Nearly 1.8 Million Undocumented Immigrants May Be Helped by Obama's New Immigration Policy. Deferred Action Lawyer Richard Herman Believes This Will Boost the Economy

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Noted Immigration Lawyer and Deferred Action Attorney Richard Herman, the AV-Rated, co-author of "Immigrant, Inc." and owner of, responds to August 3, 2012 announcement by Department of Homeland Security on filing procedures for requesting 2-year deferred action from deportation and work permits, and highlights economic benefits to country.

According to the MIgration Policy Institute, nearly 1.8 million undocumented immigrants are expected to benefit from the Deferred Action program announced by U.S. Secretary of Homeland Security Janet Napolitano on June 15, 2012. This number has more than doubled from the the original number of anticipated eligible individuals, as the federal government announced program guidelines that would include more applicants.

The new immigration policy will provide deferral of deportation and two-year work permits to immigrants who are at least 15 but under 31 years of age, came to the U.S. before their 16th birthday, and resided continuously in the U.S. for at least five years. Additional requirements include: graduated from high school, have a GED, currently in school, or honorably discharged veterans of the Coast Guard or Armed Forces of the United States, and have not been convicted of a felony offense, a significant misdemeanor offense, multiple misdemeanor offenses, or otherwise pose a threat to national security or public safety.

According to research by the Migration Policy Institute, the estimated number of eligible applicants in California and Texas is over 412,000 and 226,000, respectively. In Ohio, a state with few immigrants, it is estimated that over 8,100 individuals are eligible for this program.

Noted Immigration Lawyer Richard Herman, the co-author of critically acclaimed book, "Immigrant, Inc," applauds the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Service (“USCIS”) for its quick progress in developing a filing procedure and guidelines for the new Deferred Action program.

On August 3, 2012, USCIS issued a written statement and conducted a telephonic conference with stakeholders nationwide to provide more information on the filing process.

Many immigrants and those who work with them are relieved that USCIS is moving forward on the program and providing much-needed information to the anxiously-waiting undocumented community. “This is a key step forward in instilling confidence in the program and in preparing the public for August 15, 2012, the date that individuals can begin filing,” said Richard Herman.

The new information provided by USCIS includes the following:

  • Filing fee for deferred action and work permits will be $465, which is intended to subsidize the costs of administering the program, which could be used by 800,000 applicants, without increasing the fiscal burden on taxpayers. Fee waivers will not be accepted.
  • The form used to request deferred action, along with additional information and guidelines, will be available on August 15, 2012 and can be downloaded at that time from the USCIS website.
  • Applicants can begin filing for deferred action and work permits on August 15, 2012, not earlier.
  • Information obtained by USCIS during the Deferred Action filing process will not be used for immigration enforcement, unless a criminal, fraud, or national security issue is involved.
  • Applicants will be required to submit biometrics and undergo background checks.
  • Conviction for driving without a driver’s license will not be a disqualifying offense.
  • Applicants will mail their Deferred Action application along with a work permit application to a USCIS Lockbox. Four USCIS Service Centers will be responsible for adjudicating the applications.
  • It is anticipated that it will take several months to adjudicate the applications.

Those who have final deportation or removal orders, or are in removal proceedings, or who have never been detected by the government, are eligible to apply based on the above criteria.

Immigration Attorney Richard Herman believes that this is a good opportunity for undocumented immigrants who qualify, but cautions against relying on bad advice, particularly so-called “notaries” who are not licensed to practice immigration law.

Richard Herman said, “I am deeply concerned with immigrants falling prey to unscrupulous service providers who provide misleading or false information on deferred action. I have practiced immigration law for 18 years, and I know how complicated this field is. Even something that appears simple on its face can turn into an immigration nightmare. Bad advice can hurt. We've seen this many times before when immigration law has changed and immigrants, desperate for legal status, are vulnerable to empty promises by some agents, attorneys or notaries."

To further help educate the immigrant community on applying for the new deferred action program, which will provide the opportunity to obtain relief from removal and a 2-year work permit, Richard Herman is conducting workshops in various parts around the country.

Richard Herman has also launched a new website. “I launched to help educate the community about the benefits, and risks, of the deferred action program, said Richard Herman. The website http://www.Deferred-Action-Lawyer will provide updates and clarifications on the Deferred Action process as they become known.

As a national authority on the economic contributions of immigrants to America, Richard Herman is encouraged by President Obama's move to grant deferred action and support supporting immigrant talent, saying

"Deferred Action will make our country more competitive in the global economy. Young people with Deferred Action status will be able to attend college and work upon graduation. Granting deferred action will allow these young people to live up to their fullest potential and contribute to the economic growth of our country. Deferred action will have important economic benefits. According to a recent UCLA study, students that would be impacted by deferred action could add between $1.4 to $3.6 trillion in taxable income to our economy over the course of their careers, depending on how many ultimately gain legal status. This income is substantially higher than the income they would earn if they were unable to attend and complete a college education. In fact, research indicates that the average college graduate earned nearly 60 percent more than a high-school graduate. We have much to gain from doing right by these young people"

Recognizing that this Deferred Action program is a good step by the President but is not a substitute for comprehensive immigration law reform that must be passed by Congress, Immigration Lawyer Richard Herman said, “Congress has abdicated its duty to address the many immigration issues that have remain unresolved for decades. Our economy requires Congress to lead and pass comprehensive immigration law reform. As I argued in the book, “Immigrant, Inc.,” smart immigration reform will create jobs for Americans and make America stronger.”


Richard Herman is an immigration attorney with offices in Cleveland, Columbus, and Cincinnati. He serves clients in all 50 states. He has 18+ years of experience in immigration law, is AV-Rated, and listed in "Super Lawyers." He is the co-author of "Immigrant, Inc. -- Why Immigrant Entrepreneurs Are Driving the New Economy (and How They Will Save the American Worker)." (Wiley, 2009). He is one of the architects of a national movement to revitalize America’s economy through federal and local “immigrant friendly” policies. Herman travels the country as a speaker for the Partnership for a New American Economy, a national coalition founded by Mike Bloomberg & Rupert Murdoch and comprised of 500 CEOs and Mayors who believe in the economic benefits of smart immigration law reform and in welcoming immigrants. He has appeared on FOX News (The O’Reilly Factor), ABC News 20/20, National Public Radio, and interviewed in USA Today, BusinessWeek, Forbes, Inc., and in publications from around the world. He operates two websites: and

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