Cancellation of Removal for Lawful Permanent Residents

Cancellation of removal is a form of discretionary relief available to all lawful permanent residents (LPRs) who are in removal proceedings.  Removal may be cancelled if the application meets the following four conditions:

1.  The applicant has been an LPR for at least five years;

2.  The applicant has resided continuously in the US for seven years after having been admitted in any status;

3.  The applicant has not been convicted of an aggravated felony; and

4.  The applicant has not previously received a grant of cancellation or suspension of deportation.

Cancellation of removal is only available in immigration court before a judge.  Also, because this form of relief is discretionary, the application must demonstrate to the judge why he should exercise his discretion in favor of the applicant.

Positive factors include family ties in the US, residence of long duration in the US, evidence of hardship to the applicant and family if removal occurs, service in the US military, employment history, business and property ties, evidence of value and service to the community, proof of genuine rehabilitation if applicant has a criminal record and any other evidence of applicant’s good character.

Negative factors include the nature and underlying circumstances of the grounds of removal, the presence of additional immigration violations, the existence of a criminal record and any other evidence of bad character or undesirability.

If the judge grants the applicant’s request for cancellation of removal, then the judge is effectively forgiving the basis of the removal proceeding and the application will retain his or her permanent residency and can remain in the US.  If the judge denies the applicant’s request for cancellation, he will enter an order of removal and the applicant will be removed from the US and will lose his or her LPR status.

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  1. Written by Mercedes Mondragon
    on August 19, 2009 at 8:50 pm

    As I understand it ia permanent resident may be eligible for a cancellation of removal for a crime committed before 1996 would he not be eligible for relief if he pled guilty to a felony after 1996?

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