Wilner & O'Reilly, APLC
One Practice. One Focus. One Passion: Immigration Law.

Mixed-status households feeling the immigration pinch

In the immigration policy debate, one group appears to walk in the 'grey' area more than most. Mixed-status immigrant families, where some members are U.S. citizens while others are not, face unique challenges in the debate about illegal aliens. Many of these mixed-status families consist of illegal parents and U.S. citizen children, while others are more of a melting pot of some siblings being citizens and others being illegal immigrants.

It is estimated that over 200,000 deportations between July 2010 and September 2012 consisted of a member of a mixed-status home. This figure may even be on the low side due to the fact that many being deported fear exposing their family to the U.S. Department of Homeland Security and Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE), and thus don't claim to have any dependents or relatives with them.

It is unclear as to whether the coming immigration debates in Washington, D.C. will produce an immigrant reform bill that is beneficial to these families, or adds even more stress and anxiety due to stricter enforcement. These mixed-status homes often live with an underlining anxiousness at the knowledge that one or both of their parents, or some of their siblings and extended family may be subject to deportation at any time.

These policies where parents are subject to deportation while their children are not put both the families and the state at economic risk. It also creates a psychological strain on the families that can be detrimental to their full integration into American society. This is why it is imperative that the U.S. government and state governments create just laws in their search for new immigration policies.

If you find yourself in a situation where either you, your family, or another are in need of assistance with your immigrant status or deportation proceedings, please seek out legal advice from an attorney whom you can trust. Ensure that that they have your interests at heart so that they are best situated to serve you and your needs.

Source: abc News, "A Quarter of Deportations Are of Parents of U.S. Citizens," Ted Hesson, Dec. 17, 2012

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