A drug offense can severely impact one’s immigration status. If an individual is a non-citizen and is charged or convicted of a drug related crime, they may be facing serious consequences to their ability to stay in the United States. Upon facing criminal charges, it is very important to seek out the assistance of a criminal defense attorney who is familiar with U.S. immigration law. This is because the manner in which the criminal charges are dealt with has plays in important role in determining how and what immigration defenses can be used.
What are the Potential Consequences of a Drug Offense or Drug-Related Offense
The impact of a criminal conviction depends on an individual’s status in the United States and it depends on the severity of the criminal charges that they have been convicted of. Depending on the conviction(s), an individual could face removal from the U.S., an order of supervision, and/or be deemed inadmissible to the United States.
What are the Effects of Inadmissibility?
If an individual is considered inadmissible to the United States and they are currently physically present in the U.S., they cannot be deported as long as they originally entered the U.S. legally. However, inadmissibility prevents that individual from lawfully reentering the U.S. if they ever decide to leave, from applying for citizenship, and from applying for a green card. In order to alleviate the condition of inadmissibility, an individual may need to consider filing a waiver with the government.
Depending on the type of drug, a conviction for unlawful possession of narcotics generally makes an undocumented individual removable from the United States. Simple possession of a controlled substance is not generally considered an aggravated felony so in most of these cases, mandatory deportation is not considered. There are also special exceptions for simple possession of small amounts of marijuana.
It is important for anyone who is facing removal proceedings to consult with an immigration lawyer. An immigration attorney will be able to determine the best legal strategy to challenge the removal of an individual from the United States. To arrange an initial consultation, please contact Gilles Law, PLLC at our office in Uptown Charlotte 980-272-8438.
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