DACA: The Essential Legal Guide

2nd Edition
ILRC Staff Attorneys
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The second edition of DACA: The Essential Legal Guide is a practice-oriented overview of Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA).  This manual is based on more than two decades of community education, outreach, training and technical assistance on issues impacting immigrant youth. We have also leveraged new information and experience gleaned over the course of the DACA program thus far.

Comprehensive and user-friendly, this manual consists of 11 easy-to-read chapters and appendices that cover:

  • DACA eligibility requirements
  • Entire process for representing a DACA applicant from initial client meeting to closing of your client’s case
  • Detailed discussion of the criminal bars to DACA
  • Tips on how to help clients obtain the necessary documentation to apply
  • Best practices on how to complete all of the immigration forms
  • Helpful suggestions on procedural issues and ways to effectively work with DACA applicants
  • Guidance on other immigration law risks or benefits that may affect DACA applicants 
  • Sample documents, forms, practice advisories, helpful guides, numerous examples demonstrating legal concepts, and several other essential tools for both private attorneys and nonprofit practitioners

New updates to this edition include:

  • Clarifications and tips on DACA eligibility, particularly meeting educational requirements and evading the criminal bars
  • New appendices and sample materials such as new policy guidance from USCIS, sample documents for applications, and resources on how to organize DACA workshops
  • A new chapter on what applicants can do after they receive DACA, including obtaining a social security number and traveling abroad under Advance Parole

For additional information and resources:

Visit our Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) web page.
Subscribe to the DACAexperts listserv by sending an email to dacaexperts-subscribe@yahoo.com.


DACA: The Essential Legal Guide is a valuable resource that provides thorough explanations of the various DACA requirements and uses practical examples to illustrate each section."

Kerry Conboy, Migration Counselor
Catholic Charities Community Services, NY