Find Free NJ Legal Information

Welcome to the LSNJLAWSM website, provided by Legal Services of New Jersey (LSNJ). LSNJ is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit offering free civil legal assistance to low-income people in New Jersey. Find legal information by clicking on a legal topic or typing a few words into the search box.

LAW Home > Legal Topics > Immigration > Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals/DACA

Renewal Process for Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA)


1. Am I eligible to renew my DACA?

If you received an initial grant of DACA, you are eligible to renew your status as long as you:

  • Did not travel outside of the United States on or after Aug. 15, 2012, unless it was with advance parole;
  • Have been living continuously in the United States since you submitted your last DACA application; and
  • Have not been convicted of a felony, a significant misdemeanor, or three or more misdemeanors and do not otherwise pose a threat to national security or public safety.

What offenses count as a felony?

A felony is a federal, state, or local criminal offense punishable by imprisonment for a term of more than one year.

What offenses count as a significant misdemeanor?

Under federal law, a misdemeanor is an offense with a term of imprisonment for more than five days and up to one year. The following offenses are considered significant misdemeanors, regardless of the actual sentence imposed:

  • Domestic violence
  • Sexual abuse or exploitation
  • Burglary
  • Unlawful possession or use of a firearm
  • Drug distribution or trafficking
  • Driving under the influence.

Any other misdemeanor offense that resulted in a jail sentence of more than 90 days will also be considered a significant misdemeanor.

What offenses count as a non-significant misdemeanor?

Any misdemeanor offense that did not involve any of the offenses listed above and resulted in a jail sentence of 90 days or less (including no jail time) will be considered a non-significant misdemeanor.

What about expunged or juvenile convictions or immigration-related convictions?

Immigration-related offenses considered as felonies or misdemeanors by state immigration laws will not count as disqualifying felonies or misdemeanors for DACA purposes.

Expunged convictions and juvenile convictions will not automatically disqualify you from deferred action.

Keep in mind that the decision to grant deferred action is handled on a case-by-case basis. USCIS has the discretion to make a decision based on all of your individual circumstances, including whether or not you have a criminal history as described above. Therefore, your criminal record, or lack of one, may not necessarily determine the outcome of your application.

2. When should I apply to renew my DACA?

You should send in your renewal application about 120 days, or four months, before your current DACA status expires. Do not send your renewal application 150 days or more before your status expires, as the application may be rejected for being submitted too early.

3. What should I include in my renewal request?

Your renewal application should include:

  • Form I-821D (you must use the newest version on the USCIS website)
  • Form I-765
  • Form I-765 Worksheet
  • Check or money order for a total filing fee of $465, made out to “U.S. Department of Homeland Security.”

You should not include any other documentation, such as the evidence you included in your initial application to show you meet the DACA requirements. But USCIS may ask for additional evidence after you file your application to verify certain things in both your initial and renewal applications. Also, if you have been arrested or placed into removal proceedings since your initial DACA grant, you will need to include relevant documents about these new factors in your renewal application (but you should talk to an experienced immigration attorney before doing so).

If you live in New Jersey, you should mail your renewal application to:

USCIS Chicago Lockbox Facility
P.O. Box 5757
Chicago, IL 60680-5757

USCIS Chicago Lockbox Facility
Attn: DACA
131 S. Dearborn – 3rd Floor
Chicago, IL 60603-5517
(for express/overnight deliveries)

Go to Direct Filing Addresses for Form I-821D, Consideration of Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (from USCIS) to confirm the direct filing addresses for DACA renewals.

For more information, see Renew Your DACA (from USCIS).

If you have not applied for DACA before and are interested in filing an initial application, you may still do so. You can read more at Consideration of Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) (from USCIS) or see Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals AND Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals—Tips for Filing.​​​​​​​​​​​