If a person lives in the USA illegally — without a visa or a green card — you need to be prepared for forced expulsion from the country and the fact that from now on the road to America will be closed to him.

However, it happens otherwise: sometimes the threat of being sent home is a great opportunity to legalize in the United States. To do this, you must go through the process of canceling the deportation.

What is it and what conditions must an illegal immigrant comply with? Let’s tell you more.

Who can get the right to cancel deportation

Not every illegal immigrant can go through this process — there are many requirements for those who want to stay in the United States in this way.

Among them are the following:

The immigrant has been in America for at least 10 years and has not left the country, at least for a long time. Each trip can be regarded by the immigration court as a complicating nuance — it all depends on its purpose;

if an immigrant is expelled, it will create serious problems for his relatives related to financial security, business, fatal disease;

the immigrant already has an American partner or even children who, upon birth, become US citizens;

An immigrant must be a trustworthy, honest and law-abiding person. Breaking the law is a clear indicator that a person will be sent home.

At first glance, it is not so difficult to prove that a person meets these requirements, but in reality this means a long collection of documents, as well as testimonies from people who are part of the immigrant’s social circle.

In addition, even the ideal candidate for the abolition of deportation may end up being sent back to their homeland. Why? It’s simple: in any case, the decision is made by the immigration judge, and if the evidence seems unconvincing to him, the issue is closed. Therefore, the more arguments you have in your own defense, the better.

Before preparing for the process of canceling deportation, it is worth studying your own case and considering whether there have been episodes in your 10 years of living in the United States that could convince the judge that you do not deserve the benefits of this country. If it seems that there are such moments, you need to use the help of a lawyer.
A competent specialist will not only tell you what evidence looks best and help you stay in the US — he will also work on the line of defense and the package of documents.
What is the peculiarity of each of the arguments that can be taken into account in court? Let’s consider them in more detail.

Living in the USA for 10 years

First of all, in order to convince an immigration judge that you should not be deported, you need to demonstrate that you have lived in the States for the past 10 years and did not make long trips.

The only exception is immigrants who spent 2 of those 10 years serving in the US military. In this case, the years of service will have a rather positive effect: you helped the country in which you dream of staying, although you are not its citizen.

Otherwise, the arrival of an immigrant launches the so-called “ten-year clock”: from the date of your appearance in the States, you need to accurately count 10 years, and after that you can count on the cancellation of deportation.

«The ten-year clock can stop in several cases:

  • you have been absent from the US for more than 90 days;
  • you have left the United States several times, and in total you have accumulated more than 180 days outside the country;
  • you broke the law;
  • you have received a subpoena to appear in court for a deportation hearing;
  • you left the US in accordance with a voluntary departure order.
To prove that you have been in the country for all 10 years, other people from your inner circle who will testify can help. It is also necessary to provide all documents that can help: credit card statements, proof of salary transfers, receipts for rent.

Having a U.S. Citizen Relative

To stay in a country where you were illegally staying, you need to have a close relative — a spouse, parent or child — who is either a US citizen or a foreigner with permanent residence, that is, a green card holder.

It’s easiest with older parents, especially if you’re supporting or caring for them because of their health issues. Then the immigration judge can be disposed: caring for close relatives of age is a noble and necessary thing.

As for the spouse, it is imperative to prove that returning to your homeland guarantees many difficulties, including for your family.

The most difficult thing is in a situation where the evidence for the cancellation of deportation is a child born in the United States and acquired citizenship by birthright.mpetent specialist will not only tell you what evidence.

Not everyone takes into account that the concept of «child» in US immigration law requires two important details to be taken into account:

  • he must not be older than 21;
  • He must not be married.

If one of these conditions is violated, your child can no longer be an argument that will help you stay in the US: in terms of immigration proof, he is an adult and will do just fine on his own.

It also means that the trial must take place before the child turns 21. This is problematic: hearings are long and they still need to wait. Depending on the complexity of the case, there may be several hearings, and then it is worth calculating everything in advance. If a child turns 21 in the middle of a trial, they will no longer be considered a reason to stay in the US.

Exceptional difficulties that deportation will cause

Any deportation is fraught with difficulties, but the problems are different. For example, if during a court session the emphasis is placed on the fact that in 10 years an immigrant has managed to forget his native language and will not be able to adapt to other conditions, it will sound simply ridiculous — not a single immigration judge will consider this a worthy argument in defense of someone who is trying avoid deportation.

The difference between hardship and exceptional hardship is pretty obvious. The former bring mild discomfort, the latter can, among other things, pose a threat to life.

What problems can become evidence for the cancellation of deportation? For example, a serious illness of a minor child and the lack of necessary medical care at home is completely. Under this condition, you are unlikely to be sent to a place where no one will provide the assistance of specialists at the proper level.

Also, the argument may be the presence of small children who do not know your native language, and in their homeland there is no support that can facilitate their adaptation — language courses or child psychologists who work specifically with immigrants and help them fit into a new society. In this case, you can safely count on the abolition of deportation.

Positive moral character

The problem with this argument is that the wording “highly moral person” is rather vague: for one immigration judge it will be enough that you have no criminal record behind you, for another, even drinking a few glasses of wine a week will be regarded as alcoholism — what kind of morality can go speech?

Among the things that make you a good person, including for immigration court, are:

  • no criminal record or any other problems with the law;
  • the absence of bad habits up to the use of drugs;
  • the absence of family problems that may come up during the trial — for example, having a partner in your home country with whom you have not actually divorced.

The rest is for everyone to judge for themselves. If you are studying your case and it seems to you that there is something that exposes you as a person far from moral standards, it does not hurt to consult a professional.

What Happens After You Win a Case

If, after the hearing, the immigration judge decides to cancel the deportation, you can only be congratulated — but the difficulties do not end there. Yes, the complex lawsuit is over, but now you need to officially gain a foothold in the United States.

Judges can only accept 4,000 annulments per year, so the limit is reached very quickly. Therefore, even if you have an application in your hands, there is no guarantee that it will be approved right now — you will have to wait.

As soon as you receive confirmation, along with it you will be given registration instructions — following them, you will become the proud owner of a green card.

Reversing a deportation is a rather difficult task, and an illegal immigrant is unlikely to be able to cope with it on his own. Some are unable to gather conclusive evidence, some do not know how to deal with a couple of dubious episodes that spoil the impression of them as future US citizens. In such cases, you should definitely contact an immigration lawyer.

Elizaveta Samorukova’s company will help anyone who wants to win a deportation cancellation case, but cannot create a convincing case. Our experts are glad to you at any time.