Documented Dreamers Gain Some Protection from Aging Out

Mar 23, 2023

According to the American Immigration Council, there are over 200,000 documented dreamers, children with temporary legal status derived through their parents’ visas, in the United States who are vulnerable to aging out of their protected status. A majority of these documented dreamers and their families are from India and China, which is where the majority of America’s high-skill visa holders come from. 

Under the new guidance, the applicant’s calculated age will take into account the amount of time that the visa petition was pending, as well as any time that the applicant was physically present in the United States after the filing of the visa petition. This was designed to ensure that applicants are not penalized for delays in the processing of their visa petitions through the loss of their child status.

However, many advocates for immigrant rights acknowledge that this new guidance is just a band-aid on a much larger wound facing Dreamers in America. DACA recipients still have no pathway to U.S. Citizenship, and bipartisan discussions on immigration reform have met no end. The American Immigration Lawyers Association, for example, has argued that this policy change still leaves some dreamers at risk of aging out. 

It is important to note that not all documented noncitizen children will become eligible for lawful permanent resident status under the new policy change. Applicants must meet specific criteria, such as being unmarried and under the age of 21 at the time of filing the visa petition. Additionally, applicants must provide evidence to support their eligibility under the new guidance.

If you believe that you may be eligible for lawful permanent resident status under the new policy, consult with an experienced immigration attorney today at the Law Offices of Wiliani-Malek. Our attorney can review your case and help you determine your eligibility, as well as assist you in submitting the necessary documentation to USCIS. Call +1 (714) 432-1333 today!