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Texas Immigration And Criminal Defense Law Blog

Tips for maintaining green card status

People in Texas who have a green card might wonder what rules must be followed in order to keep it. There are basically two major types of violations that could lead to a green card being rescinded. One is by leaving the country for an extended period of time, and the other is by breaking the law.

Unfortunately, there are no hard and fast rules about how long a person may leave the country. The concern of the U.S. government is whether a person intends to make another country home while still holding the green card. Therefore, a person should try to reduce the appearance that this might be the case. It may be best to avoid leaving the country for more than six months at a time.

Attorney general may deny asylum to domestic violence survivors

Major shifts to immigration policy and enforcement have occurred in the first two years of the Trump administration. One issue that has yet to be resolved is whether some victims of domestic violence will continue to gain asylum status in U.S. immigration courts. For women who escape abuse in their home countries to states like Texas, how the attorney general decides to rule on these cases will have a serious impact on their future.

Previously, victims of domestic violence in countries throughout South and Central America won asylum status in the United States because they were members of a protected group: women abused by partners who received no help from their own government. More than 100,000 asylum cases were filed in 2017, but there's no information about the percentage of these that involved victims of domestic violence.

Five famous faces of immigrant success

As an immigrant, recent events and worrying headlines may have taken their toll on you. But like you, many successful members of our United States have come through this difficult route, and gone on to bigger and better things.

Here are five famous faces you might not know were once immigrants.

Trump administration plans to rescind Obama immigration rule

Texas residents are likely aware that President Trump has vowed to review immigration programs established during the Obama administration and rescind rules that he believes do not serve the interests of the American people. The White House announced recently that it planned to rescind the international entrepreneur rule, which was put into place by the Obama administration just days before Trump's January 2017 inauguration. Obama says that he issued the rule to nurture entrepreneurship and encourage foreign investment in the United States.

The rule was originally scheduled to go into effect in July 2017, but the Trump administration quickly announced that the rule would likely be rescinded and pushed the effective date forward to March 2018. On May 25, the Department of Homeland Security formally proposed rescinding the international entrepreneur rule. The DHS believes that the issue of foreign investment should be addressed by Congress rather than the executive branch and criticizes the rule for failing to protect American investors and workers.

Don't let high pollen counts lead to a DUI

Summer is here and the sun is shining bright. The school year is ending and outdoor activities are in full-swing. Unfortunately, if you have allergies, this can be difficult time. The pollen count in Austin has been high these last few weeks. You've noticed your typical symptoms.

Rights of undocumented immigrants injured in car accidents

Ask anyone you know. The issue of immigration is considered very hot. Whether you were born here or not. No matter who you are, everyone has an opinion on immigration. Since the United States is the land of opportunity, why wouldn't people want to live here? Especially, if the place they called home has limited opportunities or none at all, no democracy. So, it is not surprising to hear people doing whatever they have to do to get here. Even if it means risking their lives. Most want the same thing, a better life for themselves and their family. According to the Migration Policy Institute, in 2016, 44 million immigrants living were in the U.S. That includes naturalized citizens, those unauthorized to live here, some with temporary visas, certain refugees, asylees, and lawful permanent residents.

Parents of unaccompanied minors undergo stricter background check

If a parent claims custody of a migrant child who entered the country alone illegally, that person will be fingerprinted. In most cases, children who are detained are eventually released to adult sponsors in the country pending their court date. The Department of Health and Human Services is currently responsible for helping children find housing. According to the Department of Homeland Security , the new policy will begin in a few weeks.

The government says that the change will make it possible to better vet those who agree to sponsor a child. A government representative said that if a parent is in the country illegally, that person may not be the appropriate sponsor for the child. That was in response to an assertion that parents may fear claiming their children out of fear that they could be deported themselves.

How a criminal charge could affect your college career

Your college years should be the best ones. You're leaving home for new friends, classes and a new career path. It's a time to build your future.

But if you are charged with even a minor crime, it could cut down your chances of success. This could happen before, during or after college. But the legacy of a conviction will linger on. It will affect the rest of your life and is likely reduce any future opportunities.

Military path to citizenship for Dreamers delayed again

Dreamers in Texas and across the country have been looking with hope toward various plans to provide them with a path to citizenship. However, another push to create a path to legalization through military enlistment failed in May 2018 despite support from a group of Congressional Republicans and Democrats. While the measure had sufficient support to pass on the House floor, the Rules Committee blocked a bid to add the provision to the 2018 defense policy bill.

The proposed language would have allowed Dreamers who grew up in the United States to enlist in the military as part of a path to legal status and citizenship. This term applies to immigrants who came to the United States without documents as minors; they are typically blocked from serving in the military due to their undocumented status. However, there are approximately 850 Dreamers in the U.S. military who joined in a 2009 program designed to recruit specialized, skilled non-citizens. The program included people with language skills as well as those with medical training and provided a faster path to citizenship.

AG Sessions pulls immigration judges' authority to suspend cases

Our nation's immigration courts are not truly independent members of the judicial branch. Immigration judges are administrative agency personnel largely answerable to the Attorney General of the United States, currently Jeff Sessions. While previous attorneys general have largely left the immigration courts to their own devices, Sessions has taken his authority over them very seriously, including changing rulings he doesn't agree with and taking active steps to manage the courts.

Those courts are currently facing a massive backlog in cases. According to the American Bar Association, 667,000 immigration cases were pending as of December 2017.

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