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Vickerstaff Law Office

Call For An Initial Consultation

Local: 502-442-2039
Toll-Free: 888-832-2944

Louisville, Kentucky, Immigration Lawyer

Louisville, Kentucky, Immigration Lawyer

Conditions to be eligible for withholding of removal

On Behalf of | Aug 15, 2023 | immigration law

With the intricacies of the U.S. immigration system, not everyone who fears persecution in their home countries may qualify for asylum status. What happens then if you are in this situation? Although it offers lesser benefits, “withholding of removal” or “deportation cancellation” can be a lifeline for you. But, of course, you must meet some eligibility requirements to qualify.

Residency duration eligibility

The length of time you have spent in the United States is crucial in determining if you are eligible for deportation cancellation. You must meet either of the two residency requirements:

  • You must have lived within the U.S. for a minimum of 10 years (prior to the initiation of immigration court proceedings)
  • You must hold the status of a lawful permanent resident for a period of at least five years

Note that a continuous residence of seven years post-admission is also a prerequisite. This is to ensure that you have established a meaningful and lasting connection with the United States.

In case you lack lawful permanent resident status, you still have a chance for withholding of removal. This is if you have spent a decade in the country and have a parent, child or sibling who is a U.S. citizen or permanent resident. This provision recognizes the importance of family ties and connections within the U.S.

Additional conditions

In addition, the individual must also meet specific conditions based on the following:

  • Moral character: Immigration officials take a closer look to see if you have been a responsible member of society, playing by the rules and showing respect to those around you.
  • Criminal record: If you have been involved in serious offenses known as aggravated felonies, it might affect your eligibility for this form of relief. Aggravated felonies are like a red flag because they are serious crimes that could potentially harm the community’s safety.
  • Security clearance: This criterion helps to protect the nation from potential risks and threats. You may get the green light if you do not pose any potential problem.

Withholding of removal or deportation cancellation may be harder to win than qualifying for asylum. But by meeting specific conditions, this process can still offer a lifeline to individuals who cannot go home because they fear persecution.