Important Immigration News for Families
President Obama’s plan for immigration reform introduced several Executive Actions that potentially have an impact on undocumented household employees nationwide. If you’ve hired someone that does not have authorization to work in the country, you may be able to help them gain temporary legal work status. Here is what you need to know:
** UPDATE: A federal judge has issued an injunction relating to the rollout of the DACA and DAPA programs. Applications will not be accepted at this time. Please continue to check this page for updates.
There are 2 programs your caregiver could be eligible for to gain work authorization.
The Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program and the Deferred Action for Parental Accountability (DAPA) program are initiatives the President has expanded to allow undocumented immigrants to stay in the country to work.
Your caregiver may be eligible for DACA if she moved to the United States before the age of 16 and has lived here continuously for the past 5 years. There are other additional requirements she may have to meet, so click here for more information on DACA eligibility.
Your caregiver could qualify for DAPA if she is the parent of a U.S. citizen or lawful permanent resident, has lived continuously in the United States for the past 5 years and is not in the process of being deported. Unfortunately, there are not many more details on DAPA at the moment, so check back with this page frequently for updates.
If your caregiver qualifies for DACA or DAPA, you may be able to help.
In order for your caregiver to prove that she has lived in the country for the previous 5 years, she’ll need to provide documentation to US Citizenship and Immigration Services. Any paystubs, tax forms or employment contracts you’ve given to her can help establish a paper trail and help with her application.
Aiding your caregiver will not get you into trouble.
When you hired your caregiver, you were supposed to verify her work authorization via Form I-9. If you failed to do so or if you didn’t realize she wasn’t authorized to work in the country, you will not be penalized when she attempts to apply for the DACA or DAPA programs. If she is granted temporary work authorization, it will be important that you follow all household employment tax and payroll laws for the 3 years is allowed to work in the country. Failure to do so could disqualify her for permanent resident consideration.
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