What is Voluntary Departure?

Voluntary Departure is when an alien is allowed  to leave the United States independently if he can pay for his or own trip.  One desired benefit this form of relief  has is to allow the alien to immediately return to the U.S. if there is a legal way to do so. Furthermore, because a voluntary departure is not a deportation, an alien cannot be prosecuted for reentry after deportation if he comes back to the country illigally.

Requirements for Voluntary Departure

1. The Alien must prove he has been of “good moral character” for the last five years AND be able to pay travel expenses.

2. Alien must depart after the alien has received voluntary departure from ICE within a specified number of days. 60 days can be granted from judge but ICE can extend this to 120 days. Failure to to depart within time limit renders the alien ineligible for relief such as cancellation of removal, adjustment of status, change of status, voluntary departure, or registry. Mandatory Civil Fines are also imposed.


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