November 25, 2020

What you need to know about voluntary departure

There are a lot of negative consequences that accompany being deported. To avoid some of those consequences, one may agree to a voluntary departure. Here are a few things immigrants currently residing in Michigan need to know before applying for this type of relief from removal.

If one goes through a deportation hearing and ends up with a formal removal order, some of the consequences that typically accompany such an order include fines and a bar to readmission — either temporary or permanent. If an immigrant chooses to voluntarily depart, he or she is given 60 to 120 days to leave on his or her own. This individual will not have to pay the typical fines but will have to pay a departure bond. Finally, he or she may be able to reenter the country sooner than someone who has been deported; though, reentry may be a struggle if one was here unlawfully.

After agreeing to voluntary departure, the relief may be terminated if one’s case is reviewed and removal is ordered; if one overstays the allowed departure period; if one fails to post a departure bond. If an individual’s case is not overturned, and the voluntary departure is allowed to stand but he or she fails to leave, fines up to $5,000 may be ordered, and the individual may be ineligible for any other type of immigration relief for 10 years.

Voluntary departure has its advantages, but it is not without its disadvantages. Immigrants currently residing in Michigan who are facing deportation can turn to legal counsel to learn more about voluntary departure so they can determine if it makes sense for them. An experienced immigration attorney may be able to help fight the deportation or assist one in applying for this or other forms of removal relief.