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Teen immigrant gets green card thanks to pro bono lawyers

It may seem impossible for a teenage immigrant who independently crossed the U.S. border to successfully stay in the country, but one boy's success story has proved to many Texas residents that just such a situation can occur. A 16-year-old boy has been granted a green card after fleeing his native El Salvador at age 12. The child told authorities that he was running away from a forced gang initiation, and he wanted to search for his father.

News reports show that the child's journey began in El Salvador, but he traveled to Guatemala, Mexico and then eventually Texas. He was taken into custody by immigration officials when he reached that state. That is when he was introduced to representatives from Kids In Need of Defense. That nonprofit group provides attorneys to underage individuals who need legal assistance.

Immigration attorneys associated with KiND provided the child with the resources he needed to file a successful green card application. Experts say that the legal system can be challenging for an adult, much less for an immigrant child. As a result, the assistance provided by the KiND professionals can be considered invaluable.

The child in this case now lives in Los Angeles, which is one of the busiest offices for KiND representatives. He has learned how to speak English, and he said he plans to attend a university and study engineering as a profession. KiND has helped the child achieve permanent residency, which will lead to positive changes in his personal and professional life.

Young immigrants who need help with obtaining an adjustment of status may benefit from the assistance provided by a Texas immigration attorney. These professionals may understand the unique needs of children who have crossed the border on their own. This special population deserves consideration and legal assistance in obtaining changes to their immigration status.

Source: NBC Los Angeles, "One Boy's Immigration Story Signals Hope for Children" John Cádiz Klemack, Mar. 14, 2014

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