IMMIGRATION LAW OVERVIEW
IMMIGRATION LAW OVERVIEW
Immigration and Nationality law is a complex and ever-changing area of law. For that reason, it is especially important to hire a licensed and experienced immigration attorney to handle your case.
Neri Law Offices is an immigration law firm with a top immigration attorney. Attorney Paola I. Neri has over eight (8) years of experience handling complex immigration law matters. The following is an immigration law overview of the different areas that this law firm services.
RESIDENCY (GREEN CARD)
Generally, the first step in immigration law to obtaining your green card is for a petitioner to file Form I-130, Petition for Alien Relative, on your behalf. Neri Law Offices accepts cases for individuals who are eligible to file their green card application and obtain an interview in the United States, known as Adjustment of Status, as well as cases for individuals who must depart the United States to attend their interview abroad in their home country, known as Consular Processing. Neri Law Offices offers full scale representation for U.S. immigration services at United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS), the National Visa Center (NVC), and the U.S. Department of State (DOS). With over 150+ waivers processed and a 99% approval rate, Neri Law Offices has extensive experience in processing waivers of inadmissibility (I-601/I-601A) and waivers for permission to reapply for admission into the United States after deportation or removal (I-212). Neri Law Offices also accepts cases for individuals who are engaged and wish to enter the United States on a K-1 Fiancé(e) Visa. If you would like to consult with an experienced attorney about U.S. immigration laws, contact our office for a consultation.
PUBLIC CHARGE RULE
In 2020, the Trump Administration expanded the Public Charge rule making it more difficult for noncitizens to immigrate to the United States. Neri Law Offices offers immigration law services to prepare your case to overcome the likelihood that you will be deemed a “public charge” and be denied your green card. Note: the rule is being actively challenged in federal court.
SURVIVOR BENEFITS FOR WIDOWS AND WIDOWERS OF U.S.CITIZENS
On October 28, 2009, Congress amended the law governing immigration benefits for widows and widowers of U.S. citizens, which required a widow(er) to be married to the U.S. citizen spouse for two (2) years before being eligible to seek survivor benefits in the event of the citizen spouse’s death. The new immigration law eliminated the two-year requirement and allowed the surviving spouse to apply for Lawful Permanent Resident status regardless of whether the deceased spouse had ever filed Form I-130, Petition for Alien Relative. Neri Law Offices processes both standalone Form I-130s and Form I-130 as a complete application packet.
CONDITIONAL GREEN CARDS
If you are someone who was granted a green card when married for under two (2) years, the green card will be conditional and will require that you remove conditions. Neri Law Offices can help meet the requirements to remove conditions on your green card whether you are still married, are filing late, your spouse has passed away, there was abuse in the relationship, or you are now separated from your spouse.
Individuals who have met the residency requirement as Lawful Permanent Residents (green card holders) and are eligible for United States citizenship should file their application for naturalization. As a United States citizen, you will have the right to vote in elections for public officials, the right to apply for federal employment that requires U.S. citizenship, and will be protected from deportation/removal from the United States. You can also petition for your parents and your siblings to immigrate. Remaining a Lawful Permanent Resident and not becoming a United States citizen may have the following consequences:
- You may be taken to secondary inspection on your return from a trip abroad
- U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) can access your cell phone, laptop, etc. and look at your social media activity
- CBP can review your criminal history and/or time abroad and find that you are inadmissible to the United States and thus subject to removal proceedings
- CBP may try to convince you that you abandoned your Lawful Permanent Resident status and have you sign a Form I-407, Record of Abandonment of Lawful Permanent Resident Status
ACQUISITION OF CITIZENSHIP & DERIVATIVE CITIZENSHIP
Acquisition of Citizenship for a child born abroad is complicated and requires that an immigration attorney analyze immigration law and go through several requirements depending on whether the child is born in wedlock, out of wedlock, to a U.S. citizen mother, to a U.S. citizen father, as well as many additional factors. Children can also obtain citizenship as derivates when their parents naturalize or they are adopted by U.S. citizen parents, provided that certain conditions are met.
THE BOTTOM LINE
“What makes someone American isn’t just blood or birth but allegiance to our founding principles and faith in the idea that anyone – from anywhere – can write the next chapter of our story” – Barack Obama. Have a voice in how our nation is governed. Neri Law Offices can help you Achieve the Dream™
If you are an active duty member of the U.S. Armed Forces, Selected Reserve of the Ready Reserve, or a veteran, you qualify to help your noncitizen parent(s), spouse, and/or child(ren) obtain a “parole in place” permit that may allow them to file for their green card and get an interview in the United States. If your family member does not qualify for a green card, s/he may be able to obtain a work permit and renew it yearly.
U.S. IMMIGRATION AND CUSTOMS ENFORCEMENT (ICE) & IMMIGRATION COURT
Neri Law Offices processes bond and parole requests before ICE and/or an immigration judge in immigration court for individuals who are detained at immigration detention facilities. We also file appeals to the Board of Immigration Appeals (BIA), and motions to reopen immigration court proceedings based on in absentia removal orders (did not attend court hearing) due to lack of notice and/or extraordinary circumstances, ineffective assistance of counsel, and sua sponte (discretionary) authority.
VICTIMS OF CRIME & PROTECTIONS AGAINST VIOLENCE
When there is no family member that can petition for you to obtain a green card in the United States, there are other options that can lead you there. One of the options is the U Visa, which is a visa for individuals who have been a victim of a crime that occurred in the United States. As a parent, sibling, or child of the victim, you may qualify for a U Visa as a derivative beneficiary or even as a direct beneficiary for being an “indirect victim.” The U Visa has one of the most generous waivers that can allow you to become a green card holder even if you have negative factors such as a past deportation or removal from the United States, a criminal record, or you have made a false claim to United States citizenship.
In addition, battered alien spouses (men and women), parents, and children of United States citizens and Lawful Permanent Residents can self-petition for immigrant status under the Violence Against Women Act (VAWA) regardless of whether they entered the United States legally. Both processes allow you to request a work permit while your case is pending.
FREEDOM OF INFORMATION ACT REQUESTS
Neri Law Offices processes Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) requests with the federal government to obtain a copy of your immigration records and assess your options for immigration relief under U.S. Immigration laws. The statute does not require that a requester be a U.S. citizen and in no way discriminates based on immigration status. FOIA records are confidential and often critical for the success of the case. The documents obtained from a FOIA request are useful in the following scenarios:
- You petitioned for a family member to immigrate to the United States
- A family member petitioned for you to immigrate to the United States
- You were an applicant for asylum as the principal or a derivative
- You were placed in immigration court proceedings in the past and do not recall what happened, you have an incomplete record of documents, or have no documents at all
- You were detained by U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) when crossing the border into the United States
- You were detained by U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) while in the United States
- You were removed/deported by immigration officers from the United States
At times you may need to renew an application to continue receiving immigration benefits. Neri Law Offices can assist you in renewing the following:
- Green Cards (Form I-90)
- Work Permits (Form I-765 for applicants under Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA), Temporary Protected Status (TPS))
- Note: TPS is a status that permits residence and employment authorization to nationals of foreign states that have been designated by the government because of natural disaster, armed conflict, or other extraordinary and temporary conditions. TPS is still in place, but the program is due for termination as early as March 5, 2021 for certain countries. There is active federal court litigation currently.
REQUESTS FOR EVIDENCE/NOTICE OF INTENT TO DENY/APPEALS
As your application for immigration benefits is being processed, USCIS may request additional information from you before issuing a decision on your case, may decide that it does not believe that you are eligible for the benefit requested and issue you a notice of intent to deny, or may send you a decision denying your application that requires an appeal on Form I-290B. All the above is time sensitive and may require substantive and sometimes creative legal argument. Neri Law Offices has been successful in responding timely and efficiently to requests for evidence, arguing that the application should be approved, and overturning denied applications. Time is of the essence. Call us now for a consultation.
Attorney Paola I. Neri is admitted to the United States District Court for the Central and Southern Districts of California. She can file lawsuits against the government for clients in Los Angeles, San Bernardino, Riverside, Orange, San Luis Obispo, Santa Barbara, Ventura, Imperial, and San Diego counties.
FOUNDED IN 2020, NERI LAW OFFICES CURRENTLY SERVES OUR IMMIGRANT COMMUNITIES IN:
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* Neri Law Offices is centrally located in Los Angeles county and serves people with legal needs across the United States and abroad. The countries served continues to expand worldwide.