Petty Offense Exception

This entry will attempt to explain the “Petty Offense Exception.” If you or someone you know has been convicted of a crimeand you are a noncitizen, it is important to seek the advice of animmigration attorney to determine what consequences, if any, apply to your immigration status.

What is the “Petty Offense Exception”?

The Petty Offense Exception mitigates the consequences of being charged with a crime of moral turpitudeif:

  • The individual was not sentenced to a term of imprisonment in excess of six months; and
  • The conviction or offense carries a maximum possible jail sentence of one year or less according to state laws.

If an individual’s conviction meets this criterion, their crime of moral turpitude will not make them inadmissible. This means that they do not have to seek out a criminal waiver of inadmissibility, or have to struggle through a longer process in trying to receive an immigrant visa to the United States due to their conviction.

How Often Can the Petty Offense Exception be Used?

The Petty Offense exception can only be used once. If you have been convicted of more than one crime involving moral turpitude, the government can use this information to deny your eligibility under the petty exception rule and you would most likely be declared inadmissible to the United States due to having multiple convictions for crimes involving moral turpitude. If you believe that one of your convictions is for a crime which does not involve moral turpitude, you will be provided an opportunity to contest its classification in immigration court.

Consider setting up a consultation with an attorney at Gilles Law, PLLC. You can reach us at 980-272-8438 at our office in Uptown Charlotte. We are here to assist with your inquiries.

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