USCIS expedites the deportation process
U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) will begin to refer directly to immigration judges those immigrants who have been denied requests for adjustment of status.
While the country was glued to the TV watching the hearing of Judge Brett Kavanaugh, the government approved a new mechanism to accelerate the process of deportation for immigrants.
U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) published the maneuver at the beginning of the summer through a guidelines memo for officials when issuing the so-called "Notice to Appear" (NTA).
According to Mondaq, a platform of assistance and legal information, an NTA "is essentially a notification to a foreign national in the U.S. that the government feels he or she is 'removable' (deportable), and that their name and file have been referred to the immigration courts for a removal hearing before a judge."
This implies that even if someone makes a small mistake — overlooking documents or something similar — that person's status could be immediately denied and they will enter the deportation procedure immediately.
As PhilStar explained, "in the past, if a person filed a petition, application or other requests, and an officer believed additional documentation or information was required, the person would typically be served with a request for evidence (RFE), giving that person approximately 87 days to cure the deficiency, by providing the documents or further information."
With the new procedure, officers could "skip or dispense with an RFE and deny the case outright," the report continues.
"With this notice to appear the immigrant is being put in a deportation process and will have to defend his case in front of a judge," immigration lawyer Fernando Romo told EFE.
While USCIS clarified that the new guidelines for issuing NTAs will not be applied to petitions based on employment or humanitarian petitions, it may deny status if a person "has no legal basis for the benefit/request sought, or submits a request for a benefit or relief under a program that has been terminated,” and if it simply considers that there is not "enough initial evidence.”
The consequences could be serious for the many immigrants who have worked and lived in the United States for years since a USCIS denial can mean the person is subject to removal procedures.