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Report: Hundreds of Thousands of Immigrants May Be Eligible for Legal Status

If you feel that current U.S. immigration policy is to deport first and ask questions later, you are not alone. The reality, though, is that immigrants and their families often have legal options that are not clear until they talk with an immigration attorney.

A new report shows that hundreds of thousands of undocumented immigrants may be able to remain in the country legally - if only they learn about their legal options.

A statistical review conducted by Catholic Legal Immigration Network (CLINIC) showed that up to 600,000 of 4 million undocumented immigrants in seven U.S. states had grounds to seek legal status.

Legal status can be granted based on multiple factors, including family ties to U.S. citizens and fear of persecution in an immigrant's homeland.

The findings suggest that nationwide the percentage of undocumented immigrants who are eligible for legal status is very high, and to stay in the United States legally, many immigrants just need to seek help from an experienced immigration lawyer.

Legal Immigration: Family-Based, Employment-Based and Asylum-Based

These are three legal status options for immigrants and their families in Arizona, but many people do not understand how to get the legal immigration process started. Again, an experienced immigration lawyer can help in these matters.

Important to understand:

  • Petitions for green cards are family-based and employment-based.
  • When you apply for asylum, you must provide evidence that shows past persecution or a well-founded fear of persecution in your homeland.

While immigration officials may be quick to deport and ask questions later, you or your family member may still be able to delay removal proceedings if your case is pending.

What ICE Says

Deportation can be delayed if an immigrant has a pending application for legal status or a pending appeal.

Additionally, a spokesperson for ICE had this to say: "Before carrying out a removal, U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement conducts a thorough review of each case to determine whether there are any reasons the removal order issued by the immigration court should not be executed at that time."

Talk to an immigration attorney as soon as possible.

Because U.S. immigration law is so complex, you should never try to take care of an immigration issue on your own. Get help from an immigration lawyer.

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