JULY 2023 UPDATE
The Department of Homeland Security (“DHS”) announced a new process that permits workers who are involved in labor investigations to petition for deferred action and ultimately a temporary work authorization. This process is very new and we are still learning the details.
Deferred action is a discretionary decision made by the federal government that permits certain persons who are undocumented to stay in the country and work legally for a designated period. Deferred action does not confer legal status to individuals rather it reflects DHS’ intention to avoid deportation of those
persons for a period of time. This is a recently announced policy that offers temporary but important protection for vulnerable workers.
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Every situation is unique. This is general information intended for educational purposes. It does not legal advice.
Who can seek deferred action and work authorization through this process? Workers who are part of a workplace investigation by a labor agency, like a victim of labor violations or a person who may act as a witness to a labor investigation. This deferred action process offers a person work authorization for two years and is renewable while an investigation is ongoing. Once the labor investigation is closed we are unsure that the work permit will be renewed.
For now, DHS states that if the deferred action is not renewed they do not plan to initiate deportation proceedings against someone unless someone is seen as a threat to national security. However, there is always a risk when you are an immigrant that you may be on the radar of the U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (“ICE”). It is important that each person makes a decision with their attorney or representative to see if this process is helpful to them especially, if they have a history of interactions with the criminal system or (an) order(s) of deportation.
Continue coming back to this page for the latest update as we get more information.