The process involving the forced departure of foreign nationals from the U.S. now takes place within the context of Removal Proceedings, previously known as Deportation Proceedings. Proceedings to remove or deport a foreign national may be brought whether they are in the U.S. legally or not since there are many instances where an individual lawfully in the U.S. may commit an act that subjects them to deportation. In most cases, the foreign national will have the right to be represented by an attorney, at no expense to the government and to present any and all defenses to deportation/removal before an order is issued. Having a seasoned immigration attorney on your side when defending against removal proceedings is essential, and calling the Law Offices of Richard Hanus is the first step toward maximizing your chances for success.

In the simplest cases, the foreign national is placed in removal proceedings because he merely overstayed his visa or entered the U.S. without authorization. In these cases, the defense will usually be “cancellation of removal” as long as the individual accumulated more than 10 years of presence in the U.S., has good moral character, and can show that their removal from the U.S. will cause a U.S. citizen or resident parent, spouse or child to suffer “exceptional and extremely unusual hardship.” The key to the success of such a defense will be the submission of detailed documentation and testimony to the court establishing that all elements of cancellation of removal relief are being met.

A foreign national defending against deportation may also present a defense based on a fear of returning to their home country due to persecution they face because of their race, religion, political belief or social group. This type of defense, known as Asylum, Withholding of Removal and Convention Against Torture relief, also must be well documented and supported by detailed testimony. Ideally, this type of defense is supported by the testimony of an expert on conditions in the country the foreign national is fleeing.

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In other cases, the foreign national placed in removal proceedings is already a lawful permanent resident (Green Card status), but was convicted of a particular criminal offense that subjects them to removal. In some cases a criminal alien, even those with multiple criminal convictions, may be eligible to be considered for relief from removal – most often, Cancellation of Removal for Lawful Permanent Residents, but only if the criminal convictions at issue do not fall under one of the toxic categories of crimes, such as “aggravated felony.”

Like other avenues of relief from deportation, Cancellation of Removal for Lawful Permanent Residents must be supported by detailed documentation and witness testimony. For this defense, the foreign national’s family ties, long time residence, community service, hardships to U.S. family members, and conditions in the foreign national’s home country are among the factors the court will consider in deciding the foreign national’s application for relief.

In cases where a foreign national, whether a Permanent Resident, a lawful nonimmigrant or even undocumented is the subject of a criminal proceeding, it is absolutely necessary that an experienced immigration attorney be consulted so that the foreign national is well informed of the immigration/deportation consequences of any prospective guilty plea.

Whatever the charges of removal/deportation, Richard Hanus will put to work his 25+ years of experience providing removal or deportation defense services to maximize a foreign national’s chances of remaining in the U.S. Often, the foreign national facing deportation or removal will walk away from proceedings with an improved immigration status – such as a Green Card by way of an application for relief before the Immigration Court. Based on Richard Hanus’ decades of experience practicing exclusively in immigration law, you have every reason to contact Richard Hanus so he can put to use his expertise to help put a halt to your deportation.