USA Immigration from Pakistan 

I just spoke with a potential client in Pakistan. He is a 25 year old man who just moved there from the USA, after spending 11 years in New Jersey.

He returned to Pakistan via “voluntary departure” in order to avoid deportation. Unfortunately, and unbeknownst to him, once he left, another law kicked-in, preventing him from returning to the USA for 10 years. That law is known as the ten year bar.

He was telling me how his city of Karachi seems totally lawless and that there are savage killings and mutilations almost every day. He expressed real fear as a minority Shia muslim that he could be a victim.

My experience representing clients in court is that the immigration judges don’t give much credence to the fears expressed by Pakistani asylum seekers here. But, listening to the fear in this young man’s New Jersey-accented-voice, made the situation in Karachi seem very real. Unfortunately for him, though, there is no quick-fix that will allow him to return to the USA anytime soon.


Bruce Coane is a leading lawyer with 30 years of experience in the field of immigration law and employment law. He may be reached via email at or his website at Coane and Associates.