This guide should provide assistance for aliens in immigration court and the possibilities of requesting voluntary departure.
Voluntary departure is the lowest level form of relief from removal for individuals with no other avenue of relief. The departure of an alien from the United States without an order of removal. The departure may or may not have been preceded by a hearing before an immigration judge. An alien allowed to voluntarily depart concedes removability.
The advantage of voluntary departure is that no formal removal order will be entered against the individual, which means that such a person may be able to return to the United States sooner.
The requirements for applying for voluntary departure depend on whether you apply for it before or after the master calendar hearing.
To apply for voluntary departure before, or at the master calendar hearing, an individual must:
Waive and withdraw all other requests for relief;
Concede removablility from the United States;
Waive appeal of all issues; and
Not have been convicted of an aggravated felony and must not be a security risk.
To apply for voluntary departure at the conclusion of removal proceedings, an individual must:
Show that physical presence in the United States for one (1) year prior to the date the Notice to Appear was issued;
Show good moral character for five (5) years prior to application for voluntary departure;
Present a valid passport or other travel document that shows lawful entry into your country;
Show clear and convincing evidence of intent, and financial ability, to leave the United States; and
Pay a bond not less than $500 set by the Immigration Judge.
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