There are many people in this area who, for one reason or another, do not benefit of proper documentation, i.e. their status is “undocumented”. Some undocumented residents may be in what is termed “removal” status, that is, the United States Customs and Immigration Service (USCIS) is taking steps to send these people back to their own country, or deport them.Attorney Joe Knape wants to be sure that you know your rights if your case is scheduled for removal proceedings.
Because the Immigration Laws can be complex, it is always best to have someone on your side who knows the laws and can apply them to assist in your particular circumstance.
Just because you are in removal status does not mean there are no defenses available. There are several things you can do in your attempt to prevent deportation. One of your choices may be to claim that you are not subject to removal. When you are brought to Immigration Court, the judge will ask if you will admit or deny the factual allegations before the court, or if you will concede (that is admit) or contest (that is deny) any of the charges regarding your removability.
If you deny the allegations and contest the charges, it is now up to the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) to prove that you should be removed. If you do not have documentation, then the DHS will probably be able to prove that you are removable. It could be, however, that the DHS may have problems showing you are removable, and if that is the case, you can ask the judge to decide in your favor and dismiss the case. Even if you are found to be removable, there are additional steps you can take to try and remain in this country.
Once you enter into the removal proceedings, the Immigration Judge must tell you the types of removal relief that may fit your circumstances. Just because the Judge has the responsibility to tell you what the Judge thinks your opportunities for relief may be, does not mean that it is not important to have an attorney present. Remember, the Judge is handling many cases during the day and may not have the time to study your case sufficiently to make an accurate determination. Your Immigration Attorney, like Joe Knape, will take the time to familiarize themselves with your case and know exactly why you should be allowed to stay in this country. In addition, your Attorney can present the relevant details of your life in the United States to the Judge in the most flattering light possible.
There are many reasons why you may qualify for relief from removal.
- If you have entered the country legally, you may qualify for an adjustment of status. In this case, your status would change from nonimmigrant to immigrant.
- If you entered the country before 1972 and meet residency requirements and are of good moral character, and meet other criteria, you may have your status adjusted through what is called registry.
- If you fear that when you return to your country you will face persecution, torture or death you may be able to apply for asylum or one of several other judgements.
- If you have been in this country without documentation for over 10 years and you can show that your removal would cause a severe hardship to a relative who is a legal U.S. resident.
- If you are a woman and have been in this country for over three years, you may possibly avoid removal if you left your country after being battered or abused by a relative.
- There is a provision for a deferral. In this case, you are not removed from the US, but you case is simply put on hold.
- Prosecutors also have some discretion. They can decide whether or not to pursue the cause for removal.
- In very rare cases, you can get an act of Congress. This is usually a private bill that is passed due to some extreme circumstance.
- Finally, if all else fails, rather than being removed, you can voluntarily return to your country. That would be preferable to a removal if you had plans to acquire your documents once you returned to your country, and wanted to return to the US.
Each of these criteria come with a set of circumstances that must be in place before the ruling can be put in place. Having an experienced, skilled Immigration Lawyer like Orlando’s Joe Knape increases your chances of being able to stay in this country.
Attorney Joe Knape can be reached for a Free Consultation at 407-508-7774.