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Parviz Malakouti-Fitzgerald, Esq.

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  • Writer's pictureParviz Malakouti-Fitzgerald, Esq.

5 Huge Ways Volunteering/Community Service Can Help an Undocumented Immigrant

Updated: Jan 29, 2022

If you are a Dreamer that cares about protecting your DACA and putting yourself in the best situation to get on the path to citizenship moving forward then continue reading. 👇

Last updated: January 29th, 2022

5 HUGE Ways that volunteering/community service can help you if you are DACA or otherwise in a precarious immigration situation.

1) I-601A provisional waiver - discretionary factors AND I-601 waiver. If you marry a U.S. citizen and apply for a waiver (Perdon), most of the time, it'll be the I-601A provisional waiver. Generally, in the context of Dreamer immigration when people say "un perdón", they are speaking about a waiver, and particularly an I-601A or I-601 waiver. Either way, community service = big advantage. ✔️

2) 42B cancellation of removal - POSITIVE EQUITIES. 42B is one of the few big remedies available to some individuals who are unfortunate enough to find themselves in removal proceedings (deportation court). Community service = big advantage. ✔️

3) Negotiation for plea bargain if you ever run into trouble with the law. Yes - community service and good moral character can and often is the difference that makes a Prosecutor agree to let you off with a lesser charge (which might make you be able to renew DACA again - DUI anyone?). Community service = big advantage. ✔️

4) DACA Renewal IF you end up being convicted of a crime or SOME other disqualifying factor. Wait, I thought DACA renewal was black and white. Either you meet the guidelines or you don't, right? WRONG. Anytime you run afoul of the guidelines for DACA renewal eligibility, USCIS will decide AT THEIR DISCRETION whether to approval your renewal or not. Discretion --> do you DESERVE it? i.e. are you a good person? Community service = big advantage here. ✔️

5) HR 6 the Dream and Promise Act of 2019 and future Dream Acts. HR 6 (of which the "Dreamer" portion was HR2820) has several scenarios in which applicants would be granted the benefit at the discretion of the Attorney General. Past dream acts did too. Future dream acts will too! Remember, discretion --> do you DESERVE it? You better believe community service comes into play. Community service = big advantage. ✔️

Questions? Thoughts? Disagreement? Write them in the comments below.

Contact a qualified immigration attorney for case-specific advice.

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