Petition for Review of an Order by the Board of Immigration Appeals. B.I.A. No. A29-202-634. Original Opinion Previously Reoported at:,.
Before: Harry Pregerson, Cecil F. Poole, and Dorothy W. Nelson, Circuit Judges. Opinion by Judge Pregerson.
Order AND AMENDED OPINION
PREGERSON, Circuit Judge:
Petitioner Sunanta Tukhowinich appeals the Board of Immigration Appeals' (BIA or Board) decision denying her suspension of deportation under § 244(a) of the Immigration and Nationality Act (INA), 8 U.S.C. § 1254(a), for lack of extreme hardship. We have jurisdiction of the final deportation order under § 106 of the INA, 8 U.S.C. § 1105(a). We reverse.
Sunanta Tukhowinich was born on November 12, 1954, in Nakhon Pathom, Thailand. She is the eldest of eight children. At about age 16, Ms. Tukhowinich began working in Thailand for the Moon River Man's tailoring shop preparing sample garments. She worked there for ten years. Ms. Tukhowinich then attended a dress design school for two years to become a professional sample maker. She graduated on August 24, 1981.
On February 13, 1983, she entered the United States via Honolulu, Hawaii as a visitor. She has since remained in the United States. Ms. Tukhowinich settled in the Los Angeles area and found work as a sample maker in the garment industry. She has worked consistently as a sample maker for various employers. At one time Ms. Tukhowinich was the beneficiary of a sixth preference labor certification. The certification ultimately failed, however, because the company that sponsored her went out of business. At the time of the BIA hearing, she was earning $11.00 per hour. Ms. Tukhowinich testified that in Thailand she would earn a maximum of fifty cents per hour for the same type of work.
Of the eight siblings, three sisters have joined Ms. Tukhowinich in the United States. Like her, they are here illegally. Two of the three are working as cooks and the other is attending college in Pasadena. Ms. Tukhowinich is the sole support for the sister attending college and claims her as a dependent on her income tax. The four sisters live together in a small guest house in Los Angeles. In addition to providing for the personal needs for herself and the sister attending college, Ms. Tukhowinich pays their share of the living expenses for the rent, food, and utilities for the guest house. The rest of her income is sent back to her family in Thailand.
Ms. Tukhowinich testified before the Immigration Judge (IJ) that she is the primary source of support for her family. Her elderly parents are retired. Of the remaining four siblings in Thailand, none are working as they are either too young or are attending school. It appears that the family's primary financial source in Thailand is the money sent to them by Ms. Tukhowinich.
Ms. Tukhowinich has never been married nor does she have any children. She is not active in any social clubs or organizations. She maintains no connection socially with anyone in Thailand. She has never accepted welfare support and has filed her federal income tax return every year. She has never been convicted or accused of any crime.
On October 5, 1989, the INS issued an Order to Show Cause charging that Ms. Tukhowinich is deportable pursuant to § 241(a)(2) because she had stayed in the United States past the temporary period granted her as a nonimmigrant visitor. Ms. Tukhowinich concedes her deportability and has applied for suspension of deportation pursuant to § 244(a)(1), 8 U.S.C. § 1254(a). The IJ denied her application for suspension of deportation based upon a finding of no extreme hardship. The BIA affirmed the finding in a short opinion that relied solely upon the IJ's Disposition. That opinion failed to consider certain relevant factors. Ms. Tukhowinich now appeals.