How To Get a Stay of Deportation in Immigration Court

How To Get a Stay of Deportation in Immigration Court

If you have received a deportation order from an immigration judge, you may be able to get a stay of deportation to temporarily postpone your removal from the United States. A stay of deportation gives you more time to file appeals or reopen your immigration case.

What is a Stay of Deportation?

A stay of deportation is basically an order telling the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) not to deport you for a certain period of time. It pauses the deportation order so you aren’t forced to leave the country right away (see [1]).

There are a few different types of stays:

  • Automatic Stay: This happens automatically if you file certain appeals or motions. For example, if you appeal your case to the Board of Immigration Appeals (BIA) within 30 days.
  • Discretionary Stay: You have to request this type of stay, and it’s up to the immigration judge or BIA to decide whether to grant it. This gives them discretion.
  • Administrative Stay: You can request this type of stay directly from Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE). But it’s very hard to get.

Who Can Get a Stay of Deportation?

You may be able to get a stay of deportation if:

  • You’ve been ordered deported or removed from the U.S. by an immigration judge
  • You have filed or want to file an appeal or motion to reopen/reconsider your immigration case
  • You fear persecution, torture, or even death if deported to your home country

Certain types of cases also often qualify for automatic stays, like:

  • Asylum cases
  • Withholding of removal cases
  • Convention Against Torture (CAT) cases
  • Violence Against Women Act (VAWA) cases

How to Request a Stay of Deportation

If you want to get a discretionary stay or administrative stay, you’ll need to make a request. Here are the steps:

  1. Fill out Form I-246 and submit it to the ICE office handling your case. This is the official stay request form.
  2. Also submit documentation supporting your reasons for requesting a stay. For example, proof of medical conditions, arrests, convictions, etc.
  3. Pay the $155 filing fee.
  4. Attend an in-person appointment at the ICE office to submit your stay request. They’ll review it and decide whether to grant your stay.

Discretionary stays can also be requested directly from the immigration judge or BIA either in writing or orally at a hearing (see [10]).

How to File an Appeal to Get an Automatic Stay

Filing certain appeals can trigger an automatic stay. For example, if you appeal your deportation order to the BIA within 30 days, you automatically get a stay while your appeal is pending (see [2]).

To file your appeal, you’ll need to:

  1. Complete Form EOIR-26 (Notice of Appeal)
  2. File the appeal notice with the BIA within 30 days of your deportation order
  3. Include the appropriate filing fee

This will trigger an automatic stay, stopping your deportation until the BIA decides your appeal. Other types of appeals, like federal court appeals, can also sometimes lead to automatic stays.

How Long Does a Stay of Deportation Last?

How long your deportation is postponed depends on the type of stay:

  • Automatic Stay: Remains in effect as long as the related appeal/motion is pending
  • Discretionary Stay: Usually lasts for a specific period set by the judge, often 6 months or 1 year
  • Administrative Stay: Typically lasts for 1 year maximum, then you must file for renewal

So in most cases, a stay of deportation is only temporary. It buys you more time while you get other immigration matters resolved, but does not stop deportation forever.

What If My Stay Request is Denied?

If immigration officials deny your stay request, you may be able to ask again or file an appeal. But there are no guarantees. Once your stay expires or request is denied, DHS/ICE can deport you at any time.

As soon as that happens, your options become very limited. Trying to illegally re-enter the U.S. after deportation carries severe consequences. Your best bet is usually to consult with an immigration attorney to explore any last legal options before deportation occurs.

Getting Expert Help

Trying to get a stay of deportation without an attorney is extremely difficult. Rules and paperwork are complicated. That’s why connecting with a good immigration lawyer is so important.

They can help you file the right forms correctly, submit persuasive stay requests, and walk you through the appeals process. Having an expert on your side boosts your odds of getting a stay granted tremendously.

If you or someone you know needs help getting a stay of deportation, check out these useful legal resources:

They let you search for qualified lawyers in your state who handle deportation defense and stays of removal. Contact them for a consultation right away to protect your rights.

With an attorney’s guidance, you can make sure you take the necessary legal steps to keep your deportation on hold. This critical time could make it possible to get your case reopened or win your immigration appeals.

Don’t wait to reach out for help. The sooner you connect with an attorney, the better when you’re facing deportation.