Deportation Defense: How an Immigration Lawyer Can Help Non-Citizens?

In the case of Padilla v. Kentucky, the rights of non-United States citizens were expanded by the supreme court. It was decided that immigration lawyers can help their clients in their deportation defense. They must also be informed about the consequences of an immigration criminal conviction. This right expands the rights provided in the Sixth Amendment of the US constitution.

This development by the supreme court is very essential. This is because deportation is a grave punishment and it involves a criminal process. 

This decision of the Supreme court gives you an edge in the defense of your deportation case. This is because an immigration lawyer can guide you through the whole process. You can also be sure to be provided with the appropriate defense strategy. An experienced immigration lawyer ensures your constitutional rights are not violated.

What is deportation defense?

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Deportation defense involves an immigration lawyer advocating for non-US citizens facing deportation. You will be required to appear in an immigration court. You are expected to plead your case and state reasons as to why you should not be deported. This can also be done by your immigration lawyer on your behalf. That is why the most important factor in this process is having legal representation. This will determine whether you will lose or win your case. 

Role of an immigration lawyer

As a non-US citizen, it can be frightening when you get charged for an offense with a deportation penalty. It can be a dark and lonely process for you. It is your constitutional right to get advice from an immigration lawyer. So when appearing for your immigration hearing, go with an experienced immigration lawyer.

The representation of your case by an immigration lawyer can make or mar your case. Your case is most likely not going to get a good outcome without an immigration lawyer. When you involve an immigration lawyer various defenses can be pleaded on your behalf. 

The following are ways an immigration lawyer can help in your deportation defense:

1.Adjusting your immigration status

Failure to get your paperwork done makes you end up in an immigration court. Your immigration lawyer can raise the defense that you lawfully entered the US. This defense can make the judge adjust your status. The status will state you are lawfully present in the United States. Furthermore, if an application for a green card has been filed before the deportation process, it can also be used as a defense.

2.File the 1-751 petition

You might end up in an immigration court if you do not file the I-751 petition within the required time. This applies to those that obtained their immigration status through marriage. This petition is to remove the conditions on your permanent residency status.

Your immigration lawyer can file the I-751 petition on your behalf. Such a petition can be used by your immigration lawyer as a defense.

3.Right to criminal waivers

There are waivers for cancellation of your deportation due to a criminal past. Your immigration lawyer can advise you accordingly if you qualify for the waiver. An application can be made on your behalf to cancel the deportation charge based on the waiver. This application will be made based on the requirements of the law. This process can be complex. This is why it is important to involve an immigration lawyer to help with the process.

4.Application for asylum

Asylum is granted to enable applicants to have an immigration status in the US. This is granted based on the harm they suffered or might suffer back in their home country. It can be due to discrimination based on religion, ethnicity, and color. The US government grants them asylum to remain in the US. This asylum application can be used as a defense in your deportation hearing.

5.Apply for the prosecutor’s discretion on your behalf

The prosecutor has the discretion to end a deportation proceeding against you. Your lawyer, after evaluating your case, can decide to write to the Homeland security department on your behalf. This will be to request prosecutorial discretion to end the deportation lawsuit. Attached to the request letter is evidence to show why the case should no longer continue.

6.Application for U-visas

If you were instrumental in the investigation of a crime as a victim, you might be eligible for a U-visa. This visa authorizes you to work in the United States. Your deportation charge can be canceled if you get approval for your U-visa.

7.Violence Against Women Act (VAWA)

Women and children who experience abuse may be eligible under VAMA for a green card. These victims are dependent on the abusive person for their immigration. This is why the government protects the victims of abuse by granting them immigration status. Your immigration lawyer can help with the visa immigration application. Once the lawyer finalizes the application, it can be used as a defense in  your deportation hearing.

8.Inaccurate motions

Deportation proceedings can be terminated based on an incorrect charge. This means you will be given the notice to appear by the government for the deportation hearing. You must give this notice to your immigration lawyer.

Your immigration lawyer will check for discrepancies on the notice. Where there are discrepancies, a motion to terminate will be filed in court. This motion requests the court to end the proceedings based on an incorrect charge.

9.Application for voluntary departure instead of deportation

Your lawyer may think there are no deportation defense options for your type of case. In circumstances like this, you may be advised to request for voluntary departure. This is a better option instead of deportation. This option allows you to return to your home country and return to the US after obtaining a visa. The application for voluntary departure can be made by your immigration lawyer.

10.Legalization relief and registry relief

These reliefs are for those that have stayed in the United States as immigrants for a long time. They must have stayed in the US as undocumented non-citizens. This relief allows them to remain in the country. Your immigration lawyer can help you apply for Lawful Permanent Residency status. Your lawyer must also ensure you meet all the requirements stipulated for qualification.


Going to the deportation hearing by yourself can destroy your case. You would not want to have to deal with that guilt when you could have prevented it. That is why you cannot leave your case to chance. It is important in every step of your deportation case to involve an immigration lawyer. Make sure to consult the best immigration lawyer. 

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