To be eligible for the relief of cancellation of removal, an applicant must prove:
1- That the applicant has ten years presence in the U.S.; (seven years for legal permanent resident) the ten years count stops at the time the immigration Notice to Appear, NTA, is issued or when a conviction is final;
2- That the applicant has a qualified relative in the U.S.; a qualified relative is a U.S. citizen or legal permanent resident father/mother, spouse, or son/daughter;
3- That the applicant is a person of good moral character; NO CRIMINAL RECORD; must have taxes for the last ten years. Taxes must be prepared on annual basis, on time, and not when the immigration proceedings starts. Taxes must not have additional distant family members, who live overseas, as dependents.
4- That the applicant family suffers extreme and unusual hardship if the applicant is deported.
All of the above requirements must be met. The immigration judge has a wide discretion to approve or deny your application
To apply for Cancellation of Removal, COR, an applicant must be in immigration proceeding. An applicant ends up in immigration proceeding in many different ways. Recently, most applicants end up in immigration court when they are arrested for traffic violation, i.e. driving without a driver license. While the applicant is in county jail, if the applicant is illegal, the sheriff informs the Immigration and Custom Enforcement, ICE, who place a detainer on the applicant. A detainer is an ICE hold on the applicant. Once the applicant pays the county bond for the criminal charges, the Sheriff must either release the applicant or transfer him/her to ICE custody. The Sheriff should not keep the applicant more than 48 hours after the county bond is posted. When the applicant is in ICE custody, ICE issues NTA charging the client with the immigration violation. ICE may release the applicant or set a bond. Then at the first court appearance, the applicant asks for the relief of COR.