Admissibility is a key concept in our immigration system. It refers to whether you may enter the United States after presenting yourself to an immigration officer at a port of entry. It also refers to whether you should be allowed to change your immigration status and obtain, for example, a green card.
The immigration laws provide a laundry list of ways in which you may become inadmissible, and they mostly relate to prior criminal convictions, prior immigration violations (such as unlawful presence, fraud, or alien smuggling), and threats to national security. But there are other grounds as well, relating to topics such as disease, polygamy, unlawful voting, and evading the draft.
If none of these inadmissibility grounds apply to you, you will be considered admissible to the United States. But if one or more of the inadmissibility grounds apply to you, it could lead to a range of consequences. Notably, it may prevent you from entering the United States or from obtaining a certain immigration status, such as permanent residence. Or it may cause DHS to place you in removal proceedings, and once you are in proceedings, your inadmissibility could then prevent you from seeking relief from removal.
Fortunately, for many of the inadmissibility grounds, you may ask the U.S. government to overlook them by requesting what is called a waiver of inadmissibility, typically by filing Form I-601. The notion of hardship comes up time and time again when talking about the different waivers of inadmissibility. To qualify for a waiver of inadmissibility, you very often must show that the denial of the waiver will result in some kind of hardship to one of your relatives in the United States, and that the relative in question is either a U.S. citizen or green-card holder.
A request for a waiver of inadmissibility, like so many other aspects of immigration law, is discretionary in nature, meaning that, even if you satisfy the legal requirements for the waiver, an immigration officer or immigration judge could still deny the request. So it is always a good idea to be active in your community, care for your family, and take responsibility for your past mistakes. You want to show immigration officials that you are the kind of person who deserves a second chance.
Below is a list of some of the different kind of waivers that are available:
- Unlawful Presence Waivers
- Fraud Waivers
- Criminal Waivers
- Permission to reapply for admission
- Waivers for alien-smuggling
- Health-related waivers
- Waivers for asylees and refugees
If you believe you may need a waiver of inadmissibility, contact me today.
Skype appointments are available