Before you have that “courageous conversation” with the young foreign national who is working for you and who may or may not have authorization to work, remember that there are serious penalties for knowingly employing unauthorized workers.

On August 15th , USCIS began accepting applications for Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals to the US.  Under this well publicized program,  people who arrived in the US before age 16, are out of status or who entered without inspection , who have been in the US “continuously” for 5 years, were present in the US on June 15, 2012 may file for Deferred Action and Employment Authorization. Deferred action doesn’t confer any status or give rise to permanent residency or citizenship, but does remove the specter of deportation for those who file and meet these and the other criteria.

It is estimated more than 800,000 childhood arrivals , kids from my point of view as they have to be under 31 to apply, will be able seek this much heralded relief  Of course it is not for all of the DREAMers who meet the age and residence requirements 

Many not for profits have gotten involved in workshops and other pro-bono assistance for those who can possibly benefit.  One authoritative on line portal that is supported by the American Immigration Lawyers Association (AILA) is  Own the Dream ( in English) or ( in Spanish).  It provides a self-screening tool as well as a great deal of relevant information.

When you are presented with an Employment Authorization Document from a young foreign national newly authorized to work , it may be a dream come true for your worker and protection from employer sanctions.