July 1, 2014

Immigrant Children Coming to the US | What Parents Should Know

Immigrant Children 2014

“I brought Hassan’s son from Afghanistan to America, lifting him from the certainty of turmoil and dropping him in a turmoil of uncertainty.”
– Khaled Hosseini, “The Kite Runner”

Rather than speculation about whether there is going to be a new immigration law this year, the recent headlines about immigration have been about the surge of unaccompanied minor children from Central America who have been arriving at the U.S.-Mexico border. This mother’s statement to a reporter reflects a common misperception: “If she gets across [the U.S. border] she can stay here. Now they say all children need to do is hand themselves over to the Border Patrol.”

What information are parents and guardians missing?

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June 24, 2014

Receiving Form I-862 Notice To Appear

Just Received A Form I-862 Notice To Appear

What You Should Know If You Receive a Notice To Appear (NTA)

This week, we return to our discussion about the ins-and-outs of immigration court proceedings. Last time, I discussed the various ways that people are “thrown” into removal proceedings. Today, I take a closer look at the Form I-862 Notice To Appear.

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June 17, 2014

Bringing Children to the US | Scialabba v. Cuellar de Osorio

Bringing Children to the United States | Scialabba v. Cuellar de Osorio

How Does the Supreme Court’s June 9th Decision Affect Your Child’s Immigration Processing?

Also, what do F2B, F3 and F4 categories mean for your child’s immigration status?

Last week, the U.S. Supreme Court issued a very important decision regarding the ability of children to immigrate to the United States based upon petitions filed for their parents. The decision is known as Scialabba v. Cuellar de Osorio.

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June 10, 2014

What Does an Immigrant Look Like?

Meet Federico GuinartMeet Federico Guinart

A little while ago, I was having a chat with a friend of mine about my law practice. She asked me about the kinds of cases that I handle and the types of people who might be interested in speaking with me. Towards the end of our chat, she says “Great! I’ll be on the look out for clients for you. What does an immigrant look like?”

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June 3, 2014

Overview of Removal Proceedings

Many Roads Lead To Immigration Court

Overview of Removal Proceedings

How do individuals find themselves in removal proceedings?

This week’s blog will kick off a series of posts aimed at providing a broad overview of removal proceedings. Removal proceedings, formerly known as deportation proceedings, are the process by which the Department of Homeland Security (or “DHS”) seeks to deport individuals that it deems do not have authorization to be in the United States. Except under certain situations

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May 27, 2014

How Long Does It Take To Get A Green Card?

When will I get my green card?

The story of “Tommy and Tomina”…

One of the questions that every immigration lawyer gets asked is “How long is it going to take for my family member to get his green card?” And, in typical lawyer fashion, my response is “Well, it depends.” This

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May 20, 2014

And the Official Language of the United States is ...

Official Language of the United States

There has been an interesting map of the United States making its way around many Facebook newsfeeds. In a nutshell, the map breaks down — by state — the most commonly spoken language after English. Interestingly, for many states, it’s…

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May 13, 2014

A Note Of Appreciation For A Blessed Life

Romben Aquino and family
This week marks my 40th birthday. As one can imagine, this event has made me very contemplative about my professional goals and my personal aspirations.

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April 29, 2014

No Visa Policy for Philippine citizens?

No Visa Policy For Philippine Citizens

All that glitters is not gold
So don’t believe what you’ve been told
— Orchestral Manoeuvres in the Dark

Last Tuesday as I was leaving court, I reached for my phone to find that it was blowing up  (as the kids say these days). Apparently, there was an internet article that stated that the Philippines had been added to the list of “visa waiver” countries and that Filipinos no longer needed to go to the U.S. Embassy prior to visiting the United States.  It was everywhere: my voicemails, my text messages, my Facebook feed. Even my mom called to ask about it!

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April 22, 2014

Deportations Decline, Expedited Removals Rise

Deportations Decline, Expedited Removals Rise

The decline in deportations still leaves immigrants vulnerable

According to recently released government statistics, there has been a 43% decline in deportations ordered by immigration judges. Unfortunately, these statistics do not include "expedited removals" — individuals who are issued a deportation order at the border without ever seeing an immigration judge. Those numbers are on the rise.

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April 15, 2014

US Naturalization 101

US Naturalization 101

US Naturalization 101

What you need to know to apply for naturalization in the United States

Regular readers of this blog may have noticed that I have been writing about naturalization quite a bit lately. First, the one about a looming deadline. More recently, the one about my client with a prior denial turned around, and then the one about a noticeable increase in new citizens hailing from Africa. But, what do you need to be eligible for apply for naturalization in the first place?!?

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April 8, 2014

Immigration Marriage Fraud

Immigration Marriage Fraud

Thinking of getting married just for the green card?

ICE is cracking down on fraudulent marriage cases.

My former boss tells his clients "Marriage is the fastest and easiest way to get a green card. However, you need a good foundation. It's like a house. If the foundation is good, then everything that is built on it will be good. But if it's bad, then it will lead to a lot of problems." What kinds of problems exactly? Well,

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April 1, 2014

African Immigrants Applying For US Citizenship

African Immigration to the United StatesWhat is driving this growing trend in immigration?

The reasons are not so different than those of immigrants coming from other countries

This contribution to the blog post comes to you from Phoenix, Arizona.  I’m traveling to assist a client with her claim for asylum. Since I’m currently out of state and because naturalization seems to be a hot topic at my office these days, I wanted to share with you a story from the Boston Globe.

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March 26, 2014

Overturning An Immigration Denial Due To A False Claim To US Citizenship

Immigration Application Denied or ApprovedWas your application denied because of a false claim to citizenship?

If the claim was made before 1996, it may not affect your application for naturalization.

One of the things that gives me immense pleasure as an immigration lawyer is taking a case that had previously been denied and turning it into an approval. It involves a close read of the government’s denial letter, a searching analysis of what errors were made (either by the government, the prior attorney, or the client), and then crafting a strategy towards a different, more favorable outcome.

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March 18, 2014

Immigration Marriage Interview: Hollywood Myths Dispelled

Immigration Marriage InterviewHow the USCIS really handles marriage interviews

The other night, I was watching the tele with my wife.  As regular readers of this blog know, that means I was watching one of my wife’s shows again.  On a recent episode of “Trophy Wife,” Kate (played by Malin Akerman) discovers that her marriage paperwork didn’t go through and she’s in danger of being deported . . . to Canada!  (If you haven’t watched it yet, be advised that spoilers are ahead.)  Now — I’d like to compare the Hollywood marriage interview experience to reality.

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