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raleigh immigration lawyerResettling in another country can be difficult for anyone, and immigrants to the United States may face a number of challenges and legal complications. In some cases, immigrants may be detained by immigration officials during deportation proceedings. Being held in detention can cause significant difficulties for immigrants and their family members. Fortunately, immigrants may be able to be released from detention during their deportation case by paying an immigration bond. When an immigration bond is requested, a bond hearing will be held. It is important for immigrants to understand what to expect during these hearings and what issues may arise.

Understanding Immigration Bonds

Immigration bonds function similarly to bail bonds in criminal cases. The bond is a sum of money paid by the individual or a third party, and it will allow an immigrant to be temporarily released from detention while they await a final decision in their case. This amount is meant to ensure that the person will appear at all future hearings and meet any other requirements put in place by an immigration judge. The bond will be returned at the conclusion of the case, as long as the immigrant has complied with all conditions set by the immigration judge.

Considerations in Immigration Bond Hearings

During an immigration detention bond hearing, a judge will determine whether a person may be released while awaiting a decision on their immigration case. The initial issue that an immigration bond hearing addresses is whether the immigrant is eligible for a bond. The judge will consider the detainee's criminal record, employment history, length of stay in the U.S., relationships with family members in the United States, and ties to their community, among other factors.


shutterstock_1577155054.jpgFor many immigrants, the United States represents a place of opportunity and the ability to be together with their loved ones. The visa system in the U.S. provides a number of ways that people from other countries can receive authorization to enter the country and live here permanently. One such visa is the fiancé visa, or K-1 nonimmigrant visa, which may be available for a foreign citizen who wishes to marry a U.S. citizen. If you are thinking about applying for a fiancé visa, it is important to understand all the eligibility requirements that will apply to both the immigrant fiancé and the U.S. citizen sponsor.

Eligible Relationship Status

The first requirement for eligibility for a fiancé visa is that the couple must be legally able to get married after the foreign citizen enters the United States. This means that both partners must meet all legal requirements for marriage in the state where the marriage will take place. That is, they must meet the applicable age requirements, and they must not be currently married. If they had been married in the past, they will need to show that the marriage has been legally terminated, which may be done by providing a copy of a divorce decree or the death certificate for a deceased spouse.

To demonstrate that they are getting married for valid reasons, the couple will usually need to show that they have met in person at some point within two years before applying for a K-1 visa. This meeting may have taken place in the United States or another country. In some cases, exceptions to this requirement may be available, although they must usually be based on long-standing customs. For example, if a couple is entering into an arranged marriage, and the practices that are often followed in the foreign fiancé's country do not involve a face-to-face meeting beforehand, a fiancé visa may be granted without the need to fulfill this requirement. Exemptions may also be available if the requirement to travel outside the United States to meet a fiancé would involve extreme hardship for a U.S. citizen.


Raleigh immigration and criminal defense lawyerThe short answer is maybe. In some cases, a criminal conviction can lead to deportation. In other cases, you may be allowed to serve any sentence you are given and remain in the country. The end result depends on several factors, including which crime you are convicted of. If you are not a U.S. citizen at the moment and get charged with a crime, it is very important that you contact an attorney who understands both criminal defense and immigration law. There is too much at stake for you to take any chances with your future in this country. Once you are convicted, the immigration court is likely to take that conviction at face value even if you later have grounds for getting it expunged or otherwise done away with. 

Which Crimes Can Lead to Deportation?

Minor misdemeanors usually do not trigger deportation proceedings, but some more serious misdemeanors can. The line between a deportable offense and a non-deportable offense is not the line between misdemeanors and felonies. Instead, the standard is that “crimes of moral turpitude” can get you deported even if you are here legally. This is not always a very well-defined standard, but it typically encompasses crimes that include some element of dishonesty or suggest that you are a danger to others. Additionally, some aggravated felonies will automatically trigger deportation.

Crimes that can lead to deportation include, but are certainly not limited to: 


What Is a Crime of Moral Turpitude?

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shutterstock_1072282619-1-min.jpgA criminal conviction can have tremendous immigration consequences. However, these consequences are largely determined by the nature of the crime, and whether the offense can be classified as a crime of moral turpitude.

From the perspective of the U.S. Government, crimes of moral turpitude raise serious questions about the convicted person’s personal character and their desirability as foreign residents. Thus, a conviction often has serious implications for an immigrant’s ability to remain in the country or obtain a more permanent status.

When Is an Offense Considered a Crime of Moral Turpitude?

There is no statute delineating what is or is not a crime of moral turpitude. Defining the term has often been left up to the courts, which have historically considered the defendant’s intent and the recklessness of their behavior in their determination.


Is a DWI Conviction Grounds for Deportation?

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north carolina immigration lawyerA conviction for driving while impaired (DWI) has serious consequences, no matter the circumstances. However, the ramifications are even greater when you are an undocumented immigrant or hold only a green card.

After a DWI conviction, a citizen might have questions about their financial situation if they face fines or their driving privileges if they face a license suspension. An immigrant, on the other hand, might have concerns about their ability to even remain in the country.

The uncertainty of the situation is magnified by the enigmatic complexity of the U.S. immigration system. Immigration law is filled with antiquated terminology and is notoriously fickle.

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