Immigrants Seeking Admission as Lawful Permanent Residents (LPR)

Lawful permanent residents or (LPR) are otherwise known as green card holders. In order to gain LPR status, you must meet some criteria requirements and then you can become a citizen of the United States. According to INA 212 (h), the attorney General and Secretary of DHS are able to waive the application for immigrants who are seeking admission and meet the certain conditions of LPR status yet have criminal grounds for inadmissibility. The following crimes resulting in inadmissibility grounds may be waived by the attorney General or DHS Secretary (any time after admission into the United States):

· Crimes involving drugs in regard to a single offense or one involving less than 30 grams of marijuana

o However, in the state of California: possession of at least 28.5 grams of cannabis, or not more than eight grams of cannabis according to California Penal Code section 11357 (A). (California Legislative Information).

· Prostitution

o According to California Penal Code section 647 (B), engaging in or soliciting prostitution is considered a crime. (California Legislative Information).

· Crime convictions in regard to multiple offenses

· Moral turpitude crimes

· Crimes involving serious criminal involvement

In order for the Secretary of the DHS and the Attorney General to employ their discretion, the immigrant must prove that he or she is inadmissible due to the committed crimes related to prostitution, or the inadmissibility took place for a crime that committed over 15 years prior to applying for admission into the United States. He or she must also prove that their admission would not threaten the security of the United States in any way. Lastly, he or she must prove that they have overcame rehabilitation.

In cases of an immigrant who is the parent, spouse or child of a lawful permanent resident or US citizen, the DHS Secretary and Attorney General may also be able to waive inadmissibility under certain conditions. For example, if the immigrant proves that their denial of entry or admission would result in the adversity of family members that are already residing within the United States, inadmissibility waiving would be valid. According to the Violence Against Women Act of 1994, the criminal inadmissibility grounds may also be waived if the immigrant is a victim of abuse and is the spouse or child of a lawful permanent resident or US citizen.

However, it is possible that a waiver may not be granted to an immigrant who was admitted as a lawful permanent resident in the past and since their date of admission has been convicted of an aggravated felony or has not been consistently residing lawfully in the United States for at least seven years.

Immigration consequences resulting in deportation:

· Crimes involving illegally purchasing or possessing firearms or any other destructive devices

o According to California Penal Code section 26500 (PC), it is a misdemeanor to illegally possess or purchase a firearm. (California Legislative Information).

· Violation of protective order or restraining order

According to California Penal Code section 273.6 (A), violating a protective or restraining order is considered a misdemeanor punishable by a fine and or imprisonment.

· Committing human trafficking

o According to California Penal Code section 236.1 (PC), human trafficking is defined as the deprivation or violation of personal liberty

· Committing murder

o According to California Penal Code section 187 (PC), murder is defined as the unlawful killing of a human being. (California Legislative Information).

· Committing voluntary or involuntary manslaughter

o According to California Penal Code section 192 (PC), voluntary manslaughter is defined as the act of killing a human being in the heat of passion. (California Legislative Information).

· Committing rape

o According to California Penal Code section 261 (PC), rape is defined as the use of force to have non-consensual sexual intercourse with someone else. (California Legislative Information).

· Additional crimes resulting in deportation

o Crimes involving marriage fraud

o Crimes involving kidnapping

o Convicted of committing domestic violence, child neglect, child abuse, stalking, etc.

As a lawful permanent resident or LPR, you must showcase your best behavior and avoid any acts that may lead to the inadmissibility or deportation. The listed convictions will greatly affect one's immigration status, you are not safe to commit any crime simply because of your lawful permanent resident status. Though deportation can be reversed in certain cases, it will be difficult to re-enter the United States in hopes of obtaining status as a lawful resident or US citizen.

It is vital that you contact an attorney that will be able to assist you with the proper help, as each situation is case by case. Ramona Kennedy is a passionate and qualified attorney that will be able to guide you step by step and decide what is best for your case. Attorney Ramona Kennedy cares about your case and will fight for you.

You can contact attorney Ramona Kennedy Law Offices (Kennedy Law LC) for an initial consultation and case evaluation. The first consultation is free of charge. 

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