How do I prove that I had no lawful status?

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If you are preparing an initial application for DACA, the instructions indicate that you should include proof that you had no lawful status on June 15, 2012. (DACA renewal applicants do not need to provide this proof.)

But many applicants do not have proof because they entered the country without inspection (illegal border crossing) and never had any contact with immigration authorities.

You only need to submit documents if you were admitted or paroled, or otherwise obtained a lawful immigration status on or before June 15, 2012. Or if you were in removal proceedings. Examples of acceptable documents include:

  • Form I-94, I-94W, or I-95 Arrival/Departure Record showing the date your authorized stay expired
  • If you have a final order of exclusion, deportation, or removal issued as of June 15, 2012, submit a copy of that order and related charging document, if available
  • an INS or DHS charging document placing you into removal proceedings, if available or
  • Any other document that you believe is relevant to show that on June 15, 2012, you had no lawful status

Someone that entered the country on a travel visa but never returned to his or her home country would be in the U.S. with no lawful status once the visa expires.

But if someone enters without inspection and was never in removal proceedings, there is no proof available and no proof necessary in the application.

Source: USCIS

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