If you are in the United States without legal authorization, you probably constantly worry about the possibility of deportation. That is understandable, but you should try not to panic. If you have children who are citizens of the United States, you may want to think about developing a plan to keep them safe during and after your removal proceedings.
Children require daily care and supervision. While you regularly make the best decisions about schooling, medical care and other important topics, if an immigration judge detains or deports you, you may not be able to care for your children. A temporary custody agreement may protect your children until you are able to do the job again.
Family law is different from immigration law
To handle your immigration case, you may need the assistance of an experienced immigration lawyer. You should know, however, that family law is considerably different from immigration law. That is, your immigration lawyer uses a series of federal laws, court decisions and regulations to handle your removal case. A Texas family lawyer, on the other hand, relies on Texas precedent to help you determine what is best for your children.
Temporary custody agreements protect children
The Appleseed Network is a nonprofit organization that assists lawyers in understanding the intersection of family law and immigration law for parents who are facing deportation. The group outlines times when a temporary guardianship is essential to protect the interests of U.S. citizen children with an undocumented parent. With one of these agreements, before you are unable to care for your children, you name a temporary guardian who can briefly make at least the following decisions on your behalf:
- Living arrangements
- Medical and dental care
It is important to understand that you can likely proactively define the parameters of your temporary guardianship agreement. You generally can also ask your attorney to help you limit the duration of the arrangement.
Temporary guardianships give you control
If you are facing removal, you may not feel like you have much control over your situation. Creating an effective temporary guardianship arrangement may help you take control of your children’s future. If you wait until you are outside the country or in a detention facility, however, it may be too late to execute an agreement. To keep your children safe and healthy, you may need to plan for temporary custody as soon as possible.