Voluntary Departure

Voluntary Departure (VD) is not a true defense in that it does not allow a person to remain in the U.S.  VD allows a person to avoid a final removal order and, thus, he or she is eligible to seek legal admission at any time after leaving the U.S.

VD can be granted pre-proceedings, pre-hearing, before completion of the hearing or at the conclusion of the hearing.  It gives a person up to 60 days to voluntarily depart the U.S. at his or her own expense. 120 days can be granted pre-proceeding, pre-hearing or by stipulation.

If a person fails to depart in the time granted, he or she will be fined and become ineligible for further relief for 10 years after departure.