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Will I Get Deported if My Citizenship Application is Denied?

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You may wonder if you will be deported if your application is denied. In this blog, we will review your options and help you understand the impact of your citizenship application being denied.

Becoming a United States citizen is a daunting task with relentless steps, fees, and hoops to jump through. If all goes right, you are rewarded with citizenship to one of the best countries in the world, the land of opportunity. However, what happens if everything doesn’t go right? What happens if you receive a notice of intent to deny? How will a denial of your application affect you, your family and your ability to stay in the United States?

What Happens if My Citizenship Application is Denied?

It may feel like everything is crashing down on you if you receive a notice of intent to deny or your application is outright denied. What should you do?

Usually, one of two things will happen before the United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) outright denies an application.

The USCIS may send you a notice of intent to deny (NOID), which means they may have found evidence while processing your application that leads them to believe you should not have had permanent resident status in the first place. USCIS gives you 30 days to respond to a NOID.

The more preferable of the two is a request for evidence (RFE). This means that the USCIS intends to approve your status as long as the requested information is satisfied or any mistakes on the citizenship application are corrected. USCIS gives you 90 days to respond to an RFE.

If your citizenship application is denied, your status will return to what it was before you began the application process. This can leave some people in a vulnerable state depending on their residency conditions in the United States before they started the application process.

If you are a green card holder, also known as a Permanent Resident Card, your status will revert to that of a permanent resident.

Why Would My Application be Denied? Will it Lead to Deportation?

There are many reasons a citizenship application may be denied, each with varied levels of severity.

The most common reason for a denial is that the applicant did not pass a portion of the citizenship test. If you fail the English language test or the American Government test, your application will be denied. The good news is this is a manageable situation. You will not lose your green card, nor will you be deported. You may have the opportunity for a second chance interview, a chance to try to pass the citizenship test again.

If the United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) finds that you should not have been granted a green card in the first place, perhaps because it was illegally acquired using fraudulent information, then not only will your application be denied and your green card stripped, but the process of removal proceedings will begin, meaning you will face deportation.

There are several more reasons an application denial could lead to the loss of your green card, which itself can lead to deportation.

If you abandoned your United States residence, that is to say, spent too much time outside of the United States, your application could be denied, your green card lost, and deportation becomes a severe threat.

If you commit certain crimes while you are a green card holder in the United States, you could face an application denial, the loss of your green card, and deportation.

If you engage in a sham marriage with a United States citizen in an effort to illegally acquire your green card and, later, citizenship. If your marriage is found to be invalid, then you illegally entered the United States, your application will be denied, your green card will be revoked, and you will face deportation.

What Are My Options if My Application Is Denied and I Lose My Green Card?

The first thing you should do if your application is denied and your USCIS finds issues with your green card is consult with an immigration attorney, much like the experienced team at the Law Offices of Shelle-Ann Simon, PLLC. Any time you file an immigration-related application, you should consult with an attorney. They can help you iron out some of the technical procedures and help you avoid mistakes that could lead to any scrutiny. Even if you are sure of yourself and how the process works, having an experienced immigration attorney can help you secure your United States citizenship.

If USCIS discovers an issue during your application process, an attorney can assist you, help you understand the problem, and help you plan the best course of action. Your lawyer can also help you with deadlines. If you receive a request for evidence (RFE), it has an average response window of around 90 days, while a notice of intent to deny (NOID) has a much slimmer window of approximately 30 days.

It is essential to act quickly and efficiently during these windows. Your immigration lawyer can help you gather the necessary documentation, evidence, and proof that USCIS needs in order to approve your application and, barring that, save your permanent resident status.

If you have any questions regarding an application denial, a notice of intent to deny, a request for evidence, or better yet, you are just now starting the United States citizenship application, call the Law Office of Shelle-Ann Simon, PLLC at 281-606-0800. You can also schedule a case evaluation using our online contact form.

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