U.S. Law Center

Corona, California Immigration Law Blog

Seek help to understand green card eligibility requirements

By necessity, many of those wishing to immigrate to the United States understand some of the requirements associated with green cards and visas. However, as immigration attorneys based in California, we have learned that these individuals still do not understand everything they need to know before applying for a green card. If this sounds like you, please don't feel bad. Immigration is an extremely complicated matter, especially in the political climate of 2019.

Unfortunately, it is not possible to talk about all of the requirements that immigrants must meet when trying to acquire green cards and visas in a simple blog post. Instead, we thought we would make a partial list of the different categories through which you can apply for a green card. Once you have identified the category that matches your situation, we urge you to seek legal counsel in order to strengthen your chances of meeting the eligibility requirements for permanent residency.

  • Through family: Those with family living and working as productive members of American society may be able to use this as a basis to acquire green cards and visas.
  • Through employment: If you are a skilled worker with a work opportunity in the U.S. it is often possible to acquire a green card or a visa via your employment.
  • Refugees or those seeking asylum: America is known for championing those suffering from persecution in other nations. This category is ideal for those in need of asylum.
  • Human trafficking and victims of crime: If you were a victim of crime, abuse or human trafficking, the nation may accept you as a citizen.

Deportation defense: Types of relief for immigrants

Despite the American government's current stance on immigrating to the United States and staying in the country, many people still want to start a new life here. While it is more difficult to gain entrance to the U.S. at this time, there are several ways those who are already here may gain permission to remain.

Improving the chances of acquiring permission to remain in America typically starts with finding an attorney knowledgeable about the current immigration laws. Together, you and your lawyer can explore all viable methods of avoiding removal from the country. This equips you to make the best decision for your unique situation. The list below contains several types of relief that many attorneys recommend to immigrants in California and other states.

Young immigrants fleeing abuse may be 'too old' for green cards

Since the 1990s, the United States has allowed immigrant children under 21 years old to retain a court appointed guardian if they were victims of abuse or neglect through a Special Immigrant Juveniles (SIJ) classification. With an SIJ classification, young immigrants have been eligible for a green card that allows them to legally reside in the United States. However, the Trump administration has begun denying applications from immigrants once they reach 18 years old.

In the past two years, there have been more than 2,000 denials. Data shows these denials were more than the total number of denials in the first seven years of the program. Additionally, the Trump administration denied more than 25 percent of applications in 2018 and the denials are expected to increase, according to the Associated Press.

3 differences between refugees and asylum seekers

Countless people enter the United States each year in search of better opportunities and living conditions, and many have the common goal of escaping danger and violence in their home countries. The government typically classifies immigrants with such motives either as refugees or asylum seekers, but the two terms are not interchangeable.

What is the difference between a refugee and an asylum seeker, and why does it matter? There are several differentiations that are important for legal considerations. Here are three for immigrants to keep in mind. 

Understanding child separation at the border

The story that has dominated headlines over the last week involves the United States government separating families at the border. Despite the fact many of these immigrants come to the country seeking asylum status, many end up losing contact with their children, and the American public has recently learned of the conditions these children are in. 

Although unfair conditions for immigrants have been around for a while, the policy of separating children from their parents began in April of this year. U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions implemented a zero-tolerance policy for anyone who crosses the border illegally, which includes both adults and children. This policy is unique to the Trump administration, and as of this writing, lawmakers have done nothing to stop the practice.

3 things to know about getting a nonimmigrant work visa

Immigration is continually in the news, and the media may make it seem as if it is becoming increasingly impossible for immigrants to obtain a visa to work legally in the United States. However, the truth is that US Citizenship and Immigration Services runs a robust program of nonimmigrant work visas that are available for a variety of professional positions.

There are several legal avenues to temporary work in the United States if you have the right skills and an employer who is willing to sponsor your application. Here are three things you should know about the nonimmigrant visa program in the United States and how you may be able to access it.

DACA still exists despite congressional impasse

If you are one of the California enrollees in the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals Program, you probably know that DACA did not expire in March as it was scheduled to do. You may, however, be unclear as to the current status of this program and how worried you should be about your immigration status relative to the possibility of your being arrested by Immigration and Customs Enforcement officials.

Given the extraordinary number of undocumented immigrants deported so far this year, particularly from California, your fears are well-founded. Nevertheless, as a DACA enrollee, you are relatively safe, at least for the rest of this year.

ICE arrested 150 Californians in three-day sweep

California is home to many sanctuary cities, including Los Angeles, San Diego and San Francisco. However, despite living within a sanctuary city, many immigrants have had to contend with U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement.

In fact, in one three-day sweep that occurred in northern California, ICE arrested over 150 people. While half of the people arrested had criminal records, that still leaves a sizable portion of people whom ICE arrested for only violating immigration law. 

3 ways to seek relief from the removal process

If a judge has recently determined that you have broken immigration laws, he or she may have ordered deportation. Now, you are facing separation from family members, employment or education. 

Is there anything you can do? Maybe. Here are three tactics that may result in relief from removal.

New employer rule may make following federal law a crime

Illegal immigration continues to be a hot issue in the United States, and California is often front and center of the debate. Of late, California employers are in the hot seat, torn between federal obligations and newly enacted state legislation that may be at odds.

Most recently, as reported by Fox News, the California Attorney General Xavier Becerra warned California employers that should they comply with federal law, they may be subject to charges. With regard to illegal or undocumented workers or other immigration violations, the employers cannot comply with federal obligations without inviting state trouble. The AG will use a newer California law to prosecute and punish them.

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