I am in the US NAVY and my spouse has an order of removal

I have known my husband since 2002. We have been great friends over the years. When he first came to the USA in Jan 2002 (he is from Venezuela). He applied for asylum. In July of 2007 that was denied and he was given an order of removal from a federal judge. When we got married in Dec 2017, it wasn't until afterwards he told me his secret. He could not go back to his country from which he feared that he could possibly be killed.

With me being in the Navy and the job field that I am in I have a very sensitive security clearance. I had to tell the Navy everything because they had to do their own background check on my husband. One of the provisions from DODCAF (these are the people who adjudicate clearances) is that he is not allowed to go back to his country for as long as he is married to me. His background check passed as he had no criminal background. They were already aware that we had filed our I-130 so they know we are going through the difficult process of getting a green card.

We are currently waiting for the I-130 to hopefully get approved and then with the help of an immigration lawyer have our case re-opened to see if we can get his order of removal over turned. What are out chances? I have plenty of proof that our marriage is a real one and have photos going way back even before that. But even with this current administration that might not be enough.

I came across this on the USCIS website: Discretionary Options for Military Members, Enlistees and Their Families

They have what is called Deferred action (Do not confuse this deferred action with DACA).

Here is what I copied and pasted from the USCIS website. This type of deferred action is only available to the military and their families apparently.

Deferred action is a form of prosecutorial discretion to defer removal action (deportation) against an individual for a certain period of time. If we grant you deferred action, the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) considers you to be lawfully present in the U.S. for the period deferred action is in effect. Deferred action does not give you lawful status, nor does it excuse any past or future periods of unlawful presence.

Under existing regulations, if you are granted deferred action, you are eligible to apply for employment authorization for the period of deferred action if you can demonstrate “an economic necessity for employment.” DHS can terminate deferred action at any time, at its discretion.

You may be eligible for deferred action for up to 2 years if you are the spouse, widow(er), parent, son or daughter of:

  • An active-duty member of the U.S. armed forces;
  • An individual in the Selected Reserve of the Ready Reserve; or
  • An individual who (whether still living or deceased) previously served on active duty or in the Selected Reserve of the Ready Reserve and was not dishonorably discharged.
In addition, Military Accessions Vital to the National Interest program enlistees in the Department of Defense Delayed Entry Program (DEP) may be eligible for deferred action. Spouses, parents, sons and daughters of enlistees in DEP may also be eligible for deferred action.

My lawyer doesn't seem to know about this and most lawyers that I have chatted to keep saying the only deferred action is DACA. When I talked to USCIS military hotline they said that many lawyers do not even know that this exists.

My question is: is this something I should push my lawyer to file for as well? The I-130 is currently pending and hopefully we will hear something soon as our receipt notice date was Jan 3, 2018.

Apparently this type of deferred action will hold my husband in the USA even if he has an order of removal from July 2007.

My JAG office has told me that military members have an advantage because the govt doesn't like to separate military members from their families. I am not sure how true that is but trying to remain hopeful.

I am in hopes that I have a good attorney.

Is there any advise/words of wisdom that can be given here?

As you know, military members....we do not make that much money so it's not like I have a lot of cash to throw around so any help that can be given is greatly appreciated.

Thank you,
ITC Fuchs