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Korean adoptee facing deportation prompts reconsideration of law

Imagine living your entire life in one country from the time you are a small child. You are engrained in the culture, you speak the language and you have known no other home. Imagine now that you are suddenly faced with being deported back to your country of origin -- a country you may not know anyone and may not have ever even been to. Anyone would fear what could happen next.

Unfortunately, this scenario is one man's reality. Adopted as a 3-year-old from Korea, the man is now facing deportation because neither set of American parents who adopted him took the time to apply for his naturalization.

According to an earlier NBC report, the man was physically and sexually abused by his adoptive parents. He is facing deportation for crimes he committed as a juvenile -- one of which involved breaking into his parents' home to find his adoption papers.

The man's case has prompted legislators to consider amending the Child Citizenship Act of 2000. The amendment would allow any child adopted by U.S. citizens to automatically become U.S. citizens themselves. The amendment would work retroactively, so the man in this scenario would become a U.S. citizen.

Many people may be wondering why this is not already the law. Adoption creates family, and if the adoptees are not given automatic citizenship, the law is working against these families. As we wait to see if the amendment passes, it is important for any adoptive parents in New York to protect their children by applying for naturalization on their behalf. If you experience difficulty, an immigration lawyer can guide you through the process.

Source: NBC News, "Could This Amendment Save Adoptee Adam Crasper From Deportation?" Frances Hai-Hwa Wang, April 8, 2015

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