Immigration Law: Common Defenses If You're Facing Deportation Part 1

Immigration Law: Common Defenses If You're Facing Deportation Part 1

If you’re facing deportation, you’re going to be worried, anxious, and uncertain about your future. You may even wonder if you have any options, especially in the face of the current administration and its policies. No matter how hopeless you may feel, please understand that you may have options, any of which can prevent your deportation and protect your status here in the future. Below are some common defenses that may apply to your situation. Cancellation of Removal Cancellation of removal is what its name implies - your deportation proceedings are cancelled or stopped. Standards of eligibility depend on whether or not you are a lawful permanent resident of the United States, otherwise known as a green card holder. If you are a legal permanent resident (LPR) facing deportation, you may be eligible for cancellation of removal if you have:
  • Been a green card holder for at least five years.
  • Resided continuously in the United States for at least seven years after you were legally admitted and before receiving notice of removal proceedings.
  • Never been convicted of an “aggravated felony,” which in immigration law refers to certain offenses such as murder, rape, firearms trafficking, and fraud or tax evasion involving more than $10,000.
  • Never been granted Cancellation of Removal before
Note - If you pleaded guilty to a criminal offense before April 24th, 1996, you may also apply for a waiver of your conviction under the section 212(c) waiver if you are a green card holder, have lived legally in the U.S. for seven years, and served less than five years in prison for an aggravated felony. If you are not a lawful permanent resident, cancellation of removal is only an option if you:
  • Have lived in the U.S. continuously for at least 10 years (or accrued presence for the same amount of time) before receiving your notice of removal proceedings.
  • Can demonstrate that you have maintained a “good moral character” during the 10-year period. A clean record and letters of recommendation from friends, employers, and respected members of the community will help.
  • Have never been convicted of an aggravated felony.
  • Can prove that your deportation would create an exceptional and extremely undue hardship to a child, spouse, or parent who is a legal permanent resident. A common example is a loved one with a physical or mental disability who relies on you for their care.
Adjustment of Status Adjustment of status allows you to apply for permanent residence from within the U.S. You may be eligible for this form of relief if you:
  • Married a U.S. citizen
  • Have a child who is over 21 and a citizen of the U.S.
  • Are the child of a U.S. citizen
Be aware that your eligibility may be affected if you were convicted of a drug crime, a crime of moral turpitude (e.g., murder, rape, incest, child abuse) or two crimes that involved sentences of at least five years, or if you are otherwise inadmissible. Contact a California Immigration Attorney These are some examples of your options if you are facing deportation. Speaking with an experienced California immigration attorney can help you determine which form of relief is most compatible with your circumstances. At Landerholm Immigration we will review your case meticulously to understand its circumstances and formulate an effective defense strategy. Don't wait - call our San Francisco office at (510) 488-1020 today so we can start building a legally compelling case on your behalf.
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