Children under 21 with moderate to severe autism can help their undocumented parents get out of the shadows

Ricardo Sánchez, a 16-year-old autistic boy is jumping for happiness: his father Cesáreo Sánchez received a letter informing him that his permanent residence in the United States was approved. Ricardo's autism helped his father out of the shadows.

“I feel the happiest man in the world, and very grateful to God,” says Cesarean, radiating joy, and who says he has not been able to receive a better Christmas gift than his residence.

Cesáreo along with Sergio, Ofelia Reyes and Ricarda Muñoz were surprised by their immigration lawyer, Alex Gálvez with the letters of approval of the residence.

Four parents will spend the happiest Christmas of their lives, with the news that they are already residents. (Araceli Martínez / The Opinion)

The four parents have several things in common: they are Mexican immigrants, they have children born in the United States with a moderate to severe autism; and it was precisely this condition that allowed them to obtain residence.

Cesáreo, a factory worker in a textile factory in Los Angeles, left Zinacantepec, a town in the state of Mexico 25 years ago to come to the United States, in search of a better life.

Ricardo is his youngest son. In addition to autism he suffers from epilepsy. "I would not have wanted this kind of illness for him."

Regular reader of The opinionHe said that it was through this newspaper that he learned that his son's autism could help him obtain residency.

“I decided to go see immigration lawyer Alex Gálvez,” says Cesáreo, but before doing so he investigated it. “I didn't want to be a victim of a scam. I even went to the Chamber of Commerce to see his record, ”he recalls.

Cesáreo Sánchez with his son Ricardo who helped him obtain residency. (Araceli Martínez / The Opinion).

Two years after that first visit, Cesarean was called to his lawyer's office. He did not know that the residence would be the most wonderful Christmas gift of his life.

"I am 53 years old. My plans now are to overcome myself and at the first opportunity I want to go see my mother and my brothers in Mexico. I couldn't see my dad when he died, ”he says.

Cesarean released the body for the first time after 25 years of not having immigration status. "I feel happy and freer," external.

Sergio Reyes has red eyes. The news of being a resident has moved him. He and his wife Ofelia are parents of Yarezi, a nine-year-old autistic girl.

"I feel a very big emotion”, Sergio says in a voice broken by the feeling and struggling to hold back the tears.

Sergio and Ofelia Reyes are congratulated by immigration lawyer Alex Gálvez for receiving permanent residence thanks to his daughter Yarezi. (Araceli Martínez / La Opinion).

Sergio is from Colima, Mexico. He emigrated 27 years ago to the US and his wife Ofelia arrived in the country 15 years ago. He makes a living as a driver. She is engaged in home.

"We realized that the girl was autistic when she was two years old”Says Ophelia.

They heard stories that they could obtain residence through their daughter's condition, but they were not sure why other people discouraged them.

"A lawyer told us that you could not," external, but in 2017, they went to see the lawyer Gálvez.

“My husband did not want to. He also said that it was not true. I begged so much that he accepted. I said, let's just ask! ”, He says.

A few weeks after receiving the residence card, Sergio says he will look for a better job to ensure his daughters a more promising future.

Meanwhile, his wife Ofelia has his eyes set on his native Michoacán, Mexico. “I want to go see my mom. My dad died two years ago and I couldn't see him. That is the price we pay immigrants without papers. We don't have the possibility of going to bury our loved ones, ”he says with a hint of sadness.

Sergio and Ofelia Reyes pose happily next to their daughter Yarezi after receiving the news that they are already US residents. (Araceli Martínez / The Opinion).

Ricarda Muñoz obtained his residence thanks to the autism of his two children: Richie Reyes, 8, and Héctor Reyes, 16. The youngest and the oldest of his five children.

“I feel a relief. How are things. Any day they beat me to Mexico for not having papers. The truth, sometimes I felt fear, ”says the immigrant from Aguascalientes, Mexico. “My dream now that I am a resident is to go to my country. For 17 years I can't see my family. ”

Ricarda also learned from the news about the possibility of having immigration status through the autism of her children.

"I came a day without a date to see lawyer Gálvez after seeing another who did not convince me," he says.

Ricarda Muñoz was able to obtain residence thanks to her two children with autism. Here he appears with Richie. (Araceli Martínez / The Opinion).

Autism Residence

Immigration attorney Alex Gálvez says that when it comes to autism, parents of children with this condition can qualify for residency, as long as theA category is moderate to severe.

“If autism is mild, they will not qualify; unless they have another added condition such as mental retardation, hydrocephalus, etc. ”, he emphasizes.

Emphasize that these cases are won in immigration court and are approved by a judge.

"There is no need to take the child to court," he observes.

Nevertheless, The key to winning is to present the documentation that proves moderate to severe autism.

“The judges want to see evaluations of schools, and doctor and psychological reports. These cases are won with documents proving the condition. We can have a severe case of autism, but if parents have not worried about taking their children to a doctor, special classes and therapies, among other services, and you cannot prove and document it, you don't win, ”he remarks.

The expert on migration issues indicates that the judges sympathize with these families. "I have won all cases, but you have to prove them to convince the judge."

The other element of utmost importance is that the residence is requested when the children are not more than 16 years old.

The immigration lawyer, Alex Gálvez brought together three families with autistic children who arrived at the residence at almost the same time. (Araceli Martínez / The Opinion)

"Although the law says that you can qualify until age 21, they are not approved if the children have already reached that age," he continues. “The average for these cases to be resolved is between two and three years, but it has been my turn to see that they take up to five years for changes of judges and other issues. That is why it is better to request them as soon as possible. ”

The lawyer emphasizes that autism manifests between two and three years of age.

The other two requirements for parents to qualify for residency when a child has autism is that they have lived in the country for at least ten years; They have no criminal record or express deportations.

“It is very important that, during the residency application process based on an autistic child, the father or mother does not commit any crime because one step away from earning it can be lost by mistake,” he says.

And finally the lawyer recommends that you look for lawyers with experience in residence cases based on a disability.

Galvez comments that this type of relief also applies to spouses or an undocumented father with severe health conditions. "Children or husbands must have residence or citizenship to apply for residence."

The lawyer says that these three families of immigrants with autistic children will spend this December 25, the happiest Christmas of their lives.

"As the times are with this president Trump, they could not have received a better gift," external.


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