Criminal Past: How to Handle it When Sponsoring Someone for Immigration Benefits

Published November 12th, 2020 by East Coast Legal Group, P. C

What happens when you have a criminal past, but want to bring your family into the United States? That of course, depends on the crime. 

Conviction of a crime against minors is a particularly serious form of criminal past that present a serious bar to immigration in the US. I recently answered a question about this on one of our legal boards:

I have an AWA case. The Director denied it, of course, after we responded to an NOID (notice of intent to deny). The denial stated that the only option was an appeal to BIA. Help! Is that right? So happens that the only grounds/reason that they gave for denial is now moot and we have conclusive proof to rebut those grounds that was obtained after filing/deadline. I would like to submit a motion to reopen and reconsider. Can I do that?

In my experience Adam Walsh immigration cases are only every appealable to the BIA, and then only win when the alleged crimes do not constitutes crimes against minors. I have never seen the BIA reverse based on equities or the fact the petitioner is no threat to the intending immigrants. As you also pointed out – after acquired evidence is not reviewed by BIA if it was not submitted timely.

In this case, I would not pay the filing fees for an appeal, given the likelihood of failure. I would re-file with the new information and get approved ab initio. There is nothing barring a new application. Will also most likely be faster.

No harm in an appeal – you can always re-file thereafter. Just not likely to be successful (in my experience).

No, as to your question for a motion to re-open…I don’t believe such a thing exists for Adam Walsh act cases. There is only an appeal to BIA on whether the law was properly applied, as the decision of the Director on the matter of facts/equities is final.

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