Immigration Reform for DREAMers

In November of 2012, Senators Kyl (R-AZ), Hutchison (R-TX), and McCain (R-AZ) introduced the ACHIEVE Act. If voted into law the ACHIEVE Act will allow for individuals who meet a criteria to be eligible for a series of temporary conditional nonimmigrant visas: W-1, W-2, W-3.

Key differences from the DREAM Act:

  • No green card/ permanent status for the beneficiaries
  • More narrow class of individuals who are eligible

A sample of the basic eligibility requirements for the initial W-1 visa:

  • Initially entered the United States under the age of 14
  • Under the age of 29 years on the date of enactment (32 years for those who earned a bachelor’s degree/associate’s degree prior to enactment of the Act)
  • Continuous physical residence in the United States during the 5-year period preceding enactment
  • Good moral character since the date of initial entry
  • Has not been convicted of a felony, crime of moral turpitude, or a misdemeanor under Federal or State law punishable by imprisonment of more than 30 days. (Exception exists for traffic violation that does not include alcohol or controlled substances)
  • Does not have a final order of removal (with some exceptions)
  • Earned a high school diploma from a high school in the U.S. or a GED; AND
    • Is enlisted/intending to enlist in the military;
    • Is admitted as a student to an institute of higher education;
    • Has earned a bachelor’s degree or an associate’s degree; or
    • Has served for a period of at least 4 years in one of the branches of the Armed Forces and was not dishonorably discharged

To view the draft of the text, please click here.