Under certain executive actions enacted by President Barack Obama, immigrants who meet certain criteria may receive what is known as deferred action. Deferred action allows immigrants who meet these criteria to obtain employment authorization and to be protected from removal or deportation.
The largest deferred action program is known as Deferred Action for Parental Accountability or D.A.P.A. To qualify for D.A.P.A., an immigration must (1) be the parent of a U.S. citizen or lawful permanent resident, (2) have continuously lived in the U.S. since January 1, 2010, (3) have been present in the U.S. on November 20, 2014, and (4) have not been convicted of certain criminal offenses. (The D.A.P.A. program is currently under review by the U.S. Supreme Court and is not currently in effect.)
The other major deferred action program is known as Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals or D.A.C.A. To qualify for D.A.C.A., an immigrant must (1) have come to the United States before their sixteenth birthday, (2) have continuously lived in the U.S. since January 1, 2010, (3) have been present in the United States from November 20, 2014 to the present day, (4) have graduated from high school, obtained a general education development (GED) certificate, or be in school on the date they submit their application, and (5) have not been convicted of certain criminal offenses.