As we await the Supreme Court’s final decision on DACA, expected by June of 2020, USCIS continues to accept and grant DACA renewals. Anyone who has previously been granted DACA are eligible to apply under the current USCIS policy for renewal. Please note that USCIS is not accepting any first time initial DACA applications and will reject applications that are not filed using the current edition on Form I-821D (04/24/19) of the required forms.
Still, it is important to take all factors into consideration when renewing your DACA in light of DACA’s current predicament. The Immigration Law Offices of Hadley Bajramovic, PC recommends that DACA recipients consider filing renewals without hesitation before the Supreme Court makes a final decision.
DACA recipients should know that by filing your DACA renewal now, even if the rescission of DACA is sustained, USCIS could decide to continue processing applications received by a certain date. Although, we know that USCIS has been accepting renewal requests that are filed more than 150 days before expiration; those who apply more than 150 days in advance run the risk of receiving an extension of less than two full years. Some applicants have also reported renewal requests filed more than 150 days in advance are being held for a period of time before being adjudicated.
There is no guarantee that by filing 150 days before expiration will be granted. According to the archived DACA FAQs state that, while USCIS will accept requests submitted earlier than 150 days before expiration, the deferred action period will likely be granted from the date of approval. In other words, filing earlier than 150 days out could result in an overlap between a current DACA grant and the renewal grant. This means that the new renewal period may extend for less than a full two years from the date that the applicant’s current DACA period expires.
It is unclear how long USCIS will continue to accept DACA renewal requests and whether it will continue to adjudicate pending renewal applications if one or more of the injunctions is overturned. DACA recipients should understand the potential for losing their application fees if the Supreme Court allows USCIS to change its current policy before a pending renewal request has been adjudicated.
Ultimately, it is the decision of each DACA recipient to weigh these potential risks against the benefits of a DACA extension before deciding how early to apply or whether to apply at all. We the Immigration Law Offices of Hadley Bajramovic, PC recommend to those who decide to file a DACA renewal despite the risks, should consult with us for further options or reliefs about the risks of possible rejection if one of the injunctions is reversed, the loss of application fees if USCIS stops adjudications, or a shortened DACA grant for early filers if adjudication continues.