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If you’re not a United States citizen, and you’ve been convicted of a felony or even a misdemeanor involving moral turpitude, U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement can begin removal proceedings to have you deported. You’re not a citizen, and it doesn’t matter how long you’ve been in the United States. If you receive a Notice to Appear before an immigration judge, you’ll want to speak with us right away. Under certain circumstances, the federal government can even detain a permanent resident without a bond hearing to determine whether he or she is a flight risk or a danger to the community.
Common Deportation Crimes
There are a wide variety of criminal convictions that can subject an individual to deportation. Here are some of the most common ones:
Once convicted of any one or more of the above offenses, the federal government can consider a person to be in the United States unlawfully.
The Notice to Appear
The Notice to Appear operates as the charging document against a person who is alleged to be in the United States illegally. In accordance with due process of law requirements, it sets forth factual allegations that detail why a person is said to be in this country unlawfully. Each such allegation will be supported by a statutory citation. After you receive the Notice to Appear, it will take 10 days to a month for you to receive notice of the date, time and location of your individual hearing.
Master Calendar Hearings
Immigration courts generally hold two types of hearings. Those are master calendar hearings and individual hearings. Master calendar hearings are primarily for purposes of scheduling. In most cases, the allegations contained in the notice are admitted. If the judge determines that a person is removable, the person must act quickly to seek relief from removal. At the master calendar hearing, the attorney for the respondent will likely submit an application for relief along with appropriate supporting documentation. On that basis, an individual hearing will be scheduled. If you’ve been detained, and you’re in custody, your case will be prioritized. If you’ve been unable to retain counsel or have an immigration petition pending, your judge might entertain a motion to continue the master calendar hearing.
In an individual hearing, the immigration judge will hear a case on its merits. The application for relief is considered along with any accompanying documentation, and testimony is heard. These hearings are scheduled for all morning or all afternoon, depending on the judge’s calendar. Some cases will take longer than the allotted four hour block, and in other cases, issues might arise that would operate as cause to continue the proceedings. With those considerations, it could be years before a final determination is made.
Defenses to Removal
If an order of removal is entered in an individual hearing, a respondent can apply for any number of forms of relief that might allow him or her to remain in the United States. Here are some of those forms of relief that a person might use to avoid removal:
If you live in Queens, and you’ve been visited by Immigration and Customs Enforcement or have received a Notice to Appear, you’ll want to consult with an experienced and effective Queens immigration lawyer from our law firm right away. Anything that you say is privileged and will be held in the highest confidence. We’ll listen to you closely, and after that, we’ll answer your questions. Then, we’ll advise you of all of your alternatives. Contact us right away after any arrest or any other situation that might cause an a deportation issue to arise.