If you are facing deportation, you need to take your situation very seriously. Deportation (or “removal”) has serious legal consequences that can affect you and your family for years to come. The good news is that you may have options for remaining in the United States. Four of the most common methods for immigrants to avoid deportation are:
- Adjustment of Status
- Asylum, Withholding of Removal, and the Convention Against Torture
- Cancellation of Removal
Adjustment of Status
Immigrants who have not yet secured a green card may seek an “adjustment of status” under these circumstances:
- Getting married to a U.S. citizen
- Having a child over 21 years of age who is a U.S. citizen
- Having a parent who is a U.S. citizen
Many individuals do not realize that being related to a U.S. citizen can help them avoid deportation. If you qualify for an adjustment of status, you may be able to secure a green card without the need to go abroad. However, U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) may still seek to deport you if you have a criminal record involving certain offenses.
Asylum, Withholding of Removal, and the Convention Against Torture
Depending on your personal circumstances, you may also be eligible to apply for asylum, withholding of removal, or protection under the Convention Against Torture. These provide protection against deportation for immigrants who:
- Fear harm in their home country because of their race, religion, nationality, political views, or membership in a particular group;
- Face threats to their freedom or life due to their race, religion, nationality, political views, or membership in a particular group; or,
- Fear that they will face torture upon being returned to their country of citizenship.
Cancellation of Removal
You may be eligible to avoid deportation through a “cancellation of removal,” if you meet the following requirements:
- You held a green card (were a lawful permanent resident) for at least five years;
- You lived in the United States continuously for seven years after being admitted to the country; and,
- You do not have any aggravated felony convictions.
You can also apply for cancellation of removal if:
- You have been physically present in the United States for 10 years;
- You have maintained good moral character while in the U.S.; and,
- Deportation would cause “exceptional and extremely unusual hardship” to a spouse, parent, or child who is a U.S. citizen or lawful permanent resident.
Finally, if you are facing deportation due to a criminal conviction, you may be able to seek a waiver in order to remain in the United States. However, it is important to understand that waivers are available only in limited circumstances. For example, you may be eligible for a waiver if you pled guilty before April 24, 1996 and meet certain other requirements, or if your deportation would cause extreme hardship for a spouse, parent, or child who is a U.S. citizen or lawful permanent resident.
Disclaimer: This Article Is Not Legal Advice.
Never rely on an article for legal advice as the law frequently changes, information may not be accurate, there may be exceptions to a rule, and reliance may be detrimental. Always consult one of our experienced attorneys for competent, current, and accurate legal advice.
Do You Have Immigration Questions? Contact Crooks, Low & Connell, S.C. Today
To find out if you may be eligible to avoid deportation, call (715) 842-2291 or send us your contact information online today to speak with an immigration attorney at the Wausau, Wisconsin law office of Crooks, Low & Connell, S.C.