• James C. Hawkins

New Dream and Promise Act of 2019 Introduced in House

The House Democrats have recently introduced a bill that is designed to promote dreamers for permanent residence. The bill is called HR 6 and is commonly known as the Dream and Promise Act. The bill provides a path for permanent residence status (green card) for undocumented immigrants who came to the United States as children. These individuals are often referred to as Dreamers.

Eligibility for the Dream and Promise Act

Dreamers who would be eligible under the proposed Dream and Promise Act are those who have been continuously present physically in the United States for the four years immediately prior to the bill’s enactment. Those who are eligible must have entered the United States before their 18th birthday, been admitted to a university or higher learning institute or earned a high school diploma or GED or are enrolled in a program that assists with earning a GED.

In addition, applicants would need to pass a background check and register for military selective service if they are required to do so. They would need to pay a fee that is less than $495. Some applicants may qualify for a fee exemption. Applicants cannot be inadmissible due to criminal, security or terrorism grounds or for smuggling, student visa abuse, unlawful voting, avoiding taxation, practicing polygamy, or participating in international child abduction.

Applicants cannot have been convicted of a federal or state crime that is punishable by imprisonment for more than a year or convicted of multiple offenses that add up to 90 days or more imprisonment, excepting minor traffic violations. Also, they cannot have been convicted of a domestic violence crime.

The act also covers undocumented immigrants who apply as humanitarian protectees if they have been in the United States since at least 2016. After a period of five years the immigrant may apply for U.S citizenship.

Highlights of the Dream and Promise Act

The Dream and Promise Act would grant conditional permanent resident (CPR) status to a qualified person and cancel deportation. The conditional permanent resident status would be in place for a period not to exceed 10 years unless otherwise extended by the U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS). Conditional permanent resident status will be terminated if the person no longer meets the requirements set forth in the act.

A person with conditional permanent resident status can be granted Legal Permanent Resident status if he or she meets specific requirements.

  • Meets the inadmissibility requirements

  • Has not abandoned residence in the U.S. during the CPR status period

  • Has earned a degree from an institution of higher learning or technical school or served at least two years in the military or has been employed for at least three years with the majority of time through employment authorization

  • Can read, write and speak English

  • Pays the appropriate fee

  • Provides requested biometric and personal data

  • Passes the background check

It is important to note that this legislation is still in the beginning phase and has not yet been approved. It will likely undergo some changes and amendments before it proceeds. If the legislation passes it will provide a path to citizenship for Dreamers.

For help and guidance with immigration issues, contact us at BlackHawk Immigration Consulting.

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