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How to fill out Form I-821D for DACA Applicants

Updated on February 19, 2015

At Catholic Charities, many Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) between the ages of 15 and 31, pay for their services. They do this because the organization has a good reputation for helping non-citizens with citizenship and DACA. However. these services are not free and expensive to those at the bottom of the economic ladder earning $8 hr.

For instance, a consultation for DACA is $40, which takes 15 minutes to run through a checklist with a volunteer to determine eligibility. If they are eligible, to help them fill out the application for DACA, they charge another $160. This could take as little as 30 minutes to one hour, depending on their own situation and the documentation needed. If the documentation is all in order, the 821D form is filled out.

Form 821 is used for DACA applicants and once filled out sent via mail to the correct address. No need for an attorney in most cases and most are simply sent to immigration along with a $465 check payable to immigration. An attorney is needed when there are criminal history or police records.

Since most DACA applicants are American raised and are in high school or college, the form is fairly self-explanatory. I will only address items you need to know.

Item 3a - In most cases, answer No. You probably have never been deported.

Items 4 and 5 - you have neither, so leave blank. Item 8b- the country where you were born, which means in #10, you are citizen of that country.

Item 13 - ask your parents the date they entered the US. In item 14- where did they cross into the US? Usual answers are San Ysidro, CA., or, Nogales, AZ., are typical.

Item 15 is almost always- "EWI" unless you had a visa that expired and you are still in the USA. If you did arrive on a visa, items 16 -17 apply to you, but this is unusual in DACA applicants.

Part 2 of Form

Item 1a, b, is always Yes. Now, comes the section where you MUST list all places of residence where you have lived since entering the USA. This means if you arrived with your parents in 2002 and they moved a lot, you must list all the places you lived at since that time. At minimum, the city and state, but try to include the address.

Part 3 is usually all No, unless you have done one of those items. If so, you probably will not get approved, but be honest. They will find out.

Part 4, item 1a, is usually checked, and in 2a, the applicant signs and dates. Since you, the applicant are filling it out, skip Part 5.

Part 6 is seldom used.

Part 7 is used if you need more space for addresses where you have lived or other explanations.

The I-765 Form usually accompanies the DACA form. This will get you a work permit and Social Security #.

You are applying permission to accept employment, a work permit. Check the box where this is indicated.

Item 9 is left blank since you never had a SSN. The same with Item 10. In most cases, in item 11, the answer is No. In item 14, enter, Child. In item 15, enter EWI. Items 16 and 17 are usually skipped. Make sure you sign and date the form.

Congratulations, you saved $160 at least. But to be clear, the forms are not sent unless you have all the various supporting documents showing you spent your life in the USA and educated in US schools and other requirements. If you did, these would be attached to the forms and a $465 check would be included and mailed to the proper address.

It usually takes 4-8 months for the results.


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    • profile image

      TXSasquatch 4 years ago

      I understand. My cousin is one of the top immigration attorneys in the U.S., and I was her paralegal for a long time. I've completed countless DACA forms, but I would never tell someone how to do it. It's just too risky. When it comes to UPL, I prefer not even to approach the line, much less tiptoe on it. I'm not flaming you, and I hope that my tone isn't condescending. I just don't think that this sort of thing is a good idea.

    • perrya profile image

      perrya 4 years ago

      The line is shady and fine-helping others fill out forms is not that, according to some. The forms are so basic and many non-English speakers need help. There are many immigration paralegals working in this capacity with these simple cases. if there is a criminal issue or record, those go to an attorney or one is consulted. In fact, most immigration paperwork does not require an attorney, just ask Nolo Press.

    • profile image

      TXSasquatch 4 years ago

      Unauthorized Practice of Law - A paralegal can't give legal advice, and that might well include instructions for completing legal forms.

    • perrya profile image

      perrya 4 years ago


    • profile image

      TXSasquatch 4 years ago

      Uh . . . you know, some folks might consider this UPL.


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