Nearly a decade after the U.S. Department of Homeland Security created the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program to provide protections to undocumented immigrants brought here as children, Judge Andrew Hanen of the Southern District of Texas struck down the program on July 16, ordering U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) to stop issuing any new DACA benefits.

Although Judge Hanen did rule that DACA itself was illegal, in recognition of the impact of terminating DACA on the 616,000 people who currently benefit from the program, he did not require the agency to terminate any DACA protections or stop renewals while his decision goes through the appeals process. People who only recently submitted initial applications will not receive approvals from USCIS.

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