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Mevorah Law Offices LLC
DuPage County Attorneys


900 E. Roosevelt Road, Lombard, IL 60148

Phone: 630-932-9100


134 N. Bloomingdale Road, Bloomingdale, IL 60108

Phone: 630-529-4761


105 W. Madison Street, Suite 2200, Chicago, IL 60602

Phone: 630-932-9100


1730 Park Street, Suite 202, Naperville, IL 60563

Phone: 630-420-1000
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Exceptional & Extremely Unusual HardshipIf you or someone you love winds up in immigration removal proceedings, there are only a few select ways where it might be possible to avoid that eventuality. One of those is called cancellation of removal. However, unless you are a lawful permanent resident (LPR, or a holder of a ‘green card’), cancellation can be extremely difficult to win. You must be able to prove that your removal would pose an ‘exceptional and extremely unusual hardship,’ which is an extremely high standard to meet.

How Will Your Removal Affect U.S. Citizen Family?

To be blunt, United States Citizenship & Immigration Services (USCIS) cares very little about the inconvenience to an undocumented or non-LPR immigrant. What is more relevant is the potential difficulty to any U.S. citizen family members you may have. For LPRs, the standard is to show that your removal would cause ‘extreme’ hardship to a U.S. citizen spouse or children. For non-LPRs, the standard is raised to “exceptional and extremely unusual.”

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DuPage County immigration attorneys, Visa Waiver ProgramWhile efforts are not always successful, the United States does its best to adapt its immigration policies and requirements to reflect world events. It was in this spirit that the Visa Waiver Program Improvement and Terrorist Travel Prevention Act was passed into law as part of an omnibus bill in December 2015. The Act has created both approval and controversy; still, it is imperative that those planning immigration or travel to the United States be aware of its tenets.

The Act

The Act, signed into law by President Obama on December 18, 2015, went into effect immediately. The main provision of the act makes changes to the Visa Waiver Program (VWP) dealing with those who have spent time in, or are citizens of, countries designated as “of concern” or as terrorism supporters in the past. Therefore, people who have spent time in countries such as Iran, Syria or Iraq, at any time since March 2011, are barred under this Act from using the VWP, regardless of citizenship. A British citizen, for example, could be refused entry to the U.S. if he or she attempted to travel on the VWP after visiting Syria the previous year. It is possible to obtain a waiver; however, only specific classes are able to apply for them, such as workers at law enforcement agencies or those dealing with national security.

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Deferred Action for child, Illinois immigration, child immigrant, legal immigration, Illegal immigrationWhile immigration advocates are pressing President Obama to halt all deportations until an immigration reform bill can be passed, many immigrants that do not have legal status already have an opportunity to receive deferred status in the United States through the Deferred Action for Child Arrivals (DACA) remedy. President Obama established this rule two years ago, and it allows immigrants who arrived in the United States as children to apply for a two-year deportation protected status, in addition to a work permit.

Obtaining deferred action does not bring about permanent residency or citizenship. It simply stops immigration authorities from deporting an individual who would otherwise be removable. Still, it can serve as an important tool if you or someone you know would like to stay legally in the United States and have the opportunity to work. Below is a brief explanation on who may apply for deferred action status.

Who Can Apply?

In accordance with the guidelines set forth by U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services, an immigrant can apply for deferred status if he or she was younger than 31 years old on June 15, 2012, was younger than age 16 when he or she arrived in the United States to live, and lived in the United States since June 15, 2007. The individual also had to have been physically present in the U.S. on June 15, 2012, and he or she must be in the United States during the application process.


In addition to the above criteria, there are some limitations on the types of people that can apply as well. If the person applying for deferment has been convicted of a felony or certain types of ‘significant misdemeanors,’ he or she may not be eligible to apply.

‘Significant misdemeanor’ is not a term that is typically used in immigration law. USCIS defines a significant misdemeanor as one for which the maximum term of imprisonment is less than a year, but greater than five days and either 1) was a domestic violence, burglary, use of firearm, drug trafficking or DUI offense, or 2) was an offense in which the individual was sentenced to more than 90 days in custody. If either of these two categories is fulfilled, then that person cannot apply for the deferral.

Remember that DACA is still a relatively new policy in a time in which immigration law is becoming more and more open to change. While USCIS has stated that after the two-year time limit has passed individuals can renew for another two years, no one yet knows what effect immigration reform will have on this policy.

If you or someone you know in Illinois would like to know more information about DACA or other options for legally residing and working in the United States, contact Mevorah Law Offices LLC today.

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