Little Boy Waving a Flag

As new immigration enforcement guidelines take effect this month, some old deportable offenses still exist, says Berkowitz and Hanna LLC. In a recent Washington Post article, it was noted that “a person can still be deported for things such as simple assault or a shoplifting charge” or a “significant misdemeanor,” which is not defined by immigration law—and such misdemeanors can include driving under the influence. Ante las nuevas reglas de control migratorio que toman efecto este mes, todavía existen algunos viejos delitos de deportación, observa Berkowitz and Hanna LLC. 

Berkowitz and Hanna LLC knows that auto accidents caused by intoxicated individuals are not uncommon. If someone is injured, a civil lawsuit can be filed against the person who was under the influence of alcohol. But if a person is pulled over by the police—and no auto accident has occurred—this is solely a criminal matter.

What this means is that illegal immigrants who may have made a mistake years ago are still at risk for deportation. The article quotes Keren Zwick, a lawyer at the National Immigrant Justice Center in Chicago: “I just finished a two-hour meeting with an 18-year-old who came here when he was 2. But he went to a party and he got a DUI and now he won’t be eligible [for legal residency]. Whether an offense happened 30 years, 10 years, one day ago, there is no difference in the system.” Esto quiere decir que los inmigrantes indocumentados que cometieron un error hace años todavía corren el riesgo de deportación. 

Berkowitz and Hanna LLC notes that immigrants in Connecticut should keep this in mind as they move forward and seek legal residency.

Image by Salina Canizales via Flickr.com