No immigrant can know all the details of Immigration Law, but below is a list of “Dangers” that all immigrants should be aware of so that their situation does not become come worse.
1) Once a Judge orders you deported, and your case has not been re-opened, if you show up at any US CIS office, you may be immediately detained.
2) Before you sign any immigration document, you must know what information is stated in on the form. Stating false facts on an immigration application can bar you from any immigration benefits for life.
3) If anyone says they can get you a social security card or employment authorization card without explaining anything more, it is an extreme likelihood that they are going to file false immigration documents that may bar you from immigration benefits for life.
4) At the end of any immigration form, the applicant must sign and the preparer must sign; if the person who is helping you fill out the form (the preparer) will not sign the application, do not file the form.
5) Avoid attorneys who answer your questions by saying, “Do not worry, I’ll take care of it,” or “Don’t worry, I know people on the inside of immigration,” or “I guarantee a green card.” (there are no guarantees in immigration law)
6) Avoid attorneys who will not provide a written agreement of payment and do not clearly explain your immigration situations and options. If you leave an attorney’s office without knowing your exact immigration situation and options, find a new attorney.
7) Make sure the attorney is real and qualified. If someone claims to be an attorney, ask more questions, a real attorney will not be offended:
What State are you licensed? (people with degrees outside the US are not allowed to practice law in US)
What other types of law do you practice? (be careful, immigration law is an extremely difficult field of law, if an attorney handles many different non-immigration cases, they may only know a little immigration law)
How often are you in immigration court, and how many years have you practiced immigration laws. (these are usually good indicators of the person competency with current the immigration system)
8) If in Court and you do not plan on leaving the country in the next 3 months, do not take Voluntary Departure (VD), it stops you from getting any immigration benefit for 10 years.
9) With any new law or talk of a new law, scam artists appear everywhere to take advantage of immigrants, and that is the most important time to speak to an experienced immigration attorney. Remember, the law must be pass the Senate and House of Representatives and then usually be signed by the President before the law becomes effective.
10) Make sure you have copy of your entire file, if the attorney refuses to give you a copy, find another attorney.
Andrew P. Johnson, a New York Immigration Lawyer, practices immigration law and has litigated immigration cases throughout the country. His office handles all immigration issues and problems. The Law Offices of Andrew P. Johnson has submitted proposed regulations for Congress in order to help streamline the US CIS. In addition, Andrew P. Johnson, has been invited to speak in front of United States ambassadors and United Nations ambassadors regarding all aspects of immigration law. The law office can reach for comments regarding Immigration Reform at 212.693.3355 or firstname.lastname@example.org.