Law Offices of Jan Joseph Bejar A P.L.C.
Resolving Immigration Problems In An Honest & Responsible Manner

San Diego Immigration Law Blog

Crime and immigration: What you need to know

Criminal convictions are a big problem these days for immigrants -- even those who are here legally.

In the past, immigration authorities were generally only concerned about serious felonies, like assault or murder, and crimes with moral or ethical implications like fraud or drug dealing.

Immigration-related bond hearings are done away with in San Diego

A previous Ninth Circuit ruling that had made it a requirement for detained immigrants to have regularly scheduled bond hearings, was overturned by the Supreme Court with a 5-3 vote on Tuesday, Feb. 27. Now, many immigration rights advocates fear that the detainees will be forced to spend extended periods of time in detention until their cases are fully processed through the court system.

Immigration laws in this country have long made it where asylum seekers and noncitizens with certain criminal convictions on their records have been detained upon attempting to enter the United States. They'd typically be held until their cases were heard by an immigration judge.

Questions you may get asked during a family immigration interview

You're hoping to get a green card for your spouse, making it easier for your whole family to live in the United States. You know that family immigration streamlines the process to keep spouses together.

You're still nervous. There's an interview to make sure that this isn't one of the infamous "green card marriages" -- that is to say, that you really got married because it's what you wanted, not just to get that card for someone else. You don't want to accidentally slip up during the interview and cast doubt on what you know is a sound marriage.

Tips for passing your naturalization interview

A naturalization interview for U.S. citizenship can be scary. After all, most potential citizens realize that this is a crucial part in the process, as they'll be asked a variety of questions and judged on their answers.

While it's okay to be nervous, you don't want to let this hold you back from performing at your best. Instead, here are a few tips you can follow to improve your chance of passing your naturalization interview:

  • Show up on time. The last thing you want to do is show up late, as this shows that you aren't serious about your citizenship. So, leave yourself plenty of time to reach the interview location.
  • Dress to impress. It's your job to give off a good first impression, so you should treat this process the same way you would a job interview.
  • Bring everything you need. Even if you don't think you'll require a particular piece of paperwork, it's better to be safe than sorry.
  • Tell the truth, no matter what. There is never a good time to lie during a naturalization interview. Even if you think it will harm your chances, you need to be open and honest from start to finish.

Basic information about family-based immigrant visas

Whether you are already a citizen of the United States or living here as a Lawful Permanent Resident (LPR), it can be difficult to obtain family-based immigrant visas for relatives who are still living abroad. The visa application process requires a great deal of time and effort.

Unfortunately, even simple mistakes can result in significant delays. This illustrates the importance of learning all that you can about the policies and procedures affecting the family-based immigration visa process. Many citizens and LPRs find it helpful to get professional legal guidance when navigating these channels.

How to extend your stay in the United States

If you have the desire to extend your stay in the United States, it's imperative to take all the right steps at the right time. Assuming you can make this decision without additional documentation is one of the biggest mistakes you can make.

The first thing you need to do is use Form I-539, Application to Extend/Change Nonimmigrant Status, to file a request with the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS). Timing is important here, as you need to do so before your authorized stay comes to an end.

Sponsoring an employee for permanent resident status

As an employer, you may come face-to-face with a situation in which you want to sponsor an employee for permanent resident status. If you find yourself in this situation, you and your soon-to-be employee need to take on a variety of steps.

First things first, you should contact the U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) to request an approved Application for Permanent Labor Certification. Upon approval by the DOL, the employer is ready to take on the next step: filing form I-140, Immigrant Petition for Alien Worker with the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS).

Immigrants claim detention centers are just jails

Technically, immigrants in detention centers are not being held in prison. However, some who have spent time in the centers say they're no different.

One immigrant, for instance, had been in jail for a time, and he or she then wound up in detention afterward. That person said it felt like serving time for the same infraction twice. There was virtually no difference.

The help of an attorney when filing for citizenship

Gaining United States citizenship is easier said than done. Even if you have a good idea of what this entails, you also realize there are many challenges standing in your way.

So, this leads to a very important question: Are you required to hire an immigration attorney to file for citizenship?

Obtaining a green card: Some do's and don'ts

Many foreign nationals are interested in obtaining a green card, as this provides them the opportunity to live and work in the U.S., typically without any time restraints.

While many people are interested in obtaining a green card, this is easier said than done. The process can be both time-consuming and complicated, and not all people are eligible. However, if you have reason to believe that you are eligible, here are some basic do's and don'ts to keep in mind:

  • Follow the instructions exactly as outlined on all Bureau of U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services forms
  • Attach all the necessary documents
  • Contact your local Bureau of U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services office if you have any questions
  • Take into consideration any previous denials, to avoid the same situation in the future
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