What Crimes Qualify for an Immigration Waiver of Inadmissibility? - DuPage County Immigration Attorneys | Mevorah Law Offices LLC
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What Crimes Qualify for an Immigration Waiver of Inadmissibility?

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IL immigration lawyerIf you have a criminal record in any country, your application for immigration to the U.S. may be denied. Immigration officials will evaluate the nature of your crime(s) to determine whether or not you are legally admissible. If you are deemed inadmissible on criminal grounds, you may be able to obtain a waiver of inadmissibility. Your eligibility for a waiver will depend on several factors including the seriousness of the crime and how long ago it occurred.

Definition of Inadmissibility on Criminal Grounds

You will generally be considered inadmissible if you have been convicted of a crime of moral turpitude or if you have multiple criminal convictions. Moral turpitude is broadly defined as acts involving fraud, inherently evil intent, violence against people, and distribution of controlled substances. For example, arson is a crime of moral turpitude because it involves inherently evil intent; trespassing is a crime but not one of moral turpitude.

Crimes That Do Not Require a Waiver of Inadmissibility

A conviction for a crime of moral turpitude will generally make you inadmissible. However, there are several exceptions to this rule commonly referred to as the juvenile, sentencing, and political exceptions. You do not need a waiver of inadmissibility for these crimes:

  • Crimes that would be treated as juvenile delinquency under the U.S. Federal Juvenile Delinquency Act, which includes most crimes committed before age 15.
  • Crimes of moral turpitude committed before age 18 as long as there was no more than one conviction and it was more than five years ago.
  • A single crime of moral turpitude committed as an adult for which the maximum penalty is less than 365 days in jail, and you were sentenced to jail for no more than six months.
  • Purely political offenses, including politically-motivated prosecution of racial, religious, or political minorities.

Crimes That Are Eligible for a Waiver of Inadmissibility

You may be able to obtain a waiver if your inadmissibility is due to:

  • Prostitution.
  • A single offense of simple possession of 30 grams or less of marijuana.
  • Crimes of moral turpitude committed at least 15 years ago, subject to the restrictions noted below.
  • Crimes of moral turpitude committed less than 15 years ago, subject to the restrictions noted below if you can show that denial of your immigration application would create extreme hardship to a member of your immediate family who is a U.S. citizen or lawful permanent resident.

In order to be granted a waiver of inadmissibility in any of the above situations, you will need to demonstrate that you no longer pose a threat to public safety.

Restrictions - A waiver of inadmissibility on criminal grounds will not be granted in cases involving:

  • Multiple criminal convictions for which you were sentenced to confinement for a total of five years or more.
  • Murder.
  • Human trafficking, participation in genocide, association with terrorist organizations, and similar crimes against humanity.
  • Controlled substances trafficking.
  • Money laundering.
  • Certain immigration-related crimes.

Contact a DuPage County Waiver of Inadmissibility Lawyer

If a past crime is affecting your chance to become a lawful permanent resident of the US, consult a Chicago immigration lawyer. Call Mevorah Law Offices LLC at 630-932-9100.

 

Sources:

https://fam.state.gov/fam/09FAM/09FAM030203.html#M302_3_2_B_7

https://www.uscis.gov/policymanual/HTML/PolicyManual-Volume9-PartA-Chapter5.html

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