Can my fiance become a legal resident if he tried to enter illegally? 3 Answers as of May 13, 2011

My Fiancée attempted to enter the US three times illegally when he was only 15 and 16 years old. He was detained all three times and sent back to Mexico by US officials, although he claims that he received support from a child protection agency. He entered the US successfully but illegally after the 4th attempt. He has been in the United States since he was 12, but went back to visit his family due to the loss of his biological mother. Due to emotional hardship, he decided to come back immediately at age 15, almost 16. He spent his B-Day attempting to enter the US. The time frame of these events took place in a period of under 3 months. Will this affect his case in trying to legalize him into the United States? I am a US citizen and we are planning on getting married very soon.

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Pacifica Legal Services
Pacifica Legal Services | Floyd Fernandez
Under section 212a (9)(C)(i) of the Immigration Act (INA), your fiancee is ineligible to even petition for permission to apply for legal residence, except under extreme hardship to you, which will be very difficult to prove. Otherwise, he has to leave the country and wait for at least ten years, and since he has been detained at least three times and then came successfully on a fourth attempt, it is possible that he will be permanently ineligible. There is a specialty kind of appeal, called 'nunc pro tunc', that is combined with a special permission application, which is also allowed under section 212i, but it is difficult to do, and he would have to appear at the port of entry of Juarez and appear at an interview at the consulate, and it may not be successful. On the other hand, he does have eligibility, if he has been in the USA for more than 10 straight years, to qualify under cancellation of removal, if there is extreme hardship to you (after you're married) or any other citizen of the USA or legal resident if he is removed. For more information, please feel free to call or e-mail me and set up an appointment for a phone or in-person consultation.
Answer Applies to: California
Replied: 5/13/2011
Law Office of Immigration & International Trade Law
Law Office of Immigration & International Trade Law | Linda Liang
You need to work with an immigration lawyer. Don't try to work this out on your own because your fiance's case is not as simple as you think.
Answer Applies to: Florida
Replied: 5/10/2011
Law Office of Christine Troy
Law Office of Christine Troy | Christine Troy
I wish you the best of luck. There are a lot of questions I would have before I could answer your question so I am going to recommend that you schedule an appointment with a competent immigration attorney who specializes in deportation/removal issues in your area.
Answer Applies to: California
Replied: 5/10/2011
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