Removal and Deportation

When you or a family member is facing the dire consequences of removal, sometimes known as deportation, you need immediate legal help. An immigration attorney can help win your case and ensure that you are not unlawfully detained while your Removal Proceedings are ongoing.

Various forms of relief are available to those placed in Removal Proceedings, including, cancellation of removal, asylum, family petitions, protections for crime victims, or employment based immigration. Cancellation of removal is unique in that it is only available to respondents in immigration court proceedings, cancellation is discussed below, other types of relief are discussed on their respective pages.

Representation for your Bond/Parole Hearing

When a noncitizen comes into the custody of Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE), a deportation officer will determine whether to grant a bond or parole. Bond is money that you pay the government to be released from custody and return to your home in the US while you go through removal proceedings.  If ICE refuses to grant parole, set a bond, or you are unable to pay the amount, you can ask an Immigration Judge to reevaluate your detention.

Cancellation of Removal for Lawful Permanent Residents

If you are a US Lawful Permanent Resident, Green Card holder, and have been convicted of a crime, you may be facing removal proceedings. With the help of an excellent immigration lawyer you can keep your Green Card. You will bear the burden of proof to show the judge that you meet the legal qualifications:

  • You have lived in the US for a minimum of 7 years
  • You have been a lawful permanent resident for 5 years
  • You have not been convicted of an aggravated felony
  • You warrant the judge’s discretion in your favor.

Cancellation of Removal for Non-Lawful Permanent Residents

Even if you don’t have a Green Card but meet certain requirements, you may be eligible for a cancellation of your removal. You will need to establish that:

  • You have lived in the US for a minimum of 10 years
  • You have good moral character
  • You are married to a US citizen or Legal Permanent Resident, or you have a parent or child younger than 21 who is a US citizen or Legal Permanent Resident
  • That family member will suffer “extremely unusual” and “exceptional” hardship if you were removed.

Prosecutorial Discretion

Just like any other prosecutor’s office, Immigration and Customs Enforcement decides which cases it wants to prosecute fully and which it wants to settle without going to a full hearing.  Prosecutorial discretion is available to everyone but is not distributed equally. Having an experienced immigration lawyer working with you can greatly improve your chance of benefitting from prosecutorial discretion and having your removal (deportation) case closed or suspended.

Motions to Reopen or Reconsider

If you were deported or removed in the past, you may still be able to reopen your case or ask the immigration judge to reconsider the decision. You can ask the immigration court to reopen your case if you have new information that should have been considered by the court at the time you were ordered removed, if you or your country’s circumstances have changed and made you eligible for a new form of relief, or if the law has changed to make you eligible. One of the most common changes in life circumstances making someone eligible to reopen their case is if they marry a US citizen or have a US citizen child who is over 21. A consultation with an immigration specialist can help determine whether you case qualifies for reopening.


If an Immigration Judge denies your case and/or orders you removed, you may appeal the decision to the Board of Immigration Appeals (BIA). If the appeal is not successful you can appeal again to a federal appellate court, and even to the US Supreme Court. Appealing your case can allow you to remain in the US while it is pending.  You have 30 days to appeal the court’s decision so it is vital you contact an immigration attorney immediately after a denial or removal order.