Introduction to Immigration Waivers and Immigration Appeals
We receive calls regarding many visa denials for which people would like immigration waivers. Some are possible andsome are not. When you contact us, please share with us the whole story that led to the
visa denial and do not ignore any facts; you never know what is important and can make a big difference. You only have one good opportunity to win a waiver. Once you file a bad case, it stays on record permanently. It is very important that you provide all the information necessary (what you were convicted of and a copy of the criminal report if you have it) so that we can fully explore all options available for your waiver.
We will not accept a case we do not feel we can win.
Call us for a evaluation and we will provide you with some honest answers. We only accept one of every 10 cases presented to us. If we don’t feel you can win, we will tell you, so at least you know. Call now at (619) 677-5727. Below is a list of some common areas we receive calls about when it comes to immigration waivers and immigration appeals.
Unlawful Presence and Immigration Waivers
If you have stayed one year past the date you were supposed to leave (usually on your I 94, the white thick piece of paper you receive from the immigration officer when you enter the country), you are banned from re-entering for 10 years. If you overstayed by 6 months, it is a 3-year bar. There are certain exceptions, but very few. One exception is for people who marry U.S. citizens and file for Adjustment of Status (the Green Card). However, if the foreign person leaves the United States, that is when the bar kicks in. If that is the case, the person cannot re-enter unless he or she has filed and won an extreme hardship waiver.
However, if there is something else in your past you need to address (i.e. criminal history or suspected of working without authorization), you shouldn’t just ignore it as waiting outside the country for 3 or 10 years does not guarantee entry at that time. If you have a criminal history, expungements are not recognized for purposes of immigration. You may qualify to have your Conviction Vacated. This should be discussed with your lawyer. More importantly, call us BEFORE you have your criminal trial as we can advise on the consequences of different strategies that may help with your subsequent immigration waiver. If you are an overstay and remain for 6 months past the expiry of your stay, you are subject to a 3-year bar from the country.
If you remain for 1 year past your authorization, you are subject to a 10-year bar. The only way to overcome them is to show Extreme Hardhsip to a US citizen parent or child; this is called an Extreme Hardship waiver and we prepare them on a regular basis. We also offer assistance for all aspects of immigration law, not just immigration waivers; we perform immigration appeals as well.
IIRIRA: Effects on Immigration Waivers
These took place many years ago, the effects are widespread and you should be aware of them. This is the law that put into effect the 3-year bar and 10-year bars. It affected many other areas. Here are some of them: Conviction for high-speed flight from immigration checkpoints, domestic violence, stalking, child abuse, child neglect, violating court protective orders regarding prevention of domestic violence. If you falsely claim to be a citizen, you are subject to deportation and an immigration appeal (or waiver) may be necessary.
Other important changes include the fact that Suspension of Deportation had been eliminated under Sections 212(c) and 244. This was a way to avoid deportation. In other words, it was ‘suspended’. In their stead, we have a 7-year Cancellation of Removal (It has the same effect- you are not deported) provision for people with Green Cards and a 10-year cancellation of removal for people who do not have a Green Card. Aggravated felons do not qualify for either ofthese and people who have committed any crime must show “exceptional and extremely unusual hardship”. However, if a crime is committed by the person or an NTA (Notice To Appear …. this is in Court) is served on them, the time stops counting towards the 7 or 10 years.
Aggravated Felonies are always a serious issue in immigration. Unfortunately, many crimes that are not aggravated felonies in a certain state are considered aggravated felonies for immigration purposes. The definition of aggravated felonies has changed, and now covers most felonies. Therefore, if you think you are in danger of being deported due to a crime you committed, we can help you with all questions regarding immigration law, which includes immigration appeals and immigration waivers. Also, thefts and violent crimes that carry a one-year sentence or more are now considered aggravated felonies. Importantly, they removed judicial review for people convicted of some crimes, discretionary bond and detention. On this note, they also made the change regarding the definitions of conviction and sentencing. For example, sentencing now is defined as the time ordered by the Court, regardless of whether or not the sentence or execution of it were withheld. An area of great concern is that nonimmigrants now have their visas automatically invalidated if you overstay by even an hour. Under Section 222(g), these person can no longer Change Status (this is the term for people going from one visa to another, such as a B-2 visitor going to an H-1b work visa) inside the United States.
The problem with this is that once you are outside the country, they have you, and if they feel you should not be let back in, you have a problem. In this case, you should seek our assistance with an immigration waiver or an immigration appeal. A last major change as a result of IIRIRA is that 4 major agencies must report (Section 404) to the USCIS (Immigration Dept) 4 times a year if they know that you are unlawfully present. These agencies are: HHS, HUD, SSA, and DOL.
Criminal Issues and Immigration Waivers
We are often asked by our clients what the difference is between being inadmissible and deportable. Someone who is in this country, under certain circumstances can be asked to leave, and that is deportation. Someone who is outside this country trying to enter could be inadmissible (previously called excludable). This means that if you have a Green Card, each time you re-enter the country you are seeking admission. If you have a criminal record, it could prevent you from entering. It that is the case with you, visit or call us immediately, especially if you intend to travel. The same rule applies to people who are Entering Without Inspection (EWI); these people are subject to all of the laws of admissibility. Entering Without Inspection, or being an EWI means that you entered the United States illegally).
This area of the law can be quite complex. For example, if you left America but did not enter a new country, you are not seeking readmission (let’s say you rented a boat and left the continent but only went fishing). Another example is a person who leaves America but for some reason is not admitted to Canada, that person has not left the United States and therefore does not seek readmission, avoiding the triggers of a person seeking readmission. There are many grounds of inadmissibility and these are the ones we are called about the most.