How Many DACA Recipients are Currently in the US? Unveiling the 2023 Data


Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals, commonly known as DACA, has been a topic of significant interest since its inception in 2012. This program, set up by President Barack Obama, grants undocumented immigrants who arrived in the US as children a renewable two-year period of deferred action from deportation. Along with this, they also receive eligibility for a work permit. As we step into 2023, the pressing question many have is, “how many daca recipients in the us?” As of December 31, 2022, this figure stood at approximately 580,000 active DACA recipients. To put this into perspective, these recipients make up a noticeable fraction of the estimated 11 million undocumented immigrants currently residing in the US.

  1. Summary of How Many DACA Recipients in the US
  2. Current DACA Population
  3. Eligibility and Criteria
  4. Impact on the Economy
  5. Legal Challenges
  6. Additional Resources
  7. Conclusion

Given the sizeable number of recipients and the ongoing discussions about immigration reforms, understanding the distribution, eligibility criteria, economic impact, and legal challenges surrounding DACA becomes pivotal.

Summary of How Many DACA Recipients in the US

Aspect Details
Latest Count (Dec 31, 2022) Approximately 580,000
Top State with Recipients California
Economic Impact Households with DACA recipients have $24 billion after-tax spending power
Legal Status Under scrutiny, future uncertain

Current DACA Population

By diving deeper into the numbers, it’s evident that certain states host a more substantial portion of DACA recipients. Leading the list is California, accommodating over 220,000 DACA recipients. Following closely behind are states like Texas, Illinois, New York, and Florida.

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Most DACA recipients are not just numbers but young adults with dreams and aspirations. Over half of them are under 25, making them integral to the American workforce and its future growth.

Eligibility and Criteria

Being a DACA recipient isn’t automatic. There’s a list of strict criteria one must fulfill:

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  • Arrival in the US before turning 16.
  • Being under the age of 31 as of June 15, 2012.
  • Current enrollment in school, possession of a high school diploma or GED, or an honorable discharge from the U.S. armed forces.
  • A clean slate when it comes to criminal records.

While the official count stands at 580,000, it’s worth noting that counts with less than 10 active DACA recipients are treated differently in data representation.

Impact on the Economy

The economic contributions of DACA recipients are undeniable. According to insights from the American Immigration Council, households with DACA recipients boast an impressive $24 billion in after-tax spending power. Besides this financial influence, they contribute billions in taxes yearly.

But their impact doesn’t stop at monetary contributions. These recipients are attending colleges, establishing businesses, and founding families. A remarkable fact to note is that over 250,000 U.S. citizen children have DACA recipients as parents.

Legal Challenges

DACA’s journey hasn’t been devoid of turbulence. The program faced severe challenges, especially during the tenure of President Donald Trump, who sought its termination. But, thanks to a federal judge’s intervention, the termination was halted, keeping the program alive.

While the Biden administration has expressed support for DACA, its long-term future remains shrouded in ambiguity, with decisions possibly resting on legislative movements.

Additional Resources

For those looking to delve deeper, resources such as “Key Facts on Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA)” and “DACA Anniversary: 11 Years of Growth & Success” can provide enriched insights.


As we contemplate “how many daca recipients in the us”, it’s essential to recognize their significance in the socio-economic fabric of the nation. With over half a million recipients, the DACA program, despite its legal challenges, remains an essential cog in the American societal machine.


Which state has the highest number of DACA recipients?
California leads with over 220,000 recipients.

What’s the economic impact of DACA recipients on the U.S.?
Households with DACA recipients have an after-tax spending power of $24 billion.

Is the DACA program still active?
Yes, the program is active, but its future remains uncertain due to ongoing legal challenges.

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— by Akhil Agnihotri