rushing to enact an immigration bill. Congress, he said, "needs to take the time to learn from the past so that our efforts to reform our immigration laws do not repeat the same mistakes." He added that there were many questions about how a "large-scale legalization program would work, what it would cost and how it would prevent illegal immigration in the future." Reformers and minority groups are hoping the legislative effort gets a boost from conservative Representative Trey Gowdy of South Carolina, the new chairman of the House's immigration subcommittee. On Tuesday, Gowdy captured the attention of the crowded House hearing room when he detailed the story of a 12-year-old immigrant from Sierra Leone whose hands were cut off by soldiers with machetes during the civil war in her country. She "tried to run, tried to hide, asked God to let her die," Gowdy said. But, like Cantor, in a reference to those who have crossed into the United States illegally, Gowdy also warned that the federal government must enforce the laws it has on the books. "What we cannot become is a nation where the law is enforced selectively, or not at all," Gowdy said. (Editing by Alistair Bell and Vicki Allen) Source:;_ylt=AnH_QToXm2vnr.alL07bXp0JVux_;_ylu=X3oDMTIyNWRka2MyBG1pdANBVFQgSG9tZSBXaWRnZXRyb24gVGVzdCAxBHBvcwMxMQRzZWMDTWVkaWFBdHRXaWRnZXRyb25Bc3NlbWJseQ--;_ylg=X3oDMTFpNzk0NjhtBGludGwDdXMEbGFuZwNlbi11cwRwc3RhaWQDBHBzdGNhdANob21lBHB0A3NlY3Rpb25z;_ylv=3
  14. WASHINGTON (AP) — The chairman of the House Judiciary Committee said Tuesday the nation's immigration system is "in desperate need of repair" as he opened Congress' first hearing this year on immigration. Whether Congress will be able to agree on how to fix it remained unclear. The session came as President Barack Obama pushes for swift action to pass immigration legislation and as bipartisan Senate negotiators work to craft a bill. But in a sign of the difficulties to come, the Judiciary chairman, Republican Bob Goodlatte of Virginia, cautioned against a "rush to judgment" and said each piece of the issue must be examined in detail. Goodlatte said there are lots of questions about how any large-scale legalization program would work, how much it would cost and how it would prevent illegal immigration in future. Obama supports a pathway to citizenship for 11 million illegal immigrants already in the country, something many Republicans oppose. Goodlatte questioned whether another approach might be possible: "Are there options we should consider between the extremes of mass deportation and a pathway to citizenship for those not lawfully present in the United States?" he asked. His question underscored the discomfort of many majority House Republicans with granting eventual citizenship to illegal immigrants, something conservatives often decry as amnesty. At one point the hearing was interrupted by protesters, apparently young illegal immigrants known as "DREAMers" brought to the country as children, who shouted "undocumented and unafraid!" before being led out. Yet Tuesday's hearing, which focused on fixing the legal immigration system and on enforcement, was notable for the generally measured tone from some Republicans known for strong anti-immigration positions. Several questioned whether there's a way short of citizenship to deal with illegal immigrants, and others on the panel agreed on the need to allow more high-skilled workers to enter the country, a priority for technology companies. "Let's not let the more contentious issues and the idea of comprehensive reform prevent us from passing something," said Rep. Spencer Bachus, R-Ala. It was part of a larger shift by Republicans who have begun to embrace action on immigration reform in the wake of the November elections in which large proportions of Hispanic voters supported Obama, helping him win re-election. Some GOP leaders have concluded that softening their views on immigration is becoming a political necessity. House Majority Leader Eric Cantor, R-Va., delivered a speech Tuesday embracing "an opportunity for legal residence and citizenship for those who were brought to this country as children and who know no other home." It appeared to be a change for Cantor, who voted against DREAM Act legislation to allow a path to citizenship for certain immigrants brought here as youths. Source:;_ylt=AkrcMW5uRVFWlzW4au1NQa4JVux_;_ylu=X3oDMTIydDc2NGNpBG1pdANBVFQgSG9tZSBXaWRnZXRyb24gVGVzdCAxBHBvcwMxMwRzZWMDTWVkaWFBdHRXaWRnZXRyb25Bc3NlbWJseQ--;_ylg=X3oDMTFpNzk0NjhtBGludGwDdXMEbGFuZwNlbi11cwRwc3RhaWQDBHBzdGNhdANob21lBHB0A3NlY3Rpb25z;_ylv=3
  15. (Reuters) - Leading Democratic and Republican senators said on Sunday there were encouraging signs in the push to overhaul U.S. immigration laws - a top priority for President Obama's second term - and they would introduce their plan this week. With Obama set to begin his push for immigration reform with a speech in Las Vegas on Tuesday, a group of three Democratic and three Republican senators have been working for weeks on a plan. One of those senators, Republican John McCain of the border state of Arizona, said on ABC's "This Week" program that the group still had hard work ahead but that he was pleased with the progress and that the principles of a comprehensive plan would be put forth this week. McCain said the plan was much like a 2007 immigration proposal that died during the presidency of George W. Bush. That plan included a path to citizenship for undocumented immigrants, tighter borders, a guest worker program and requirements for employers to verify workers' immigration status. The immigration issue was largely pushed aside during Obama's first term as economic concerns weighed more heavily, but the president, who had overwhelming backing from Hispanic voters in his 2012 re-election, cited it as part of his agenda when sworn in for a second term last week. McCain said the political aspect of immigration reform should sway any Republicans who object to a pathway to citizenship for undocumented immigrants. "We are losing dramatically the Hispanic vote, which we think should be ours, for a variety of reasons, and we've got to understand that," he said. McCain said change also was needed because "we can't go on forever with 11 million people living in this country in the shadows in an illegal status. We cannot forever have children who were born here, who were brought here by their parents when they were small children, to live in the shadows, as well." Democrat Dick Durbin of Illinois, another member of the six-person Senate group, said on "Fox News Sunday" that work remained to be done but that the progress was encouraging. "We are trying work our way through some very difficult issues but we are committed to a comprehensive approach to finally in this country having an immigration law that we can live with," he said. "We have virtually been going for maybe 25 years without a clear statement about immigration policy. That's unacceptable in this nation of immigrants." Senator Robert Menendez, a Democrat from New Jersey who is also a member of the immigration group, said on "This Week" that he was cautiously optimistic because of the bipartisan spirit that has prevailed in the recent reform effort. "I see things that were once off the table for agreement and discussion being on the table with a serious pathway forward," he said. Senator Bob Corker of Tennessee, a Republican who is not a member of the group, said he had spoken with one of its members, who said he was "very optimistic" about reform. Source:
  16. Okay, so I was about to go to sleep right and this popped in my head. So, i decided to ask the question, here it is! You get approved for deferred action, u get EAD card ssn and wat not. Now, what if you ever won the lottery could you se the ssn to claim it?!?! LOL thoughts and answers please!!
  17. WASHINGTON — The Obama administration eased the way Wednesday for illegal immigrants who are immediate relatives of American citizens to apply for permanent residency, a change that could affect as many as 1 million of the estimated 11 million immigrants unlawfully in the U.S. A new rule issued by the Department of Homeland Security aims to reduce the time illegal immigrants are separated from their American families while seeking legal status, immigration officials said. Beginning March 4, when the changes go into effect, illegal immigrants who can demonstrate that time apart from an American spouse, child or parent would create “extreme hardship,” can start the application process for a legal visa without leaving the U.S. Once approved, applicants would be required to leave the U.S. briefly in order to return to their native country and pick up their visa. The change is the latest move by the administration to use its executive powers to revise immigration procedures without Congress passing a law. In August, the Obama administration launched a program to halt the deportation of young people brought to the U.S. unlawfully as children. The new procedures could reduce a family's time apart to one week in some cases, officials said. In recent years a few relatives of U.S. citizens have been killed in foreign countries while waiting for their applications to be resolved. “The law is designed to avoid extreme hardship to U.S. citizens, which is precisely what this rule achieves,” said Alejandro Mayorkas, director of U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services, in a statement. “The change will have a significant impact on American families by greatly reducing the time family members are separated from those they rely upon,” he said. Until now, many immigrants who might seek legal status do not pursue it out of fear they will not receive a "hardship waiver" of strict U.S. immigration laws: An illegal immigrant who has overstayed a visa for more than six months is barred from reentering the U.S. for three years; those who overstay more than a year are barred for 10 years. The new rule allows those relatives to apply for the waiver without first leaving the U.S. Source:,0,2322646.story
  18. Earlier this afternoon, the Obama administration releasedupdated statistics indicating that 53,273 undocumented youths have been granted relief under the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program. As of November 15, U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) had received more than 300,000 requests for deferred action, with most applicants still awaiting the completion of background checks. The figures did not indicate how many beneficiaries have received work permits under the program or whether any requests for deferred action have been denied. At the rate the agency is processing applications, more than 100,000 requests for deferred action appear likely to be granted by the end of the year.
  19. One of my bestfriends, who is also a dreamer and also part of the deferred action, is running to be able to win a scholarship. Your vote counts!!!!! Please!!!! Vote!!! It takes only a few min. Visit her project page at and click “Vote for this Idea” to vote for her! 1. Click vote and sign up with your email 2. Then go to your email account and open the email from "GOOD Maker" to confirm your vote. Please!!! Keep the DREAM support rolling!
  20. So Obama won tonight! That is good news to not only Democrats but to us who are part of the Deferred action, who also would likely support Obama.. I heard one of my peers say something along these lines. "N*gg* is excited [that Obama won] so he won't have to get deported" And we all cracked up!!! Do you believe now that Obama will pass the DReam Act? In addition, 65% of Americans have voted that illigal immgrants should attain status. What is your opinion? Thoughts?
  21. Hello everyone - I have been thinking about establishing a Fund that would provide Financial Aid for those individuals that qualify for Deferred Action, but that are not able to finance the Application Fee for the Biometrics and Employment Authorization. Below are some thoughts. Please feel free to provide feedback: Dream Act Fund (Not 100% sure the name can be used, but I will use it for now) The fund would work to finance a portion/all of the expense related to filing for DACA/EAD It would basically work like a scholarship fund The screening process has to be rigorous in order to avoid potential scams Not limited only to High School students, or to Hispanics for that matter The emphasis of one of the qualifications has to be on education and on people that want to take advantage of many opportunities that are available whenever DACA status is granted In regards to staff, the idea would be to get volunteers in several locations throughout the country: Miami, Chicago, NY/NJ, Boston, LA/SF, etc The volunteers have to belong to the forum and have to be willing to invest some of their time in the logistical/administrative process One of the requirements to qualify for aid would be to have the potential candidates sign up to the Forum and participate actively, providing feedback and helping fellow dreamers. In addition, the Fund could serve as a Marketing Tool in order to promote the many resources available, and the constant stream of feedback/information from other dreamers. Some screening requirements could be: Be a High School student High School Diploma or equivalent Enrolled in College/Technical School/Advanced Education Programs Having to submit Essays (although not sure what they have to be about) Topics (3, 5, 10 year plan, etc) How many Essays (1, 2, 3?) How long each Essay (200, 400, 1,000 words?) [*]Household information How many live at home Monthly household income Expenses Currently employed? As a preliminary idea, the funds could be pooled in a Paypal account, which allows the flexibility of transferring funds, it is very easy to receive donations online, and it is very secure. The fund would hypothetically work in the following way: The funds would be provided via Paypal by potential donors Volunteers would receive applications by potential candidates Screening process would determine if they would qualify and what would be covered If applicant qualifies for Full Aid, the Fund would cover USCIS related expenses (Only!) Shipping expenses [*]If a certain applicant is accepted, the volunteer would be notified, and funds would be transferred from Paypal to volunteers Bank Account It is imperative that the volunteers have a 'low risk' Bank Account, meaning, the account is never overdrafted so there are no risks that the bank would use funds transferred from The Fund to cover personal expenses of the volunteer [*]The volunteer would acquire a money order from their bank and be able to ship the materials of the candidate [*]The Fund would be advertised mostly through Social Media and Word of Mouth. Volunteers would be encouraged to promote the fund as they want, as long as the Purpose/Guidelines/Objectives are clearly stated - they will not be allowed to modify it as they please - for consistency/campaign purposes [*]Even though Fund management is centralized, Marketing activities are Decentralized, and are up to the volunteers discretion. However, the more we market and acquire funds, the more people we will be able to help In a nutshell, this is basically how the Fund would work. There would be a strong need to advertise the Forum as well, since it is a great tool for all of the Dreamers to access information/share their burden, and also since it contributed greatly to the development of the fund. Also, I will research if there would be any need to register the Fund as a Non-profit, or if it can operate without registration. I am very serious about this, and I would like to be able to help people achieve their dreams one step at a time. I bet most of you guys would like to also. Please feel free to give ideas, ask questions and provide any feedback in regards to what is presented above. Keep in mind that this is not final and that it is merely a rough draft. Thanks in advance for your input. Regards, Santiago.
  22. My name is Brittany, I am a high school student in New York from Northern Italy and I am an arts' major. My class and I are advertising the Dream Act or Deferred Action for fellow students. Any feedback or suggestions would be appreciated. Thank you, Brittany
  23. So how often do you check your case status on I check it once in a while I can. I also notice it's kinda slow to update so its somewhat a lost cause!!?
  24. (AP) WASHINGTON — Less than two months before a presidential election in which both parties are fighting for the key Hispanic vote, the Obama administration has approved the first wave of applications from young illegal immigrants hoping to avoid deportation and get a work permit. The Homeland Security Department is notifying a small group of people this week that they have been approved to stay in the country for two years as part of President Obama's Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program. The first approvals come just three weeks after U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services started accepting applications for the program Mr. Obama and Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano first announced June 15. In an internal document obtained by The Associated Press, the government had estimated previously that it could take months for each application to be reviewed and approved. So far, about 72,000 people have applied to avoid deportation. "Following a thorough, individualized case review, USCIS has now begun notifying individuals of the determination on their deferral requests," DHS spokesman Peter Boogaard said in a statement Tuesday. DHS said background checks, including fingerprinting, are being conducted on each immigrant before an application can be approved. The average wait time for approval is expected to be about four months to six months. Most applications for immigration benefits take several months for USCIS to process. In certain circumstances, people can pay extra fees to speed up the process. There currently is no such option for deferred action applications. To be eligible for deferred deportation, applicants must have come to the U.S. before they turned 16, be 30 or younger, be high school graduates or in college, or have served in the military. The immigrants could not have a serious criminal record. Successful applicants can avoid deportation for up to two years and get a work permit. Applicants must pay a $465 paperwork fee that is expected to cover the cost of processing the work permit and fingerprint collection. Homeland Security has estimated that as many as 1.04 million immigrants could apply to avoid being deported in the program's first year, with about 890,000 being immediately eligible. According to the department document, it could cost between $467 million and $585 million to process applications in the first two years of the program, with revenues from fees estimated at $484 million. That means the cost to the government could range from a gain of $17 million to a loss of more than $101 million. The policy change came just months before what is shaping up to be a tight presidential election. Wooing Hispanic voters has been considered key to helping Mr. Obama win a second term. The plan to halt deportations for as many as 1.7 million illegal immigrants closely mirrors the failed DREAM Act, a bill that would have provided a path to legalization for many of the same immigrants expected to benefit from the government's deferred action policy. The new policy does not provide legal status for the immigrants. Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney has not said what he would do with the Obama policy if he is elected. He has previously pledged to veto the DREAM Act should it cross his desk. DREAM stands for Development, Relief and Education for Alien Minors. Republicans have uniformly criticized Mr. Obama's policy, as well as previous DHS decisions to stop deporting many illegal immigrants who do not have criminal records or otherwise pose no threat to national security or public safety. Rep. Lamar Smith, R-Texas, the chairman of the House Judiciary Committee, has derided the policy as "backdoor amnesty." "It's astounding that the president's administration can move so quickly to grant work authorization to illegal immigrants yet his jobs council hasn't met in over eight months to find solutions to put unemployed Americans back to work," Smith said Tuesday. "Such a quick turnaround for these amnesty applications raises serious concerns about fraud and a lack of thorough background checks. President Obama and his administration continue to put illegal immigrants ahead of the interests of the American people." Last month, a group of Immigration and Customs Enforcement agents sued the department in federal court in Dallas, accusing the administration of violating federal law and forcing ICE employees to break the law by not arresting certain illegal immigrants. Napolitano and ICE Director John Morton were named as defendants. An informal adviser to Romney on immigration, Kansas Secretary of State Kris Kobach, filed the suit on behalf of the agents. "It places ICE agents in an untenable position where their political superiors are ordering them to violate federal law," Kobach said at the time. "If they follow federal law, they will be disciplined by their superiors." On Tuesday, Sen. Jeff Sessions, R-Ala., sent a letter to Morton questioning the new policy and how it is being implemented. He cited reports of immigration officers being threatened with punishment for trying to enforce immigration laws, an allegation outlined in Kobach's suit. "The speed at which the deferrals are being granted continues to raise severe concerns about fraud and the administration's ability to verify items like age of entry, educational status and even current age," Sessions said. "But the bigger issue is that the administration has effectively nullified existing federal law with the stroke of a pen. Moreover, it is a pure fiction that its non-enforcement policy is limited to those theoretically eligible for DREAM." Source:
  25. This thread is for you guys/girls to disuss processing times for applications routed to Nebraska... Talk about when you subitted your application, any problems your facing. When people look at this thread it should give people some more insight on what to expect and long it should take on average.