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4 common defenses to deportation

Individuals immigrating to the United States already face a mountain of hardships, including the huge amounts of documentation and legal paperwork needed to stay in the country. 

To relieve some of the stress of the unknown, immigrants can familiarize themselves with some common defenses to removal and deportation. 

1. Applications for permanent residency

Occasionally, a green card application may work as a deportation defense. Permanent residency applications depend on an approved visa petition. Using a family member with United States citizenship, individuals can change from nonimmigrant to immigrant status in order for them to get legal status. An “Adjustment of Status can also derive from an approved employment-based petition. 

2. Prosecutorial discretion

The decision to close or terminate the removal proceedings is in the hands of the government agency or attorney directing the deportation. If a deportation case closes based on prosecutorial discretion, individuals facing removal might have the opportunity to apply for work authorization. Depending on the person’s other applications on file, this will not include the right to travel. 

3. Renewal of form I-751

The government’s attorney may begin removal proceedings against an individual as a consequence of an untimely filing of the I-751 petition to remove condition on residence. An immigration judge can renew the I-751 petition as a defense to deportation. 

4. Asylum

People who fled a past harm in their home country or live in fear of future persecution can file a request for grant of asylum. These applicants must demonstrate that the persecution they fear or actually suffered resulted from discrimination based on their nationality, religion, race, political opinion or membership in a certain social group. A grant of asylum leads to the individual obtaining legal status in the United States, a green card and a work permit. 

Overall, there are ways to defend against deportation and working with a legal team may help immigrants get a better chance in court.