President Obama implemented the deferred action policy that allows undocumented youth to remain in the United States for a two year period, in August 2012. Eligible undocumented youth between ages 16 and 31, who were smuggled into the United States can file applications and receive deferred action status and stay back in the country for two years though they may not be granted lawful status. At the same time, this status also permits them to work and drive legally in the country. Nevertheless, all the undocumented immigrants who are eligible for deferred action status have not filed their petitions and the US Department of Homeland Security has recently stated that only a very small fraction of undocumented immigrants have applied for deferred action status, so far.
According to the US Department of Homeland Security(DHS), around 900,000 undocumented youth in the United States are eligible for deferred action status but the DHS has received only 300,000 requests so far and the USCIS has approved only 53,000 applications. Though DACA is a great program for the undocumented youth, there are many undocumented immigrants who have not yet thought about applying for deferred action status through the government will not use the details that the undocumented immigrants provide to identify and deport them.
But this program requires a lot of paperwork and the applicants will have to submit a number of supporting documents along with their applications to establish that they are eligible for deferred action status and this requirement prevents many from filing their petitions as they do not have all the documents that are required, though they are eligible. Moreover, there are few limitations and there a variety of eligibility requirements that must be met by the undocumented youth and they must be students, high school graduates or must have served the military, to file their petitions. Apart from that, the presidential election prevented some from applying for deferred action status and some also feel that the filing fee is too high. However, the US government believes that more undocumented youth will soon file their deferred action applications as deferred action is a step towards helping the undocumented immigrants who are also a part of the country, to realize their American dream.