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Immigration Consequences of Convictions

There are various reasons for alien removal under the Immigration and Nationality Act (INA) of the United States. If an individual is convicted of a criminal offense, this could constitute removal. An alien who is notified of removal may or may not be entitled to a hearing before an immigration judge.

An immigration law judge has the authority to grant relief and protection from removal if they see fit. A New York City immigration attorney from Musa-Obregon Law PC is able to represent aliens at these proceedings so that they do not have to face deportation or other penalties for their criminal conviction.

We represent individuals throughout Queens, Brooklyn, The Bronx, Manhattan, Rockland County and Westchester County.

Crimes That Could Result in Deportation

According to the Department of Justice, convictions for the following criminal offenses can trigger deportability:

  • Crimes Involving Controlled Substances
  • Crimes Involving Moral Turpitude
  • Aggravated Felony Offenses
  • Firearm / Explosive Device Convictions
  • Treason and Related Offenses
  • Domestic Violence, Stalking, Child Abuse & Related Offenses
  • Failure to Register as a Sex Offender
  • Violation of a Protective Order
  • High Speed Flight from an Immigration Checkpoint
  • Falsification of Documents

There are also crimes that, if committed, could label an alien as "inadmissible." This means that the individual will not be allowed to enter or become a citizen/permanent resident of the U.S. To learn more about the criminal offenses that could trigger deportation, visit the Department of Justice website.

Information About Removal Proceedings

Removal proceedings occur after the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) files a charge that a particular alien has been convicted of a deportable criminal offense. The individual will be notified of the removal proceeding when they receive a Notice to Appear. This notice will also explain the grounds for removal. These civil immigration proceedings are different than criminal trials, but the alien still has a right to attorney representation. The burden of proof lies with the alien and his or her lawyer to prove that, beyond a doubt, they should be admitted to the U.S. and not removed. After evaluating the facts of the case, the judge will make a decision. Although the alien has the right to appeal this decision and ask for judicial review, this does not guarantee a reversal of the judge's decision.

Cancellation of Removal

According to INA § 240A, some aliens convicted of deportable criminal offenses may be able to qualify for cancellation of removal.

There are three basic qualifications for cancellation of removal:

  1. The individual has been a lawful permanent resident for at least five years;
  2. The individual has been a resident of the U.S. for seven consecutive years; and
  3. The individual has never been convicted of an aggravated felony offense.

If you were convicted and were notified of the possibility of deportation, your New York City immigration lawyer could help you plead for a cancellation of removal if you qualify. Similarly, there is also something called "adjustment of status" which could also be effective in cancelling the removal of an individual.

There are four qualifications for this type of cancellation:

  1. The individual has lived in the U.S. for at least ten consecutive years;
  2. The individual has displayed good moral character;
  3. The individual has not been convicted under § 212(a)(2) or (a)(3); and
  4. The individual is able to establish that removal would cause extreme hardship to their spouse, parent or child who is a U.S. citizen or permanent resident.

New York City and Manhattan Immigration Lawyer

The NYC and Queens immigration attorneys at Musa-Obregon Law PC can counsel you on the ramifications a criminal conviction might have. Our team of lawyers understands U.S. immigration law as well as the options, such as cancellation of removal, that may be available to you. We will fight aggressively to protect your right to remain in this country.

To learn more, contact our New York immigration firm today!

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