RETURN TO THE US FOR INDIVIDUALS SUBJECT TO A 5 OR 10-YEAR BAR
If you who have been removed from the United States, you are barred from returning to the United States until you have stayed outside the U.S. for a specific period of time:
- You are barred for a period of 5 years if you were removed through expedited removal proceedings, which are typically conducted upon your arrival to the United States;
- You are barred for a period of 10 years if you were ordered removed after a removal hearing or you departed the United States while you had an order of removal outstanding against you; or
- You are barred for a period of 20 years if you have been removed 2 or more times.
The good news is that you may be eligible to return to the United States sooner. You may file a Form I-212, Application for Permission to Reapply for Admission into the United States After Deportation or Removal (i.e. Form I-212, I-212 waiver, or permission to reapply) if you want to return to the United States before staying outside the United States for the required period of time. This is essentially asking the United States Government to allow you to return to the United States sooner rather than later.
Whether you should be granted permission to reapply for admission after deportation or removal is a discretionary decision. USCIS has broad discretion to grant or deny a Form I-212. This means USCIS will weigh the positive and negative factors to determine whether your request should be granted. Positive factors weighing in favor of granting your request to return to the United States early include, but our not limited to, the following:
- The reason why you were deported or removed from the United States;
- The recency of your deportation or removal;
- Your length of residence in the United States and immigration status during that period of residence;
- Your family ties to the United States;
- Evidence of your good moral character;
- Your respect for law and order;
- Evidence of your reform and rehabilitation, especially if you have a criminal record;
- Hardship to your family members who are lawful permanent residents (i.e. green card holders) and United States citizens;
- Whether you are the beneficiary of an approved immigrant or nonimmigrant visa petition;
- Your eligibility for a waiver of any other inadmissibility grounds that may be present; and
- A lack of significant undesirable or negative factors.
Negative factors weighing against granting your request to return to the United States include, but our not limited to, the following:
- Your criminal history as including involvement in any continuing unlawful activity;
- Your repeated violations of immigration laws or your willful disregard of other laws;
- Your likelihood of becoming a public charge if allowed to return to the United States;
- You poor physical or mental condition especially as it relates your likelihood to become a public charge;
- Lack of any close family ties to the United States;
- Your family members who are lawful permanent residents (i.e. green cards holders) or United States citizens are not or would not experience any hardship;
- Your entry into prior marriages believed to have been entered into to obtain an immigration benefit (i.e. marriage fraud);
- Your unauthorized employment in the United States; and
- Any other grounds of inadmissibility into the United States.
You may be able to file a Form I-212 before departing the United States. You are able to file a provisional Form I-212 if you will also be applying for a provisional unlawful presence waiver (i.e. Stateside Waiver or I-601A Waiver) and pursuing an immigrant visa through consular processing.