Adoptee fighting deportation

From the Salt Lake Tribune:

Samuel Jonathan Schultz, a legal resident of the United States, fears the worst if he is sent back to India, a country he left at age 3 when he was adopted by a West Valley City woman.

Yet another case where the adoptive parent failed to secure U.S. citizenship for a child adopted from overseas. There have been several others: John Gaul, deported to Thailand, Joao Herbert, deported to Brazil, where he was later murdered. Aaron Billings and Dan Heiskala, facing deportation, current status unknown.

While the Child Citizenship Act of 2000 amended immigration law to grant immediate citizenship to many adoptees upon their arrival in the United States, the law is not retroactive to adopted persons over the age of 18. Additionally, adoptees arriving on an IR-4 visa must fulfill additional requirements to obtain citizenship. I believe there are also different requirements for U.S. citizen parents who do not live in the U.S.

Adoptive parents: Secure your child’s proof of citizenship from the BCIS and keep it in a safe place. Do it even if you think your child is a citizen under the law.  Adoptees: find your papers.

Adopted persons should not suffer for the errors or omissions of their parents.


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