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What are the consequences and procedure for voluntary departure?

New York, NY |

I am in removal proceedings. I came to USA legally but have been illegal for over a 1 year. I need to go back to my home country because of emergency. How do I go about requesting voluntary departure? Can I request this without a lawyer? and How long will it take to get it? What are the consequences of voluntary departure? I have no criminal record.

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Attorney answers 5


You could ask the immigration judge for voluntary departure, but it would be a much better idea to do it with the assistance of an immigration attorney. Best of luck.

(734) 369-3131. This communication does not establish and attorney-client relationship with the Law Office of Michael Carlin PLLC or any individual member of the office. Confidential information should not be sent through this form.


The procedures differ from different jurisdictions. Normally one requests Chief Counsel's office to agree to pre-hearing voluntary departure [they do not allow this in Chicago]. Otherwise, just ask the judge. You can get up to 4 months. If you leave as required, it will not be deemed a "removal". Any other bars to reentry will remain however, including the 3 and 10 year bars to admission for people who overstay their visas.

The above is intended only as general information, and does not constitute legal advice. You must speak with an attorney to discuss your individual case.


You will be barred for 10 years whether or not you take voluntary departure. Voluntary departure gives you the opportunity to get your business in order before returning home. At your next hearing date, ask for voluntary departure. Please consult and experienced immigration attorney before you make any life altering decisions.

Simone Coley, Bachand & Bachand; 855-422-2426. 189 State Street, Suite 100, Bridgeport, CT 06604.

Alexus Paul Sham

Alexus Paul Sham


It is important to consult an attorney to fully explain the requirements and consequences of voluntary departure


I agree with my colleagues.

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Carl Shusterman, Esq.
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(213) 394-4554 x0 Mr. Shusterman is a former INS Trial Attorney (1976-82) with over 35 years of immigration experience. His response to your question is general in nature, as not all the facts are known to him. You should retain an attorney experienced in immigration law to review all the facts in your case in order to receive advice specific to your case. Mr. Shusterman's statement above does not create an attorney/client relationship.


The procedure and qualifications depend on the status of the proceedings. You may always ask DHS/ICE for it. If the court date is too far away you need to write a letter to the Court explaining your desire. However, VD has drastic consequences if you fail to depart.... I would not make this decision without consulting with an attorney.

Att. number 917-885-2261 This advice does not create an attorney client relationship. No specific legal advice may be offered by the lawyer until a conflicts check is undertaken. Information sent through a web form or via email may not be treated as confidential. Please accept my apologies for spelling mistakes. Law Office of Alena Shautsova , New York Immigration Attorney Blog: