Understanding Cancellation of Removal

A person facing removal (deportation) from the United States may have the right to cancel that removal. Canceling removal is a form of discretionary relief by stopping or canceling the removal orders on the person. 

A cancellation of removal is beneficial in that it gives you residency status without fear of removal. To receive this legal remedy, you must make sure that you and your relatives have had a long physical presence and substantial ties with the US, have not committed certain crimes, and that the removal would create a hardship for the other members of the family.

A cancellation of removal is not available to all individuals facing removal. In contrast to non-lawful permanent residents, different eligibility standards are applied to lawful permanent residents (LPRs). A person granted withdrawal cancellation may often qualify for permanent US residency. 

Requirements for Cancellation of Removal

LPRs facing removal are eligible to cancel the removal if the person: 

  • Has been a lawful permanent resident for at least 5 years
  • Has resided in the US for at least 7 years after their legal admission to the country
  • Has never been convicted of an “aggravated felony”

Cancellation of removal is only available for non-permanent residents facing removal if the person: 

  • Has been physically present or had an accrued presence in the US for a continuous period of no fewer than 10 years before the Notice to Appear was served
  • Has shown that they are a person of “good moral character” during those 10 years 
  • Has never been convicted of certain crimes or offenses as defined by the statute
  • Is able to show that their Qualifying Relative(s) would suffer “exceptional and extreme, unusual hardship” if the person is removed from the U.S. 

How to Prove that You’re Eligible for a Cancellation of Removal

1) Being physically present in the country for 10 years – Continuous physical presence can be proven by submitting documents such as lease agreements, ownership forms, mortgage contracts, house deeds, employment pay stubs, credit card bills for financial records or tax returns, utility bills, and car insurance records. Any document proving your physical presence history is helpful.

2) Good moral character – It is difficult to document good moral character. You can, however, have several people write a letter of recommendation for you attesting to your character. This can include employers, members of the church, family, neighbors, and friends. The letters must include how many years they’ve known you.

3) Criminal history – Get a criminal record check and report from the FBI or sheriff’s office. If you have certain crimes on your record, you could be ineligible for cancellation.

4) Extreme hardship – You must prove that if you are deported, a lawful resident or US citizen related to you will suffer extreme hardship. This can be demonstrated by proving the difficulty of the resident’s adjustment to the US, the financial support you provide to the resident, and/or any medical or care duties you provide.

Get Legal Assistance

For several people, immigration laws can sometimes be hard to understand. Eligibility to cancel removal, as you can see, depends on a number of different factors. If you’re facing removal, it’s best to consult with an experienced US immigration attorney. Contact our team at (956) 412-0707 to determine how we can assist you.

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Villegas Law Office, PLLC

Ana Maria Villegas, our principal attorney, understands the stress and uncertainty that often accompanies an immigration case. She has experienced firsthand the feeling of putting your future hopes and dreams into the government’s hands. When you call our office for help, you will connect with an attorney who understands what you are going through on a personal level. U.S. immigration law is one of the most extensive and difficult areas of law to navigate. We limit our practice exclusively to immigration law, allowing us to continuously build upon our extensive knowledge and experience in that area. As our client, you can rest assured that you have a strong, focused legal team working on your side.

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