Can a Deported Immigrant Get Back Into the U.S.?

Typically, once an immigrant is expelled from America, he is not allowed back into the country for any reason before a specific amount of time has passed, but in some instances he will be allowed to come back early if he successfully completes the Hardship Waiver process.

What is a Hardship Waiver?
A hardship waiver is a program that provides an exception for deported immigrants who can demonstrate that deportation is causing or will cause extreme hardship on the part of the immigrant’s family.

Are the Waivers Difficult to Get?
Yes. The law sets up many roadblocks to ensure that only those who are truly needy and deserving of the waivers obtain them and are allowed back into the U.S.

What is the Timeframe?
The length of time a deported immigrant must remain out of the U.S. depends on why he was deported. For example, some crimes warrant a lifetime deportation. Other crimes, such as aggravated crimes, will place a 20-year ban on returning to the U.S. Other situations such as being caught without proper documentation only require a five or 10-year ban.

Video: President Obama talks about Immigration Reform

Does the Waiver Erase that Time?
Yes. If a waiver is approved, it can remove part or all of the time requirements. For example, if an immigrant is banned for an offense that carries a 20-year no return to the U.S. policy, a successful ban will allow the immigrant to return despite that restriction.

What are the Requirements?
To receive a waiver you must prove that you have a U.S. relative who is suffering a hardship because of your inability to return to the country. Hardships can include financial and emotional reasons. The authorities will consider how long you were in the U.S. before you were deported, why it happened, and what specific ways your relative will suffer if you are not allowed to return to the United States.

Related: Can you be deported for a criminal conviction with a Green Card?

Final thoughts: An immigration attorney is the best person to advise you about your individual case if you have been deported or had a loved one deported and it is creating a hardship.

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