A group of parents who were deported from the U.S. are back in America, after an unprecedented court ruling. Nine parents who were deported as the Trump administration separated thousands of migrant families landed back in the US late on Wednesday to reunite with children they had not seen in a year and a half. The group arrived at Los Angeles International airport from Guatemala City in a trip arranged under the order of a federal judge who found the US government had unlawfully prevented them from seeking asylum. An asylum advocate confirmed the nine parents were all aboard the flight.
The reunion was a powerful reminder of the lasting effects of Trump’s separation policy, even as attention and outrage has faded amid impeachment proceedings and tensions with Iran. But it also underscored that hundreds, potentially thousands, of other parents and children are still apart nearly two years after the zero-tolerance policy on unauthorized border crossings took effect. “They all kind of hit the lottery,” said Linda Grimm, an attorney who represents one of the parents returning to the U.S. “There are so many people out there who have been traumatized by the family separation policy whose pain is not going to be redressed.” More than 4,000 children are known to have been separated from their parents before and during the official start of zero tolerance in spring 2018. Under the policy, border agents charged parents en masse with illegally crossing the US-Mexico border, then placed their children in government facilities, including some “tender-age shelters” set up for infants.
In this case of unlawful separation, and with the support of a federal judge, it will be interesting to see how it plays out with families seeking reparation for the time they have been separated from each other plus any economic, or other dire effects caused by this unlawful separation. The United States laws have specific requirements that need to be met for residency, and each situation of a deportee is unique, but may be re-addressed by legal counsel to help these families get their lives back on track, and establish if they had passed legal requirements before being deported. It will be interesting to see if new avenues of law will enable other families to be reunited.
Lawful status requirements.
Non-US citizens are required to present valid immigration documents in person at a Customer Service Center to prove identity and lawful status in the United States. Original documentation must be submitted each time a service is requested pertaining to a driver’s license or identification card. In some cases, one immigration document is sufficient to prove lawful status. In others, additional immigration documents are required to prove lawful status. Note: Original immigration documentation must be submitted each time service is requested pertaining to a driver license or identification card.
Social Security Number requirements.
An applicant must provide either a Social Security number or a letter of ineligibility for a Social Security number (Form SSAL 676). Collection and verification of social security numbers are required by state and federal law prior to issuance of a driver’s license or identification card. IF YOU ARE NOT ELIGIBLE FOR A SOCIAL SECURITY NUMBER you must obtain a letter of ineligibility, (Form SSAL676), from the Social Security Administration if the Department of Homeland Security has not given you permission to work in the United States
The law surrounding undocumented immigrants is complicated. If you have been separated from a family member under Trump’s separation policy and you require detailed information and assistance regarding your situation, please contact an experienced immigration lawyer.