I-246 Stay of Deportation: Essential Steps for Application and Process

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Understanding I-246 Stay of Deportation

Imagine standing at a crossroads where one path leads to an uncertain future in a foreign land, and the other, guided by the I-246 Stay of Deportation, offers a moment of reprieve. This critical immigration form represents a lifeline for individuals facing removal from the United States. It serves as a request for temporary relief, allowing them to remain in the country while they manage their affairs or challenge their deportation. But how complex is the process, and what does one need to know to navigate it successfully?

Could it be that without proper guidance, the nuance and gravity of a Stay of Deportation are lost? In this context, securing professional legal aid is not merely advisable; it becomes essential. As we delve into the particulars of the I-246 form, we must recognize the value of skilled representation.

At Andrew T. Thomas, Attorneys at Law, we understand the gravity of deportation defense and the critical nature of staying the course in such proceedings. Our approach combines knowledge and dedicated representation, illuminating paths that many find themselves treading in darkness. Does the journey through immigration challenges demand the steady hand of a knowledgeable advocate, and could we aim to be that guiding force?

Understanding I-246 Stay of Deportation

Form I-246, also known as the Stay of Deportation or Removal, is a critical tool for individuals in the United States facing the imminent prospect of deportation. By filing this form, you can request a temporary suspension of the deportation process under specific circumstances.

Key Points to Know About I-246:

  • Discretionary Nature: The approval of a stay is at the discretion of the Homeland Security Secretary or their designee.

  • Non-Appealable: Decisions made on the I-246 are final and cannot be appealed.

  • Filing: When filling out the form:

    • The top section, marked “For Internal Use Only”, should be left blank.

    • The “A-File Number” section requires your Alien Registration Number, often found on your visa receipt.

It’s important to understand that the I-246 form is not a solution for long-term immigration status but a temporary measure for those who need additional time to resolve issues that would complicate their deportation. This may include pending legal matters or humanitarian reasons that warrant a delay of removal.

To apply for a stay of deportation or removal, accessing the correct form is the first step. You can obtain the Form I-246 from the official U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) website. Remember, submitting an I-246 form does not guarantee that a stay will be granted, and you should always consider consulting with an immigration attorney to assist you with this process.

Eligibility Criteria for I-246 Stay of Deportation

The path to a Stay of Deportation via Form I-246 is narrow, with eligibility confined to specific individuals under precise circumstances. If you’re standing on the brink of removal from the United States and the reality of that dawns on you, it’s essential to ascertain whether you qualify for filing a request for a Stay of Deportation.

Applicants must be within American borders at the time of submitting Form I-246. It’s pivotal to note that this request should be linked to a finalized order of removal, deportation, or exclusion. For those not under immigration detention, eligibility is possible.

When we consider the justification for a Stay of Deportation, solid evidence must be presented to substantiate any fear of harm upon return to one’s country of origin. We look for compelling cases where the urgency of their situations cannot be overstated. Applicants must demonstrate that their presence does not threaten public safety in the United States.

Here is a concise checklist of eligibility factors for an I-246 Stay of Deportation:

  • Current Location: Must be in the United States

  • Order of Removal: Finalized order in effect

  • Detention Status: Not detained by immigration authorities

  • Evidence of Fear: Must provide solid justification for fear of return

  • Urgency: Special, compelling reasons necessitating immediate attention

  • Public Risk: Non-existent risk to the U.S. community

  • Compliance with ICE: Adherence to any stipulated ICE conditions

  • Financial Support: Proof of self-sufficiency during the stay

  • Criminal History: No convictions of an aggravated felony

For example, individuals who might be eligible to apply for a stay include those awaiting completion of proceedings for legal residency status or those with immediate family members who have severe medical conditions necessitating the applicant’s presence in the U.S. Importantly, a criminal record, especially one involving an aggravated felony, can disqualify an individual from obtaining a stay.

Our understanding of Form I-246’s intricacies is crucial in navigating this turbulent process. While the situation is daunting, for many, this form represents a beacon of hope—a temporary lifeline allowing for reevaluating their unique circumstances.

Application Process for I-246

The journey to secure a stay of removal begins with a thorough understanding of navigating the I-246 application maze. Let’s dissect the steps, weigh the cost and time implications, and tackle the common hurdles head-on.

To embark on this path, begin by gathering the necessary documentation, from identity documents like passports and birth certificates to crucial pieces such as police reports or medical condition treatment verification. This paperwork paints a picture of your life situations, pivotal in influencing the outcome.

Complete Form I-246 meticulously, ensuring that every field reflects accurate information. Identifying data, reasons for requesting a stay, and any merits of your case, such as military service or strong family ties in the United States, should be included. When it comes to experiencing transformative life events or demonstrating rehabilitation, let the evidence speak volumes.

Hand-deliver the application to the local ICE Enforcement and Removal Operations (ERO) office. This personal submission lets you directly clarify questions with an ERO official.

Be prepared to present your case to an ERO supervisor. They have the discretion to grant or deny your application based on the totality of the circumstances presented. Knowing when and where to file is jurisdiction-specific within the U.S., so securing professional guidance can be critical. If you’re facing deportation, being apprised of The Deportation Process is necessary.

Costs and Processing Time

The fee for filing Form I-246 is mandatory, and the exact amount can fluctuate with policy changes. This non-refundable financial commitment is just an initial stride in what could be a protracted process.

Processing times can be unpredictable, as they depend on various factors, including the office’s caseload and the complexity of your case. To curtail potential delays, submit a complete file and adhere to any indicated procedures.

Common Challenges and How to Overcome Them

Patience is often tested when faced with delays or possible rejections in the immigration process. Common challenges include the potential lack of comprehensive documentation or misinterpreting your legal situation, especially when dealing with immigration customs enforcement or appearing before an immigration judge.

To triumph over these obstacles, ensure every piece of documentation is collected methodically, and any legal avenues like immigration appeals or motions to reopen are evaluated promptly. Engage a proficient immigration lawyer early on; their experience could make a significant difference in understanding the nuances of immigration law and successfully managing the I-246 form.

In our march towards securing a stay of removal, knowledge, readiness, and precision are our allies. With concrete documentation and a clear-eyed approach to the process, we step forward, hopeful yet prepared for the path that lies ahead.

Legal Representation and Its Benefits

Legal complexities often feel like a labyrinth, but with the right guide, even the most intricate paths can be navigated precisely. We understand that the stakes are impossibly high when a family member or loved one is facing deportation or other immigration judge issues.

An immigration lawyer is not just a representative; they are a beacon of hope in times of uncertainty. With an experienced attorney, the chances to explore all legal avenues increase, ensuring no stone is left unturned. They can address immigration judge issues, respond to written notices, and ensure actions are taken within the specified period.

Immigration cases are about more than just laws; they are about lives, dreams, and families. Our attorneys collect and organize essential documentation, safeguard identity documents, assist with employment authorization, and firmly stand by you through each step of the process, including removal proceedings.

With an adept lawyer, prosecutorial discretion may be leveraged, which can significantly alter the prognosis of your case.

By engaging legal counsel, you tap into:

  1. Extensive knowledge of immigration law.
  2. A thorough evaluation of your situation.
  3. Tailored strategies that can prevent or delay deportation.
  4. Support with filings such as Form I-246, ensuring accuracy and timeliness.

Bear in mind, though, that filing Form I-246 does not guarantee a halt in deportation; it is a request for prosecutorial discretion. Our service encompasses representing clients who might qualify for Immigration and Customs Enforcement Orders of Supervision, which presents an alternative to detention for certain individuals under supervision.

As attorneys at Andrew T. Thomas, Attorneys at Law, we work tirelessly, infuse our work with integrity, and keep you, the client, at the forefront of our campaign for justice. We lend an anonymous hand to victims, weaving through the fabric of law with commitment and passion. Rest assured, while you may feel anonymous in a vast and daunting system, in our care, your case will always be singular and paramount.


In the intricate tapestry of immigration law, a stay of deportation is a pivotal thread, offering a temporary reprieve for those facing a removal order. The application for a stay, notably through Form I-246, allows individuals to pause their deportation proceedings, providing a crucial window to explore legal avenues that might solidify their immigration status in the United States.

It is essential to recognize that this process hinges on prosecutorial discretion; approval is not guaranteed and can be subject to revocation. Therefore, it is paramount that applications are meticulously prepared and underscore compelling reasons to merit a stay.

Amidst the procedural complexities and alarming events that many immigrants face, the role of experienced legal counsel cannot be understated. At Andrew T. Thomas, Attorneys at Law, we offer an informed partnership, guiding our clients through the nuanced pathways of immigration proceedings. Our involvement seeks to elevate the prospect of achieving a favorable outcome.

As we navigate the journey with you, we encourage those facing such challenges to contact us. Through collaborative engagement, one can best assert their right to remain in the country and counter the threat of removal. For individuals and families whose futures hinge on these legal interventions, receiving written notice and seeking timely legal advice are crucial. We beckon you to contact our office for a comprehensive consultation. Together, we strive to uphold the tenets of justice and the continuity of your American dream.