A cancellation of removal may be the only option for some non-lawful permanent residents (LPR) facing possible deportation in U.S. Immigration Court. An approved non-LPR cancellation of removal offers a way for the individual to remain in the United States and receive documentation that provides a legal right to live and work in the country permanently.
However, you can only request cancellation of removal once you are already in removal proceedings. You will need to present evidence and prove your case to the judge overseeing the removal. If the immigration judge grants the cancellation, the removal process will stop, and you will receive a green card.
Requirements for Non-LPR Cancellation of Removal
In addition to being involved in removal proceedings and being a non-lawful permanent resident, there are other qualifications for receiving a cancellation of removal. For example, applicants must:
- Have been in the United States continuously for at least 10 years before removal proceedings began, with only short absences
- Have a history of good moral character during that time
- Not have a criminal conviction for a serious crime, primarily those included in 8 USC 1227
- Show that their removal would cause what the U.S. Department of Justice refers to as “exceptional and extremely unusual hardship” for their spouse, child, or parent who is a lawful permanent resident or citizen of the United States
It is important to know that the immigration judges who oversee cancellation of removal cases have a lot of discretion on several of these factors. They will need to use their judgment based on the evidence presented to determine if the immigrant has good moral character and if their family will face hardship if they are removed.
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Non-LPR Cancellation of Removal Claims Are Often Difficult to Prove
In most cases, the hardship requirement is most difficult to document. There are several parts to this requirement:
- The immigrant must have a lawful permanent resident or U.S. citizen dependent.
- That dependent must be closely related – usually a spouse, child, stepchild, or parent.
- The immigrant must show that the dependent will suffer “exceptional or extremely unusual hardship” if the immigrant is removed.
You will want to work with an immigration attorney to ensure you have enough evidence and the right type of evidence to prove these requirements. This could include:
- Financial documents
- Proof the immigrant pays the bills
- Medical records for physical or mental health conditions
- Affidavits from those familiar with the situation
During removal proceedings, it is crucial to fully illustrate to the immigration court why you or your family member deserves to remain in the United States and be granted legal status. Ultimately, the immigration judge will decide whether or not to grant a cancellation of removal using the evidence provided.
How does an Immigrant Apply for Non-LPR Cancellation of Removal?
You can only apply for non-LPR cancellation of removal while involved in immigration proceedings. You must apply before the judge in your case following the process outlined in 8 C.F.R. § 1240.20. If you are eligible, the immigration judge must inform you of the option to apply.
An immigration attorney can determine if this is the best option for you, file a Form EOIR-42B and the required filing fee, and gather evidence to prove you meet the requirements.
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Only a Limited Number of Non-LPR Cancellation of Removals Are Allowed
Perhaps the most challenging hurdle for many who qualify for a non-LPR cancellation of removal is that the U.S. government will only issue a limited number of them each year. Generally, there are 4,000 granted per fiscal year. These are often dispersed very quickly.
Many immigration judges reserve their decisions on cases until the following year when more are available, which could make the process much longer. Since a cancellation of removal is often the best or only option for immigration relief in these cases, there is little that applicants can do about the wait.
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Discuss the Possibility of a Non-LPR Cancellation of Removal with Your Attorney
If you or a loved one is involved in removal proceedings and is a non-LPR, you may want to discuss cancellation of removal with an attorney. You can schedule a strategic session with our law firm to learn if this is an option in your case.
Non-LPR cancellation of removal is a unique process with requirements that differ from other types of immigration relief. In addition, it may be the only option to prevent the proceedings from leading to deportation. If you are considering applying, you will want to work with an immigration law firm familiar with non-LPR cancellation.
Speak with Our Team About Your Options Today
Our passionate and understanding team at New Frontier Immigration Law helps immigrants living and working in the United States. We fight for our clients to remain in their homes and with their families.
Our immigration lawyers manage cases concerning a wide range of issues. Call (623) 235-8649 for a strategic session with one of our attorneys today.