Though immigration is an issue that the entire country seems to think about on a regular basis, there are some issues that are geographically more relevant to certain parts of the nation, than others. For example, the recent changes regarding how the United States deals with its relationship with Cuba, arguably impacts south Florida more than it does other parts of the country.
The movement to normalize relations with Cuba has left some Cubans living in the Miami area, unsure of their futures. Some are afraid that they will be deported to their home country. According to immigration authorities, at total of 34,525 Cubans are currently facing final orders of deportation. In addition, there are 2,264 removal cases pending in immigration court. These fears are despite the fact that officials in the U.S. have not made any changes to the policies currently in place.
The reasons behind those orders of deportation vary but many include criminal convictions. Some face deportation after being caught entering the country without permission.
Immigration matters are confusing to most and while there is no indication that the U.S.’s deportation policy toward Cubans will change any time soon, it still could be a good idea for Cuban immigrants who are not citizens to consult an immigration lawyer. This is because there may be provisions under the current law that could provide a path to citizenship. This is particularly a good idea for those who are exiles in deportation proceedings or those who have final orders of expulsion.
Source: The Miami Herald, “In Miami, deportation fears rise as U.S. revives relations with Havana,” Nora Gámez Torres and Alfonso Chardy, Jan. 3, 2015