A “removal” proceeding is the name for the proceeding at which a noncitizen’s inadmissibility or deportability is decided. §212 of the Immigration and Nationality Act (INA) describes grounds for inadmissibility of noncitizens and INA §237(a) describes grounds for deportability of noncitizens. Both grounds for removal have their own form of discretionary waivers. The crux in determining whether a person is subject to inadmissibility laws versus deportation laws is the status of their admittance to the U.S. Noncitizens who enter the United States without having been “admitted” or paroled are inadmissible rather than deportable and therefore subject to INA §212 rather than INA§237(a) at removal proceedings. A special category of noncitizens, Lawful Permanent Residents (LPR’s), are presumed not to be applicants for admission.  When initiating removal proceedings, the government bears the burden of proving that an exception in INA § 101(a)(13)(C) applies to the LPR. The exceptions for LPR’s are as follows: (i) […]

Removal Proceedings: Inadmissibility v. Deportability

  You may have heard of the term “sanctuary cities.” It may conjure up notions of undocumented persons avoiding penalties under the law for their unlawful presence because the city utterly disagrees with U.S. immigration law completely and has thus decided not to cooperate with its enforcement on any level. What the term “sanctuary city” falsely symbolizes is that person’s who are unlawfully present in the United States will never be subject to criminal or civil penalties for their unlawful presence. That is a far cry from reality even in the most “immigrant friendly” states in the country, such as California. In most jurisdictions, local law enforcement will automatically notify ICE when a person will be released or will hold the person for violent or other serious crimes to be released to ICE. Computer systems have streamlined these actions. Immigrant’s and nonimmigrants alike should familiarize themselves with the implications of 287(g) […]

287(g) Agreements: What You Should Know

    Some categories of immigrants are subject to a quota. When an application falls within a quota category, a prediction of the time until one’s visa will become available can alleviate some of the anxiety in waiting. Supply and demand within a given visa category and per-country limits vary the wait time for individual applicants.  Once immigration to the United States is determined to be possible, wait time can be estimated by viewing the “Visa Bulletin.”  This bulletin is currently available on the State Department Website.   Understanding the bulletin   (1) First, determine the category of concern: the bulletin below examples the Family Sponsored Preference categories.     Family-Sponsored Preferences:   First: (F1) Unmarried Sons and Daughters of U.S. Citizens: the maximum amount of visas allotted are 23,400 plus any numbers not required for fourth preference.   Second: Spouses and Children, and Unmarried Sons and Daughters of Permanent Residents:  114,200, plus […]

Introduction to the Visa Bulletin