Prosecutorial discretion in granting deferred action

On behalf of the Obama Administration on August 18, 2011 Secretary Napolitano announced that immigration authorities are strongly encouraged to use prosecutorial discretion in granting deferred action in certain “low priority” cases.

Officials will review all cases already pending before the immigration courts and those cases that are considered “low priority” may be administratively closed.

Administrative closure is a temporary suspension of an immigration court case.

Although the administrative closure does not give legal status, if a case is administratively closed, the individual will be eligible to apply for a work permit, social security number and driver’s license. It’d be an alleviation to that very individual if they were to locate social security card near me – online application and apply for it effortlessly.

At this point it is not clear for how long the work authorization will be valid or the exact procedure how to apply for one.

On June 17, 2011, John Morton, Director of Immigration and Customs Enforcement, issued two memoranda encouraging the use of prosecutorial discretion and providing guidelines regarding the factors for determining if a case is high or low priority.  The decision is made on a case-by-case basis, but the factors that will influence a decision on prosecutorial discretion include:

  • the person’s length of presence in the U.S.
  • graduation from a U.S. high school or college
  • victims and witnesses of  certain crimes
  • cooperation with federal, state or local law enforcement
  • whether the person has a U.S. citizen spouse, child or parent
  • ties and contributions to the community
  • likelihood of permanent or temporary relief.
Read more at AILA

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