LEWIS & KAPPES, P.C. Immigration Attorneys Welcome Deferred Action
Announcement, Warn of Potential Fraud and Hold Bilingual Informational Meetings on
New Immigration Policy
For Immediate Release
Steve Tuchman 317-432-1138 (Cell)
317-639-1210 (Office) or
Indianapolis (June 19, 2012) - Immigration attorneys at Lewis & Kappes, P.C., an Indianapolis-based law firm with one of the largest immigration practice groups in the Midwest, welcomed the announcement from the White House and the Department of Homeland Security last Friday, potentially offering hundreds of thousands of young people the opportunity to work legally in the United States for the next two years and avoid being removed from the United States during that time.
"This policy brings hope for young people who, before, were living in doubt and uncertainty," said [former] Lewis & Kappes director Angela Adams. "These individuals have done nothing but work hard and succeed since being brought to this country, and now they can move on with their lives for the next few years without looking over their shoulder."
According to the Department of Homeland Security, each individual applicant will have to prove all of the following:
- Entry into the United States while under the age of sixteen and physical presence in the United States on June 15, 2012;
- Continuous residence in the United States for at least five years prior to June 15, 2012;
- Current enrollment in school, graduation from high school, honorable discharged from the United States Coast Guard or Armed Forces, or receipt of certificate of general education development;
- No convictions of a felony offense, a significant misdemeanor offense, multiple misdemeanor offenses, or otherwise not a threat to national security or public safety; and
- Age between 15 and 30.
Those who meet all the criteria may be eligible to apply for deferred action status for a period of two years. That eligibility will also allow them to apply for employment authorization and will be subject to renewal. Individuals not currently facing removal proceedings will be able to affirmatively apply for deferred action. It will also be available to those who have cases currently before an immigration judge, as well as to those who have final orders of removal or deportation.
Individuals not in removal proceedings before an immigration judge should not apply for deferred action at this time. The Administration will provide details regarding the application process within the next sixty days. This policy does not grant citizenship, permanent residency, or any other permanent legal status to any individual, and eligibility will be determined by the discretion of the reviewing government officials.
"Our firm is constantly monitoring the updates from the Department of Homeland Security, and we will be informing the community on what steps can be taken at the appropriate time," said Lewis & Kappes director and Chair of the firm's Immigration Practice Group, Steve Tuchman. "This is an exciting time, but people have to be careful not to assume needless risk by following the advice of non-attorneys or 'notarios' who are only interested in taking advantage of others and not in helping those who qualify."
Anyone claiming they can submit an application or can immediately secure an employment authorization document should not be trusted, and individuals who believe they qualify for deferred action should contact a legitimate and licensed immigration attorney. Those who follow the advice of "notarios" or others who lack the necessary legal background could have their cases denied and possibly be placed into deportation proceedings.
Lewis & Kappes will be conducting free bilingual information sessions regarding this announcement and the qualifications for deferred action for those interested. Please contact Lewis & Kappes at 317-639-4874 to sign up to attend one of these sessions.
Lewis & Kappes, P.C. is a law firm based in Indianapolis, Indiana. The firm of more than thirty attorneys provides services in almost every legal field, and the firm's immigration practice group is comprised of more than 15 attorneys, paralegals, and legal assistants who have experience in representing clients with immigration matters related to employment, family relationships, education, and removal defense. Lewis and Kappes attorneys and staff are fluent in English, Danish, French, Hebrew, Mandarin, Cantonese, Portuguese, Serbo-Croatian, and Spanish.