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Immigration matter being considered by Supreme Court

There is no question that individuals who qualify for deferred action were pleased when the program was announced. While some undocumented immigrants residing in South Florida have been able to take advantage of the benefits this program provides qualified individuals, there are many others still living in fear of deportation. Some of these individuals may have started the process of obtaining a green card but as a result of the length of time it has taken to process their visa request, have “aged out,” and been forced to return to the country where they were born. In some cases these individuals may not have been in those countries since they were very young children.

Aging out occurs when the child of an immigrant who, as a derivative beneficiary is waiting for his or her parent to receive green card, turns 21 before the card is issued. When this happens, the child could face deportation. If deported, these individuals usually must wait a certain amount of time before they can return to the United States. If they do make it back, they usually have to wait even longer for a green card and may even find that they do not qualify.

A portion of the Child Status Protection Act of 2002 was supposed to address this issue. Because of the way it is interpreted however, some young people are being forced to start the visa process over at the age of 21. A case regarding the matter is currently being considered by the U.S. Supreme Court. The issue in Mayorkas v. Cuellar de Osorio is whether individuals, who age out before their parents receive a green card, should have to start over.

Depending on the court’s decision, many individuals who reside in the Miami area could be impacted. If they have not already sought the assistance of an immigration lawyer, the resolution of this case may prompt a visit.

Source: Opposing Views, “Supreme Court Considers Visa Leniency For 'Aged Out' Children Of Immigrants,” Allison Geller, Jan. 20, 2014

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