Charlotte Deportation Defense Attorney
Deportation is a very difficult thing. In many cases, people have built a life in the United States. They often have friends, family, employment, a social scene, and so much more that are suddenly put at risk of being lost all at once.
At Steven T. Meier, PLLC, we understand that you want to keep the life you’ve got, and we’re ready to help you fight for it.
Every deportation process is unique, but there are generally four different hearings involved:
- Bond Hearing – In this hearing, a bond is set, much like in a criminal trial.
- Master Calendar Hearings – In these hearings, the respondent (the person at risk of being deported) is given the opportunity to respond to any allegations made and to provide any defense as to why they should not be deported.
- Contested Master Hearing – There are some circumstances where the judge, without getting into a full trial, would like to hear both the government’s and the respondent’s side on a particular issue.
- Merits Hearing (or Individual Hearing) – If all the prior hearings have gone the respondent’s way, then a merit hearing may be used to determine a final ruling. This acts as a kind of trial based on the defenses that you believe you have against deportation.
In all these hearings, it can be beneficial to work with a lawyer. They can represent you and make the case for your defense against deportation.
Defending Against Deportation
There are a variety of different ways that deportation can be avoided. Certain criteria must be met for them to be a viable option, but United States law does allow for a number of ways in which you could avoid deportation. Some of these include:
- Cancellation of Removal for a Lawful Permanent Resident – A criminal conviction may lead to a lawful permanent resident being placed in removal proceedings, which is another name for the deportation process. These removal proceedings may be canceled, but three criteria must be met for that to be a possibility. The criteria are that the lawful permanent resident must:
- Prior to conviction, have lived in the United States for seven years
- Have been a lawful permanent resident for at least five of those years
- Not have an aggravated felony conviction
- Cancellation of Removal for a Non-Permanent Resident – A non-permanent resident may also be placed in removal proceedings. There is, though, hope for cancellation of these as well if certain criteria are met. The criteria for cancellation of removal for non-permanent residents are:
- No disqualifying criminal convictions
- Have lived in the United States for at least 10 years
- Have been of good moral character for at least 10 years
- Have a spouse, parent, or child who is either a United States citizen or lawful permanent resident who, upon your removal, would suffer exceptional and extremely unusual hardship
- Prosecutorial Discretion – If your case is not considered a priority by the Department of Homeland Security, they have the authority to use prosecutorial discretion. This means that they could “recalendar” your case or even administratively close it.
- Asylum – For those who fear persecution upon the return to their home country, asylum may be an option that is available to them. There are some criteria that must be met for this to work. The persecution must be either at the hands of the government, or the government must be either unable or unwilling to stop persecution that is occurring at the hands of others. The persecution must also be based on one or more of the asylum seeker’s traits, including:
- Political opinion
- Membership in a social group
- Withholding of Removal – This may be an alternative for those who are unable to get approval for asylum.
- Convention Against Torture – This is part of a United Nations agreement that may prevent your deportation if you face torture or persecution upon returning home.
- Adjustment of Status – In some circumstances, you may be able to apply for lawful permanent residence and halt removal proceedings.
- Waivers – You may be eligible for an I-601 provisional waiver that could put an end to proceedings.
A lawyer can help you better understand if you may qualify for one of these options. We can also help you make your case to the court.
What a Deportation Defense Lawyer Can Do for You
The entire immigration process, including deportations, can be very difficult to navigate. There are a variety of ways that deportations can be challenged, but it can be difficult to understand which option is going to be right for you.
The first thing that your lawyer can help with is taking a close look at your situation and helping you understand what means of fighting deportation is going to be most appropriate for you.
Whatever the ideal option is for you, there’s likely to be a lot of forms and paperwork involved. At Steven T. Meier, PLLC, we have experience with these things and understand how they should be managed to give you a substantial claim for protection from deportation.
Working with a lawyer like us to ensure that all paperwork is filled in a thorough, convincing manner, and then distributed to the proper channels can help your case tremendously.
Lastly, your case will likely need to go before an immigration court. We can represent you in those proceedings. We have both a depth of understanding of the laws that will be addressed there and experience working with immigration courts. Those things can be a tremendous asset to your case.
We Can Help Fight Your Deportation
If you’re facing deportation from the United States, then you may feel like there’s no hope. That, though, is not the case. Many deportation efforts have been successfully challenged. People who believed that they were on their way out eventually became legal permanent residents.
Know that it is possible to avoid deportation if you meet the right qualifications. Even then, though, the qualifications might not be enough. You also need to make the argument against deportation clear to the right authorities.
That’s something we can do at Steven T. Meier, PLLC. We have experience working with immigration authorities and can present the strongest case for why you should be allowed to stay. If you’re facing the possibility of deportation, then contact us today.