Cases & Deals

Jones Day secures guardianship for unaccompanied minor from Guatemala

Client(s) Client C.L.M.

Jones Day recently represented the older sister of a 17-year old girl who had emigrated from Guatemala to the United States fleeing hardship and violence. The child was detained at the border as an unaccompanied minor and the Office of Refugee Resettlement designated our client to be her minor sister's sponsor during the pendency of her immigration proceedings. Jones Day represented our client in securing full legal custody of her sister and a ruling that the child was dependent under Georgia law. Further, the court issued the requested findings that (1) it was not viable for the child to be reunited with one or both of her parents and (2) it was not in the child's best interests to return to Guatemala. These findings are necessary in order for the child to pursue Special Immigrant Juvenile Status, and the permanent residency status that it accords, from the United States Citizenship and Immigration Service. Utilizing the predicate order secured by Jones Day, the child is actively pursuing Special Immigrant Juvenile Status under the representation of Catholic Charities. Further, the child has received a number of services to help her adjust to her new home and address the impact of her experiences in her home country.