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Work Permit Post Administrative Closure of Removal Proceedings Approved for Guatemalan Client

by JP Sarmiento on April 23, 2013

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CASE: I-765 Employment Authorization Post Admin Closure

CLIENT: Guatemalan

LOCATION: Cleveland, OH

Our client came to the United States from Guatemala in January 2000.  He entered the United States without valid inspection and admission. He has remained in the United States since then.

Years later, he married his U.S. citizen wife. He was placed in removal proceedings in 2012, and he hired our office to represent him.

At his master calendar hearing, our attorney took pleadings, sought relief under Cancellation of Removal, and filed his application. Our client also filed an I-765 work permit application to the USCIS. This I-765 was approved in March 2012.

Prior to his individual hearing in November 2012, upon request from our office and the Department of Homeland Security, and upon agreement of the Immigration Judge, his removal proceedings were administratively closed.

In February 2013, our client contacted our office again to renew his work permit.

Our office prepared and filed his I-765 work permit application on February 13, 2013.

Our office included a brief with the application because our client’s case was administratively closed; thus, granting a work permit is not automatic, but discretionary.

We cited a DHS memorandum on the issue, quoting their policy in that “Per longstanding federal law, individuals affected by an exercise of prosecutorial discretion will be able to request work authorization, including paying associated fees, and their requests will be separately considered by the USCIS on a case-by-case basis.”

Our office emphasized the equities of our client, how he has worked hard and paid taxes, his lack of any criminal record, and his marriage to a US Citizen.  His case was administrative closed due to several “positive” factors of his case.

Not every work permit application post-administrative closure is approved, but for our client, fortunately it was. The USCIS approved our client’s I-765 work permit renewal request on March 28, 2013. Despite the administrative closure, our client is authorized to work in the United States until March 20, 2014.

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