Criminal Charges and Immigration

In 2011, nearly one million people received legal permanent residence right in the United States, and roughly 780,000 were naturalized citizens. Criminal Charges.

At any given moment it is possible to find hundreds or thousands least a few thousand being considered for green cards, visas, or citizenship for those who wish to reside in, work, study as well as conduct business in the United States.

The process of obtaining a visa is complex and the paperwork involved could be Byzantine in its entirety, from the plethora of forms and documentation required to be submitted for a visa, residency, or citizenship application as well as the checks for background and interviews which a prospective visitor as a resident, naturalized, or citizen has to go through. 

The rules and procedures are often difficult to comprehend and any potential citizens and immigrants are examined to the last minute detail.

If you’re seeking the student visa or green card for work within the United States, or want to be a new citizen, you must understand how previous convictions or criminal charges could impact the application. Certain crimes may not have an impact in any way. 

Criminal Charges

For instance, minor traffic offenses like speeding tickets will not normally prevent you from obtaining a visa or green card. 

However, other kinds of violations could cause your application to be rejected — or for you to be deported to the country you came from. Learn more below about the criminal penalties and immigration

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Visas

Non-Immigrant Visas

If someone from a different country is planning to travel to the United States, he or usually requires a visa. 

Non-immigrant visas can be used when someone wishes to remain temporarily in the United States for some finite time period instead of becoming permanent residents and/or trying to become a citizen. 

Visa applications are processed in the U.S. Department of State The majority of applications are submitted to an embassy, or consulate in your country of residence or to the closest one there is in the country you are from.

There are many types of visas for non-immigrants. The kind of visa an applicant requires will be based on the reason why he or she is within the United States. Certain kinds of non-immigrant visas are very specific. 

For instance, there’s a visa known as an E3 visa, which is designed intended for the Australian citizen who’s coming into America. The U.S. only for the reason to work in a specific profession.

Other types of non-immigrant Visas are brisker. Some types of non-immigrant Visas are:

  • Tourist visa
  • Student visa
  • Guest Worker visa
  • Business Visitor visa
  • Criminal Victim Visa
  • Human Trafficking Victim Visa
  • Spouse or child who is not a non-immigrant the Permanent Resident visa

Immigrant Visas

Another type of visa is for those who wish to move to the United States. The United States and make the United States their home. 

Like non-immigrant visas, there are many types of visas for immigrants, and the kind you require will be contingent on the reason why you’re seeking to migrate into the U.S. Common types of immigrant visas are:

  • Spouse of the holder of a U.S. Citizen visa
  • Fiance or the fiancee of the U.S. Citizen visa
  • International Adoption Visas
  • Certain family members who are U.S. Citizens visas
  • Certain family members of permanent residents’ visas
  • Visas for Employment sponsored by employers
  • Visas for Employment-Based Immigrants
  • Returning Resident visas

Green Card/Permanent Residency

IMMIGRANTS WHO WANT TO BECOME PERMANENT RESIDENTS OF THE UNITED STATES CAN DO SO IN ONE OF A FEW DIFFERENT WAYS.

  • If you’re the immediate close relative of a U.S. citizen. Immediate relatives can include the parent of the U.S. citizen, spouse of a U.S. citizen, or children under the age of 21 who are U.S. citizen, you might be eligible to apply for a green card.
  • If you are an eligible relative of a U.S. citizen. The qualifying relatives, according to preference visas are children of unmarried adults from U.S. citizens; spouses of permanent residents as well as unmarried children younger than 21 who are permanent residents. adult unmarried youngsters of residents siblings of adults U.S. citizens, their spouses, and their minor children.
  • If you’re employed or have you have a job offer. Sorted by preference, work visas are granted to workers with priority who have extraordinary capabilities, professors, researchers, and other experts who are at an elite level in their fields as well as some multinational executives and managers; professionals who have advanced degrees or extraordinary abilities, professionals and skilled workers Certain special immigrants, such as religious people as well as entrepreneurs and investors who are able to create jobs.
  • In the event that you’re a refugee, have been given asylum or your spouse, child or parent of someone who has been granted asylum.
  • Other categories that are special are parent or friend of a domestic abuse victim, a victim of a crime or the surviving spouse of a U.S. citizen, or a parent who is a diplomat from another country who is a diplomat in the U.S.

As visas are processed, and then approved by The U.S. Department of State The application to obtain the right to remain in America will be processed and then either accepted or rejected by U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services.

What happens when a criminal record can affect your Visa as well as Green Card Application

When you apply for admission into the America United States, or to become a permanent resident in the United States, a portion of the process to apply will require an investigation into your criminal history. 

Criminal convictions for specific kinds of criminal acts can block you from obtaining a visa for work, student or green card, spouse visa, or any other visa or permit to reside or travel in the U.S.

Criminal offenses that are serious that are considered felonies most likely result in the refusal of the application.

Under SECTION 212(A)(2) of the NATIONALITY AND IMMIGRATION ACT, You could be considered ineligible for admission to the United States of America based on A CRIMINAL RECORD IF:

  • You were found guilty of an offense of moral turpitude or an attempted to commit a crime of moral turpitude or a conspiracy to commit the crime of moral turpitude.
  • You were found guilty of a drug offense or attempt to commit a drug crime or conspiring to commit a crime involving drugs.
  • You’ve been convicted of multiple crimes.
  • You were involved in drug trafficking or committed a crime that is related to trafficking in drugs
  • You took part in prostitution or procuring
  • You were accused of serious criminal charges and then claimed immunity to prosecution and later fled in the United States without submitting to the legal jurisdiction of a U.S. court
  • You participated in the human trafficking
  • You participated in the laundering of money
  • You were a government official from a foreign country who was a blatant violator of the freedom of religion

The Crimes in Moral Turpitude

Moral turpitude crimes usually involve some form of fraud, theft, or the intention of harming the property or person of a victim. U.S. immigration law excludes the conviction of crimes that are solely politically motivated. 

For instance, a breach of the peace is categorized as moral turpitude as a crime in the context of visa applications However, if your conviction was based solely on participation in the course of a political demonstration then it will not be considered against you.

There is also an exception in the event that you committed the offense at a time when you were less than 18 when the offense took place and was released from prison longer than five years prior to your application for a visa. 

If, for instance, you’re a college student requesting an entry visa for a student and you were convicted of shoplifting at the age of you were 15 years old, you might be able to apply for a student visa as long as you served your sentence no more than five years prior to.

Another exemption is in the event that your offense was not a major offense and is described as an offense where the maximum penalty does not exceed one calendar year of imprisonment and you were not sent to prison for more than 6 months in jail when the court found you guilty.

If a crime is deemed to be affecting the visa application process It could be committed on American the same soil, or in a different country. You must provide an original copy of your court records from the place you were convicted to submit your application for a visa.

The list of criminal acts that could be considered morally turpitude-related and consequently could affect the visa application process is long. 

Moral turpitude crimes are classified into the broad categories of crime against property as well as crimes against the state as well as crimes against a person’s family relationships, and sexual morality.

According to the U.S. Department of State, a few common crimes of MORAL TURPITUDE that could affect the validity of your VISA Application include:

  • Burglary
  • Arson
  • Blackmail
  • Embezzlement
  • Extortion
  • False Pretenses
  • Forgery
  • Fraud
  • Petit or even Grand Larceny
  • Destructive Malicious Damage to Property
  • Being aware of receiving stolen goods
  • Robbery
  • Theft
  • Transporting Stolen Property
  • Bribery
  • Counterfeiting
  • Tax Fraud or Fraud against the Government
  • Mail Fraud
  • Perjury
  • Consciently harboring a fugitive
  • Willful Tax Evasion
  • Assault with intent to kill or assault with intent to Commit Robbery. Assault in the intent of Committing serious bodily harm; Assault with a deadly or dangerous weapon
  • Child Abandonment
  • Bigamy
  • Factors that contribute to the Delinquency of minors
  • Gross Indecency
  • Incest is the result of an unintentional sexual encounter
  • Kidnapping
  • Lewdness
  • Voluntary Manslaughter
  • Manslaughter involuntary
  • Murder
  • Mayhem
  • Pandering
  • Possession of Child Pornography
  • Prostitution
  • Rape as well as the lawful Rape

Drug Crimes

A green card or visa application could be rejected in the event that you’ve been convicted of a crime involving the use of a controlled substance. Similar to the crimes of moral turpitude.

However, there are exceptions in the event that you were minors and your conviction occurred more than five years old and also in the case of a minor crime punishable by up to one year in prison and you’ve actually served at least six months.

Drug-related crimes that could prevent you from getting a Visa or GREEN CARD:

  • The possession of a controlled Drug is typically defined as knowingly and possibly having an illegal substance on your body or under your immediate control
  • Possession of drug-related paraphernalia In addition to devices used for taking drugs, this could comprise things such as scales, measuring items, and other items for the use, distribution, or manufacturing of controlled substances.
  • Manufacturing a Controlled substance could involve cultivating plants or making the illegal drug in a laboratory
  • Distribution of a controlled substance It can involve selling, delivering, or distributing a controlled substance to someone who is not legally

A controlled substance may be any of the substances that are listed in the federal drug schedules that are part of the Controlled Substances Act at 21 U.S.C. 802. Some of the most common illicit substances which are included in the schedules are:

  • Cocaine
  • Heroin
  • Methamphetamine
  • Marijuana
  • PCP
  • LSD
  • Ecstasy

The DRUG SCHEDULES INCLUDE Legally-approved medications that are illegal to use without a valid prescription, such as:

  • Pain medication like Oxycontin, Percocet, Hydrocodone, Vicodin, Codeine, Morphine, or Fentanyl
  • The tranquilizers include Valium, Xanax, and Ativan
  • Barbiturates like Amytal, Nembutal, Seconal and Phenobarbital
  • Such stimulants as Adderall and Ritalin

The Immigration and Nationality Act specifically penalizes offenses relating to the illegal trafficking of a substance as crimes against which you are unable to gain access to or even residency in the United States. 

It is kind of like distribution however, it is typically dealing with huge quantities of controlled substances.

Drug trafficking violations that occur in the United States are very serious criminal offenses that can result in years in prison, and possibly millions of dollars of fines. 

For instance, a single conviction for trafficking 500 – 4,999 grams of cocaine which is approximately one to eleven pounds is punishable by five to forty years in prison, and the possibility of a fine of five million dollars for one person. 

Trafficking 5 kilograms or more or more than 11 pounds, could result in an additional sentence of between 10 and 20 years imprisonment and the possibility of a fine of 10 million dollars or more.

It is possible to be denied eligibility to receive a visa or green card, not just for convictions for trafficking in drugs as well as for other related crimes that include aiding, abetting, aiding, conspiring, or colluding with other people to traffic illicit drugs. 

But, a conviction is not necessary for your green or visa card to be rejected. The authorities reviewing your application need to be aware or have grounds to believe that they have significant evidence that you were involved in drug trafficking or any related activities.

The Son, spouse, or daughter of someone who is involved in drug trafficking could be disqualified from obtaining a visa or green card if the spouse or child of the drug trafficker has been a recipient of any other financial or financial benefit from drug trafficking during the last five years and they knew that the cash or benefits came from trafficking.

The exemption to being convicted as a minor doesn’t apply to a drug trafficking crime.

commercialized vice and prostitution

In accordance with the Immigration and Nationality Act, you could be refused a visa or green card if you:

  • Visit America U.S. for the sole or primary intention of engaging in prostitution
  • You were involved in prostitution for at least 10 years prior to the time you submitted
  • In the 10 years prior to the date of your application, you purchased or attempted to obtain prostitutes; engaged in prostitution; or received the proceeds from prostitution
  • Participated in any other illegal commercially based crime

In accordance with the U.S. Department of State, the conviction of vagrancy, disorderly conduct, or loitering for the sole purpose of prostituting could result in a finding that you are not eligible for a green card or visa in accordance with this section of the Immigration and Nationality Act.

Asserting Immunity

If you were accused of committing the most serious crime during your time in the United States and claimed immunity from prosecution, and then you left to leave the United States, you may be refused a visa or green card when you try to return, unless you have subsequently admitted yourself to the court of the U.S. court for the crime.

Serious criminal offenses could include:

  • Any felony
  • Any crime that is violent
  • Unsuspecting driving
  • DUI or DWI

Trafficking in Human Trafficking

Similar to the law governing trafficking drugs and trafficking in drugs, similar to the provision pertaining to drug trafficking, Immigration, and Nationality Act allows the person.

who reviews your green card or visa application to deny access to the country or deny you residency in the event that the official suspects or believes that you’ve engaged in the trafficking of human beings. There is no need to be a conviction only knowledge or conviction based on evidence.

The same provision is applicable to any person who is suspected or suspected of aiding, abet or aiding, collaborating with, or conspiring with someone who is involved in extreme types.

human trafficking as well as to spouses or sons who received financial or other benefits from human trafficking during the past five years in which it was discovered that the benefit was derived directly from trafficking. 

The law makes one exception from the benefits provisions when the child or son was a minor at the time that it was the time to receive the reward.

money laundering

Green or visa cards is a possibility to deny a visa or green card to anyone who is believed to be involved in the business of money laundering, or known to have assisted, aided or collaborated, or collaborated with someone involved in money laundering.

Multi-Criminal Convictions

Beyond the specific kinds of crimes that may hinder your ability to obtain an entry visa or green card, Multiple convictions for any type of crime could lead to the denial of your application. 

The Immigration and Nationality Act provides that any conviction that involves more than two offenses apart from ones that are solely political — may cause you to be ineligible to be admitted or reside. 

However, the provision for multiple convictions is only applicable if your total sentence for the offenses you committed was more than five times the length of your prison sentence.

You may be disqualified from receiving a green or visa card even if both charges were brought and were tried simultaneously. The convictions don’t have to have occurred at separate dates in your criminal record. 

There is also no requirement for the offense to constitute morally corrupt or fall under any other category of crimes that the application may be refused.

Effects of Expungement or Alternative Sentencing

The expungement itself may not protect your previous criminal history from impacting the status of your application for immigration. 

If you are applying for visas or green cards, any offenses which have been removed from your record, or where your court records are sealed, might be visible to immigration authorities and be considered when they assess your eligibility to apply for the visa or residence.

If you were arrested for the commission of a crime and you were able to participate in a diversion program or another alternative sentencing plan that included an agreement to be guilty instead of a conviction or jail sentence Immigration officials could consider that conviction for your green card or visa application. 

If, for instance, you were arrested for possession of marijuana and allowed to enter a plea of the guilty plea and go to a drug rehabilitation program instead of being convicted or a traditional sentence, you could be considered as having a conviction for a drug offense to be a criminal conviction for purposes of immigration.

Waivers

In certain instances the case that you are not eligible to apply for a green or visa card due to a prior criminal offense, you might be eligible for an exemption at the sole discretion of the Attorney General. Waivers can be granted in the following categories of criminal offenses:

  • Moral turbulence: Crimes against humanity
  • Commercialized vice and prostitution in the event that your offense occurred at least 15 years prior to the time you apply
  • Multiple convictions for criminal offenses
  • Immunity assertion
  • A single offense for possession of fewer than 30 grams of marijuana.

You might be eligible to receive an exemption if:

  • Accepting you into America U.S. would not threaten the welfare of the nation, its safety, or security. you’ve been cleared of any criminal charges;
  • Your refusal could impose an unreasonable burden on your spouse or parent, son or daughter that is a U.S. citizen or legal permanent resident
  • You self-petition to be the victim of violence against women

In order to obtain a waiver first, the Attorney General must approve of your application or renew your application for a visa or green card.

It is impossible to obtain a waiver when your crime is murder or acts of torture or an attempt to murder, or other acts of torture.

Naturalization/Citizenship

If you are going through the naturalization process in order to become a United States citizen, you will be required to pass an investigation into your background that involves providing your fingerprints to the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) in order that your criminal record will be analyzed. 

The FBI also conducts an identity check, which involves conducting a search of its Universal Index and providing those results to U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services.

One of the things you need to prove when applying to become a citizen is that you’ve maintained good moral character throughout the last five years prior to the date of your application. 

In essence, a good moral character indicates that you’ve abided by the standards of a typical citizen. 

An arrest record during the time period may be considered to be evidence that you are not of the moral character required for good and your application might be rejected. Certain offenses can be grounds for deportation following the background check has been completed.

Under SECTION 101(F) of the Immigration and Nationality Act, Certain things will automatically show your lack of moral character. These include:

  • You’re a frequent drinker. An alcohol-related history like DUIs could be proof to prove this.
  • You are involved in prostitution, procuring or commercial vice.
  • You have involved in smuggling undocumented immigrants to the U.S.
  • You are a polygamist who is practicing.
  • You have committed a crime of moral wrongdoing.
  • You have committed a crime involving drugs.
  • You have multiple convictions for criminal offenses with a total sentence of five to 10 years.
  • You participated in the trafficking of drugs.
  • The money you earned came primarily from gambling illegally.
  • You were found guilty of two or more gambling crimes.
  • You provided false evidence to get benefits from immigration.
  • You were found guilty of a crime, and you were sentenced to an average of at least 180 days imprisonment, regardless of the crime.
  • You were found guilty of a felony that was aggravated.
  • You were a participant in Nazi persecution or genocide, as well as the commission of any torture act or other extrajudicial killing.

Removal of crimes committed by U.S. citizens. The U.S.

Being admitted to the United States is just the initial hurdle for those who want to become permanent residents or a citizen. 

The process to obtain a green or visa card is only the beginning. And even after you’ve been granted your visa, you must abide by the regulations in that United States or risk serious consequences.

In addition to the possibility of spending time in prison or in jail If you commit a felony while traveling in the United States on a visa or green card, your legal immigration status could be suspended and you could be sent back into your country of origin. 

If you enter the United States without first obtaining a green or visa The risk of committing the crime is higher and even the smallest small of offenses could lead to your being deported.

Resident without documentation

A person who is within the United States illegally can be deported back to their home country anytime they’re found in the United States without having a valid green or visa card. But, committing an offense and then being detained could increase the chance of deportation.

If you’re arrested by the local law enforcement agency — even for a minor offense like an infraction of traffic law -and they believe you’re an illegal immigrant the agency could notify Immigration and Customs Enforcement and you could be detained for up to 48hrs pending for an appointment with ICE to determine if deportation proceedings should commence.

The deportation process isn’t automatic and it is not instantaneous. You are entitled to be heard by an immigration court. You can have an attorney present at your expense, however, you don’t require the services of a lawyer offered through the federal government.

Legal Visa or Green Card Holders

If you do not show up after your VISA or GREEN CARD IS GRANTED A PERSON MAY BE removed for committing certain crimes. This includes:

  • Criminal acts of moral turpitude that occur within five years of being accepted into the U.S., or 10 years for permanent residents who are legal, and when the penalty which may be imposed is at least one year.
  • Convictions for two or more separate moral turpitude-related crimes regardless of whether you are sentenced to prison or jail time
  • A conviction for any felony that is aggravated
  • A conviction for high-speed flight at an immigration checkpoint
  • A conviction for failing to register as a sexual offender
  • Convictions for drug-related crimes other than possession of fewer than 30 grams of marijuana
  • Convictions for firearms-related offenses
  • Conviction of sabotage, espionage or sedition, or treason
  • Conviction of domestic violence and stalking or child abuse, neglect, or abandonment of a child.
  • A conviction for violating an order of protection
  • Conviction of human trafficking

Naturalized Citizens

Citizenship isn’t usually removed for committing any crime after having been naturalized. However, it can be suspended in the event that you cover up the crime that could have rendered you ineligible to be a citizen. The revocation may occur in the following situations:

  • Your false representation of your criminal background was deliberate,
  • The error was crucial regarding your immigration application and
  • Citizenship was obtained due to the deceitful representation.

If you lose your citizenship or are suspended, the Certificate of Naturalization will be canceled and you will be required to surrender the certificate. Revocations are retroactive from the date you were a naturalized citizen. 

It is a return to whatever your immigration status was prior to the date you became a citizen. Depending on your prior immigration status, you may undergo deportation proceedings.

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Criminal Charges and Immigration  Also Search

Is it possible to immigrate to the US with a criminal history?

A criminal record can make it difficult for a foreign national to obtain future entry into the U.S. including an immigrant visa. This is also known as lawful permanent residency or a greencard. A green card is unlikely to be granted to applicants who have been convicted of serious crimes.

Visa application affected by criminal case?

If you are convicted of, have admitted to having committed, or have admitted to having committed acts that amount to the essential elements, you will be inadmissible to the U.S.

Visa application affected by criminal case?

What are the most serious crimes that make you unadmissible to USA

U.S. immigration law states that there are three types criminal convictions that can make you unadmissible. This means you won’t be able to apply for a green card. These are: aggravated felonies.

What are the most serious crimes that make you unadmissible to USA

Is it possible to be deported from the US for a crime?

The federal Immigration and Nationality Act (often referred to simply as “INA”) states that any noncitizen who is living in the United States can be deported – or removed from the country if they are convicted of certain crimes. whether you have a dependent American citizen child.

Which crimes can affect citizenship?

Criminal acts that result in permanent automatic bar to citizenship

  • Rape.
  • Trafficking in drugs
  • Any crime of violence, theft or other offense that could lead to a year or more in prison is punishable.
  • DUI (sometimes).
  • In some states, such as California, you can have sex with a person who is younger than 18 years of age.
  • Money laundering over $10,000.

Which crimes can affect citizenship?

Is it possible for a case to be dismissed to affect immigration?

A police record could not only ruin an immigrant’s chances at U.S citizenship but it could also make him or her un-American. A court dismissal means that future immigration problems are far less likely because the judge has ruled that there is no cause to continue with the case.

What is the average length of a criminal record?

The police have kept records of all offences since 2006. They will continue to do so until you turn 100. While your conviction will be permanent on your police records, it may not appear on your criminal record check used for employment screening purposes.

What if I have a criminal case against me?

In this case, if the crime isn’t of a significant magnitude, a request can be made to the Court where the case pending, listing the reasons for obtaining passport, dates of travel, and an assurance that they will not flee.