If you have been convicted of a crime that is now triggering deportation, there is no defense against or relief from removal.
In some cases, immigration judges may have discretion to grant waivers of deportation for certain removable offenses. But even if they do, immigration authorities often decline to grant it in individual cases. That’s true even in cases where it may be argued that a specific conviction should not trigger deportation.
Most often, the best way to avoid deportation is to eliminate the conviction through post-conviction relief in criminal court. Even if other avenues are potentially available to you, you’ll increase your chances of success in avoiding deportation.
Is Post-Conviction Relief Possible for My Case?
Not every case qualifies for post-conviction relief. There are many factors that impact your chances of success, including but not limited to:
- The number and seriousness of the crime(s)
- The strength of the evidence
- Technical problems with the prosecution’s case
- Your immigration status in the United States
- Your sobriety
- The length of time you lived (lawfully) in the United States
- Time served
- Successful rehabilitation
- Voluntary submission to counseling
- Your reputation in the community
- Your family and business ties to the United States
- Your ability to get and maintain legal immigration status due to the relief
- The conditions in your home country
- The causes of the behavior, for example, if it was caused by trauma
- Any outstanding or potential arrest warrants
- The specific jurisdiction where the conviction occurred
Your case must have enough positive factors to encourage the prosecutor and court to favor granting post-conviction relief in order to avoid deportation.
There are many post-conviction vehicles available. Working with your attorney, you must determine which type of petition or motion that you qualify for and that will also provide the specific post-conviction relief you need.
Some examples of possible post-conviction vehicles include:
- Motions to withdraw a guilty plea
- Writ of Habeas corpus
- Writ of Coram Nobis
- Federal attacks: 2255 motion
You need to determine one or more groups of legal invalidity of either the conviction or the sentences that will also allow the court to reopen the conviction or sentence.
Post-Conviction Relief and Immigration: Fight for Your Right to Stay in the U.S.
This means a lot of research, legwork, and preparation, but it is a cause worth fighting for many who wish to remain in the United States.
At the Hubert Law Office, we will do everything in our power to help you avoid deportation. Reach out to us for an honest consultation about the possibility of success in your case. Call 718-522-4646 or fill out our contact form.