Withholding of Removal
Withholding of removal is one form of legal protection you may be able to seek under America’s immigration laws if you are afraid that upon return you would experience serious harm in your home country. If you are a refugee who is physically present in the United States, experienced Washington D.C. asylum lawyer Matthew Famiglietti may be able to petition on your behalf for the protection of withholding of removal and the protection under the Convention Against Torture as part of your asylum petition.What is Withholding of Removal?
Withholding of removal is one type of protection available to those afraid of returning to their country of origin. It forbids the United States government from removing you to a country where your freedom or life would be threatened because of your nationality, political opinion, religion, race, or membership in a specific social group. For instance, if you are Rohingya and you fear being returned to Myanmar, you may be able to apply for withholding of removal and other protections.Establishing You’re Entitled to this Protection
Generally, withholding of removal requirements are higher than those for asylum. To obtain this protection, we will need to prove it is more likely than not you would be persecuted or tortured in your country of origin if you were removed. However, unlike asylum, you can apply for withholding of removal at any time, even years after you first entered this country.
Furthermore, factors of your case that might otherwise prevent you from getting asylum may not prevent you from being granted withholding of removal. This is critical because there are discretionary factors that can affect whether you obtain asylum; a judge who believes you do not deserve asylum will not be able to deny you withholding of removal when you qualify.
Additionally, the benefit of applying for withholding of removal is that it is mandatory if you are eligible for it. This means the government official who determines your case is not able to determine whether you’re entitled to relief using subjective criteria. Rather, if our attorney can show you are eligible for withholding of removal, the government does not have discretion about whether to provide it. Once we make the requisite showing, it must grant you this form of relief.Proving You Are Eligible
To prove you deserve withholding of removal, we will need to show: (1) you are refugee and (2) there is a clear probability that you will be persecuted by the government or a group outside the control of the government if you returned to your country of origin. There is a presumption that you will be persecuted in the future in your country of origin when we can prove you've been persecuted in the past.
Clear probability is a high standard. Our lawyer will need to show it's more likely than not you'd be persecuted if returned to your country of origin because you have a protected characteristic. We will need to present the judge with extremely convincing evidence to make this showing.Mandatory Protection
Unlike asylum, you can apply for withholding of removal any time. Reasons that could stop you from getting asylum don't apply to withholding of removal. However, there are some limits that make it important to consult our experienced lawyer. For instance, if you persecuted others, you would be blocked from withholding of removal. Similarly, if you were convicted of severe crimes, you would be prevented from applying for withholding. If you were convicted of terrorism, you would not be able to obtain withholding.
In some cases, you can be eligible for withholding of removal even though you’re barred from applying for asylum, but we’ll need to present stronger evidence. Protection under the Convention Against Torture (CAT) is another mandatory form of relief. When applying for asylum, we would apply for both withholding of removal and CAT protection. It can be a little trickier to establish the correct elements under CAT than for withholding of removal, because we will need to show the harm with which you are threatened meets the definition of torture.Hire Our Washington D.C. Law Firm to Represent You
The stakes are high when you apply for withholding of removal. You should call our experienced Washington D.C. immigration law attorney Matthew T. Famiglietti who represents refugees in D.C., Virginia, and Maryland. Fill out our online form or call the Law Office of Matthew T. Famiglietti at (202) 669-5880.
Please note, there is a consultation fee for any calls related to this practice area.