February 28, 2021

Volume XI, Number 59


February 26, 2021

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Trump Approves Deferred Deportation for Venezuelans

On Trump’s last day of office, the White House approved deferred deportation for some Venezuelans. The White House issued a memo yesterday that approved Deferred Enforced Departure (DED) for Venezuelans. Venezuelans who are eligible for deferral can continue to live and work in the U.S., similar to those included under the Temporary Protected Status (TPS) program.

The Memo Condemning Actions of Venezuelan Government

The White House memo expressed disapproval over the actions of the Venezuelan government and its President Nicolas Maduro. It accused the government of corruption and “the worst humanitarian crisis in the Western Hemisphere in recent memory. A catastrophic economic crisis and shortages of basic goods and medicine have forced about five million Venezuelans to flee the country, often under dangerous conditions,” the memo stated.

The memo went on to say that conditions in Venezuela were precarious, representing an ongoing national security threat to the safety and well-being of the American people, noting that “the deteriorative condition within Venezuela, which presents an ongoing national security threat to the safety and well-being of the American people, warrants the deferral of the removal of Venezuelan nationals who are present in the United States.”

Who Is Eligible for Deferred Deportation?

The new policy defers deportation of any Venezuelan national, or alien without nationality who last habitually resided in Venezuela, and who is present in the United States as of January 20, 2021. The DED does not apply to the following Venezuelans:

  • Those who have voluntarily returned to Venezuela or their country of last habitual residence outside the United States

  • Those who have not continuously resided in the United States since January 20, 2021

  • Those who are inadmissible to the United States under security and related grounds pursuant to the Immigration and Nationality Act or are removable under security-related grounds

  • Those who have been convicted of any felony or two or more misdemeanors committed in the United States

  • Those who were deported, excluded, or removed prior to January 20, 2021

  • Those who are subject to extradition

  • Those whose presence in the United States has been determined by the Secretary of Homeland Security to be not in the interest of the United States or to present a danger to public safety

  • Those whose presence in the United States will have potential adverse foreign policy consequences as reasonably believed by the Secretary of State

  • This move by the Trump administration was applauded by some Republican lawmakers who have, for some time now, felt that the United States must condemn the socialist dictatorship in Venezuela.

Pennsylvania is home to thousands of Venezuelan immigrants with many in the Allentown, Bethlehem, and Reading areas. 

©2020 Norris McLaughlin P.A., All Rights ReservedNational Law Review, Volume XI, Number 20



About this Author

Raymond Lahoud Immigration Attorney Norris McLaughlin

Raymond G. Lahoud, Chair of the firm’s Immigration Law Practice, focuses exclusively on the area of immigration law and deportation defense for individuals, families, small to large domestic and multinational businesses and corporations, employers, international employees, investors, students, professors, researchers, skilled professionals, athletes, and entertainers, in every type of immigration or deportation defense matter—whether domestic or foreign.  While Ray’s immigration practice is global in reach, with service to individuals and organizations across the United States and beyond,...