Deferred action is a legal concept that has existed since the 1950s. It’s a type of resident status, similar to a green card or visa. However, deferred action is much more limited in its scope. Whereas a green card or visa allows an immigrant to work or live in the US respectively, deferred action only prevents deportation. In other words, if you are granted differed action, you won’t be deported. However, differed action doesn’t change your resident status. Therefore, you won’t become a citizen through differed action.
President Obama brought new attention to deferred action. First, he introduced Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) in 2012. This new policy meant that the government wouldn’t deport immigrant children that arrive in the US. He expanded this program to include other types of immigrants in 2014. Some research showed that DACA helped to boost certain economic factors. However, many regions disapproved of the law, and certain courts tried to ban it. In addition, the Trump administration has reviewed the program and wants to ban it. The Supreme Court of the United States is currently hearing arguments about DACA, and expects to decide whether it will continue to be legal in 2020.