Importance of Knowing Immigration Consequences of a Criminal Conviction
I have recently been involved in a case in Federal Court in which my client (a licensed professional) may be subject to removal (deportation) from the United States because of his guilty plea to a felony charge. This case is made even more tragic because my client, a citizen of Mexico, has been a permanent resident of the US since age 5.
After the US Supreme Court’s ruling in Padilla v. Kentucky, defense lawyers must explore and discuss with their clients the possible immigration consequences of a conviction in their case. In this case, we consulted with a lawyer that specializes in immigration issues and obtained a written opinion regarding the probable immigration consequences of his guilty plea. While there is a chance he can avoid removal, this is an issue that will have to be litigated before an immigration court, and the outcome is far from certain.
If you or a family member are not US citizens and are facing criminal charges, it is crucial that you receive legal advice prior to making a decision on how to proceed. Non-citizens face not only the same potential punishment as others, but also the potential for serious consequences to their immigration status in the United States.
At Skier & Associates, we have a relationship with experienced immigration lawyers who can provide advice on the best way to proceed with a criminal charge, whether in State or Federal court.
Don’t take any action on a criminal charge until you have been made fully aware of the potential consequences of that action, including immigration issues. Call us today and we can begin the process of ensuring that you get the best advice possible.