You are currently viewing USCIS improves protections for immigrant minors and will offer Deferred Action

The United States Citizenship and Immigration Services announced policies to improve the protection of immigrant children in the United States who have been victims of parental abuse, abandonment, neglect or mistreatment.

“Today, we are taking action to help immigrant children in the U.S. who have been abused, neglected, or abandoned and offer them protection to help rebuild their lives…These policies will provide humanitarian protection to vulnerable young people for whom a juvenile court has determined that it is in their best interest to remain in the United States.”

USCIS Director Ur M. Jaddou

USCIS also updated the USCIS Policy Manual to consider deferred action and related employment authorization for noncitizens who have a Form I-360 Petition for Amerasian, Widowed, or Special Immigrant approved for SIJ classification but cannot apply for adjustment of status to become Lawful Permanent Residents (LPRs) because a visa number is not available.


  • Provides that USCIS automatically conduct deferred action determinations for noncitizens with SIJ classification who cannot apply for adjustment of status solely because an immigrant visa number is not immediately available. Noncitizens with SIJ classification are not required to submit a separate request for deferred action, and a separate request will not be accepted.
  • Explains that USCIS considers deferred action on a case-by-case basis to determine whether the noncitizen with SIJ classification warrants a favorable exercise of discretion.
  • Provides that a grant of deferred action to a noncitizen with SIJ classification is for a period of 4 years.
  • Explains that a noncitizen with SIJ classification who has been granted deferred action by USCIS may apply for, and be granted, employment authorization for the period of deferred action, by filing an Application for Employment Authorization (Form I-765), indicating category (c)(14).

This update is effective May 6, 2022, and applies to eligible noncitizens classified as SIJ before, on, or after that date, based on an approved Form I-360, Petition for Ameriasian, Widow(er), or Special Immigrant.

On our website there is a topic dedicated to the special immigrant juvenile status where you will find all the details regarding it.

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