In the realm of immigration law, nationality-based discrimination cases have become increasingly prevalent, prompting legal practitioners to explore various avenues for relief from deportation. As an immigration and criminal defense attorney with extensive experience in New York and New Jersey, I have encountered numerous clients facing the daunting prospect of deportation due to their nationality or country of origin.

In this essay, we will delve into the legal mechanisms available to individuals confronting nationality-based discrimination in deportation proceedings, offering a comprehensive guide to navigating these complex issues.

Understanding Key Legal Concepts

Before delving into the specific relief options, it is essential to grasp some fundamental legal concepts commonly encountered in nationality-based discrimination cases.

1. Nationality-Based Discrimination

  • Nationality-based discrimination refers to instances where an individual is subjected to adverse immigration consequences solely based on their nationality or country of origin. Such discrimination is prohibited under various federal laws and regulations.

2. OCAHO Proceedings

  • OCAHO stands for the Office of the Chief Administrative Hearing Officer, which adjudicates immigration-related employment cases, including those involving allegations of nationality-based discrimination.

Relief from Deportation

3. Cancellation of Removal

  • Cancellation of removal is a form of relief available to certain non-permanent residents who have been in the U.S. for at least ten years and can demonstrate good moral character. Successful applicants are granted legal permanent residency.

4. Asylum and Withholding of Removal

  • Asylum and withholding of removal are options for individuals who fear persecution in their home countries. Asylum is granted to those who meet the definition of a refugee, while withholding of removal provides protection against deportation to individuals who can establish a clear probability of persecution.

5. Convention Against Torture (CAT) Protection

  • CAT protection is available to individuals who can show that they are more likely than not to be tortured if removed to their home country. It offers a safeguard against deportation under the United Nations Convention Against Torture.

References to Legal Framework

To ensure the accuracy and reliability of the information presented, it is crucial to reference specific laws and regulations that pertain to nationality-based discrimination and relief from deportation. Some key references include the Immigration and Nationality Act (INA), Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, and various international conventions.

FAQs (Frequently Asked Questions)

Q1: What is the Immigration and Nationality Act (INA)?

A1: The INA is the primary federal law governing immigration and nationality in the United States. It sets forth the various categories of visas, admission criteria, deportation procedures, and the rights and responsibilities of immigrants.

Q2: How can I apply for asylum in the United States?

A2: To apply for asylum, you must be physically present in the U.S. and submit an asylum application within one year of your arrival. You must also demonstrate a well-founded fear of persecution based on race, religion, nationality, political opinion, or membership in a particular social group.

Q3: What is the role of OCAHO in nationality-based discrimination cases?

A3: OCAHO adjudicates cases involving allegations of nationality-based discrimination in employment, providing a forum for addressing such claims within the immigration system.


Nationality-based discrimination in immigration proceedings poses significant challenges, but there are legal avenues available to protect individuals from unjust deportation. By understanding key concepts, referencing relevant laws, and exploring relief options like cancellation of removal, asylum, and CAT protection, individuals facing discrimination can seek justice and relief. For further guidance and assistance, I invite you to visit, where you can find valuable resources and expert advice on immigration and criminal defense matters.

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