Under the policy, undocumented immigrants meeting certain qualifications could apply to avoid deportation and get a work permit beginning August 15. The policy covers immigrants who arrived in the United Sates when they were at least 15 years old and were younger than 31 as of June 15.
The immigrants must also have lived in the United States for at least 5 years straight. They must either be in school or have graduated high school or the equivalent. Their criminal record and any threat they pose to national security is also considered.
Beyond avoiding deportation, immigrants who obtain work permits will also receive a Social Security Number. And, they can apply for a driver’s license. Although these immigrants still cannot apply for Social Security benefits and may not be eligible for student loans, these identifying documents can be very helpful in finding a job.
Tomas, a 23-year-old undocumented immigrant in Faribault, Minnesota, is one person who hopes to benefit from the deferred action policy. He has spent much of his life under the threat of deportation, but the new policy brings even more opportunities for him.
Tomas is one year away from obtaining a bachelor’s degree in business management. He knows that obtaining a work permit can set him on the road to a good job, and hopefully, a bright future.
Source: Pioneer Press, “Ruben Rosario: Deportation deferral may bring ‘Tomas’ out of hiding,” Ruben Rosario, August 11, 2012.
Our law firm handles situations similar to those discussed in this post. To learn more about our practice, please visit our Minnesota immigration page