Experienced Deportation Defense Attorney in Fort Walton Beach, Panama City and Pensacola, FL
Knowledgeable, skilled representation for removal proceedings
Although deportation hearings are considered civil cases, the immigration court process feels very much like a criminal proceeding. There is a charging document (the Notice to Appear), a prosecuting attorney (the assistant chief counsel from U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement) and an immigration judge. Depending on the reason for removal, an individual may be held in custody or have to post a bond to be released. And, of course, the potential result of a removal case — removal from the United States — feels very much like a punishment. You should not face such a daunting process, or risk such a devastating result, without quality legal representation, which you can get from the knowledgeable, caring attorney and his team at Southern Star Immigration.
Having practiced immigration law for more than 16 years, our removal attorney and his team are familiar with the unique procedures and practices of immigration court. We represent clients in immigration courts throughout the southeastern United States. Since immigration law is federal and immigration courts are part of the Department of Justice, our removal defense attorney and his team can represent clients anywhere in the nation.
Removal attorney and his team understand immigration court proceedings
The deportation process or "removal proceedings" begin when you are issued a document called a Notice to Appear identifying you and giving you a date when you must go to immigration court. It also states:
- Why you have been ordered to appear before an immigration judge, stating whether you are a citizen of the United States or some other country
- Whether you entered the country with or without inspection and when
- Whether you have a right to remain here now
- Whether you are removable from the United States and if so, under what statutory grounds
If you are in removal proceedings, now is the time to find a capable immigration attorney. Look for someone who does more than process paperwork. Find a skilled immigration trial lawyer, because that's what your removal hearing is — a trial to determine whether you will be ordered removed from the United States, or whether you can get relief from removal.
Obtaining relief at your removal hearing
The removal defense attorney and his team at Southern Star Immigration have extensive experience in removal hearings. We're skilled at gathering the evidence you need and presenting your case in the best light possible. Depending on the facts of your case, you may be eligible for different types of relief:
- Adjustment of status — An eligible party, who for some reason has not previously applied for permanent residence in the United States, but who qualifies for an immigrant visa through a family member or employer, may be granted an adjustment of immigrant status to lawful permanent residence.
- Asylum — Immigrants who cannot return to their country of origin because of a demonstrated threat of persecution due to their race, nationality, membership in a particular social group, religion or political opinions may receive asylum if they apply within certain time limits and do not have disqualifying grounds based on moral character issues.
- Cancellation of removal — Some individuals may qualify to have their removal proceedings cancelled and obtain a green card if they have been in the United States for at least 10 years, can establish good moral character during that time period, and have a U.S. citizen or lawful permanent resident spouse, parent or child who would suffer some form of highly unusual or exceptional hardship if they were removed from the country.
- Withholding of removal — Some individuals qualify for withholding of removal, if they can demonstrate a likelihood that they will be killed or seriously injured if returned to their home country.
- Termination of proceedings — A person who proves eligibility for a new immigration benefit while in proceedings, such as a green card, a U visa, or a VAWA self-petition, can ask the Immigration Judge to terminate his or her removal case.
- Voluntary departure — If a person has no other relief available, he or she may request voluntary departure. If granted, the person may be allowed up to 120 days to leave the U.S. at his or her own expense. Voluntary departure is preferable to removal, because it has fewer negative consequences for future immigration.
- Prosecutorial discretion — An individual in removal proceedings can ask the Department of Homeland Security not to proceed with the case. If the Department decides to extend “prosecutorial discretion”, the case is administratively closed. Whether the Department decides to offer prosecutorial discretion in any particular case depends on evaluation of the positive and negative factors.
Representation in immigration court is very important, because your defense relies on an in-depth analysis of the available relief and a persuasive argument as to why you deserve such relief. Our removal attorney and his team can present the facts of your case in the most favorable light according to U.S. immigration law.
Get experienced legal help for removal hearings throughout the Southeast
With locations throughout the southeastern United States, Southern Star Immigration also provides essential legal representation for deportation defense in Montgomery, Dothan and Mobile, Alabama and a host of other cities across the region. For dedicated, personalized and local service, contact Southern Star Immigration by calling 855-692-4649 or contacting our office online.