The news media informs us daily that deportations are increasing under the Trump administration, but the truth is that deportations have continued to climb over the past 10 years. Certainly, the Trump Administration has announced that it intends to ratchet up the removal of foreign nationals, with plans to target up to 8 million immigrants.
However, the U.S. legal system has built-in protections before the feds can remove you from the country. In particular, due process requires an order of removal before deportation. If you find yourself in removal proceedings, you should consult with a Cook County removal order attorney as soon as possible.
Before the government can deport an immigrant, a removal hearing must be held in immigration court before an immigration judge. You will know you are in removal proceedings when you receive a Notice to Appear (NTA), which should include factual allegations against you, including any crimes you have allegedly perpetrated. You should also receive a court date on the NTA or in a follow-up communication.
Immigrants have a right to present evidence on their behalf at the hearing and should expect to be questioned by the government. At the end of the merits hearing, the immigration judge will render a decision.
When responding to the allegations against you, you can request Cancellation of Removal, which is a form of discretionary relief. Cancellation is available to both legal permanent residents as well as for non-permanent residents, though the standards are different.
Generally, a legal permanent resident can qualify if he or she has had permanent resident status for five or more years, has lived in the country for at least seven years, and does not have a conviction for an aggravated felony.
If you receive a final order, then all hope is not lost. Immigrants can appeal the order to the Board of Immigration Appeals (BIA), which is an administrative body in Virginia. The BIA generally performs a paper review of removal proceedings, which means that it rarely hears oral arguments.
If you prevail before the BIA, then your deportation will be halted. BIA decisions are binding on Department of Homeland Security officials, as well as on immigration judges. Although the BIA has a long backlog of cases, you can typically ask for a stay that will allow you to remain in the U.S. until a final decision has been made.
If you lose before the BIA, then you can bring another appeal before a federal judge in district court. Of course, the government can also appeal a case that it loses before the BIA to a federal judge.
The removal process is complicated and hard for many immigrants to handle alone. By hiring an experienced removal order lawyer in Cook County, you can pursue all avenues of relief, including bringing an appeal if one is warranted.
At Kriezelman Burton & Associates, we leave no stone unturned as we help clients fight a removal proceeding. For more information on how we can help, please contact us today. We offer a free, confidential initial consultation.
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