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Help...can i still qualify for deferred action???

Delano, CA |

when i was 16 i was cited for truancy, but i went to court and got community service and i completed it.Will this still affect me??

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Attorney answers 5


Not likely. I wouldn't worry about it, if you can otherwise meet all the other DACA requirements.

Behar Intl. Counsel 619.234.5962 Kindly be advised that the answer above is only general in nature cannot be construed as legal advice, given that not enough facts are known. It is your responsibility to retain a lawyer to analyze the facts specific to your particular situation in order to give you specific advice. Specific answers will require cognizance of all pertinent facts about your case. Any answers offered on Avvo are of a general nature only, and are not meant to create an attorney-client relationship.



Do you think i will need an attorney for my case??


There are several forms that need to be completed. The issue is whether you were adjudicated a deliquent or tried as an adult. It seems like you were cited as a delinquent, so you do not seem to have a conviction. However, there may be confusion, so I strongly recommend that you consider getting help from an experienced immigration attorney, where you can afford one.

This is general information, not legal advice, and does not create an attorney client relationship.


Generally, juvenile convictions will not bar you from qualifying for deferred action.

Please click the link below for additional information.

Carl Shusterman, Esq.
Former INS Trial Attorney (1976-82)
Board Certified Immigration Attorney (1986 - Present)
Subscribe to our Free Immigration Newsletter
600 Wilshire Blvd., Suite 1550
Los Angeles, CA 90017
(213) 394-4554 x0
Web: (English) (Spanish)

(213) 394-4554 x0 Mr. Shusterman is a former INS Trial Attorney (1976-82) with over 35 years of immigration experience. His response to your question is general in nature, as not all the facts are known to him. You should retain an attorney experienced in immigration law to review all the facts in your case in order to receive advice specific to your case. Mr. Shusterman's statement above does not create an attorney/client relationship.



Although juvenile convictions are not an automatic bar to deferred action eligibility, your question is "Will this still affect me?" Yes, it quite possibly might.

Did you read the instructions for the I-821 on page 7? It specifically states there that even if an applicant meets all the eligibility requirements for deferred action, the USCIS still may use its discretion to deny the application if the applicant is not found to deserve a favorable exercise of that discretion. Thus, even though juvenile truancy is unlikely to qualify a particularly serious misdemeanor for criminal reasons, it certainly will be considered in the exercise of discretion. Was there was something unusual going on in your life at that time that made it especially difficult for you to get to school? Or do your school transcripts, grades and attendance record indicate that you generally did not take full advantage of your educational opportunities?

All DACA applicants should be making a case not only showing how they meet the threshold eligibility requirements, but also why they are deserving of a favorable exercise of discretion. Particularly if you have something like this on your record, you need to make a strong case about why the all the "positive" things happening in your life outweigh this negative, what you learned from the experience, and particularly if there were other issues (such as an immediate relative's death or deportation, etc.) that caused a significant disruption in your normal routine at the time you were cited.

Best wishes,

Ms. Doerrie's answer to your question is general in nature, as not all facts and circumstances relating to the specific person(s) and situations involved are known to her. Ms. Doerrie recommends consulting with an immigration attorney regarding your specific facts and circumstances prior to making any legal decision or submitting any form or application. This response does not constitute legal advice or create an attorney/client relationship.



How can someone prove that one truancy case was dismissed?


It really depends on the specifics of your situation. But one thing is clear, you will need an attorney to address this situation. Gather all documents and evidence of your incident as a minor and speak to an attorney soon.

Best of luck,

Sanjay A. Paul, Esq.
(888) 373-2602

This is not legal advice. No attorney client relationship exists between us.

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