Find help and informative articles about U.S. immigration law relating to family-based immigration including K1 fiance visas, green cards, and adjustment of status. Follow our news feed and keep up on the latest changes that may affect you or your family members.
Most of the topics I write about are based on inquiries from clients or prospective clients. Today I received an email from a foreign national who was concerned about her U.S. citizen boyfriends criminal record because they were considering applying for a K1 fiance visa. While a criminal record can, in some circumstances, create an insurmountable obstacle for an intending immigration or K1 visa applicant, the criminal record of the U.S. citizen petitioner, on its own, cannot be grounds for the denial of a K1 visa.
The U.S. immigration laws contain within them many provisions which can act as traps for the unwary and come back to haunt applicants for immigration benefits such as naturalization. One such provision of law is the requirement that naturalization applicants establish that he is a "person of good moral character, attached to the principles of the Constitution of the United States, and well disposed to the good order and happiness of the United States." INA §316(a).
The Immigration & Nationality Act (“INA”) lists several categories of persons who are inadmissible to the United States as immigrants or non-immigrants. One category of inadmissibility which often catches both prospective immigrants and practicioners by surprise is INA §212(a)(1)(A)(iv).
In the last year I have heard several people claim that in Michigan, an individual with a suspended or revoked driver's license can still legally operate a moped. It seemed absurd to me that a person whose license had been suspended or revoked for drunk driving or anything else could obtain a license to drive a moped. However, I knew that the licensing requirements for mopeds were different from those applying to cars and motorcycles and I had never researched this specific question.
In the final month of it's 2015 term, the U.S. Supreme Court heard two cases related to immigration law. The first case, Reyes Mata v. Lynch addressed appellate rights of immigrants in deportation proceedings. The second case, Kerry V Din, addressed whether a United States citizen's has a right to have a consular decision to deny her husband an immigrant visa reviewed by an appellate court.
The Holmes Youthful Trainee Act, commonly referred to as HYTA, is a Michigan law which was designed to give young criminal offenders a second chance. HYTA, which was originally enacted in 1966, currently applies to criminal defendants between the ages of 17 and 21.
In order to become a naturalized U.S. citizen an applicant must meet both the continuous residence and physical presence requirements. The continuous residence requirement means that the applicant must have, after acquiring lawful permanent residency, continuously resided in the United States for a period of three or five years. The physical presence requirement provides that the applicant must have been physically present in the U.S. for at least one half of their three or five year residence.
I often get ideas for article topics from cases I am working on, inquiries from prospective clients or past cases. I recently received a call from a prospective client about an important immigration issue that I have encountered several times in the last five years. The common situation involves a U.S. citizen who has a spouse or significant other who is a foreign national and does not have lawful permanent residency in the U.S. but spends at least half of her time in the U.S. with her spouse or significant other.
One of the most common misconceptions (and dangerous pitfalls) about U.S. immigration law made by prospective immigrants, their family members or employers is that all one must do is quickly complete a few simple forms and file them with the government. While one of the recurring themes in many of my posts is the fact that most immigrant visa petitions are granted or denied based on the strength and sufficiency of the supporting documents, I rarely talk about the importance of properly completing government forms.