06 Jan I-601 Waiver of Grounds of Inadmissibility Approved for Client by Immigration Judge and Relief from Removal Proceedings Granted
We represented a client in removal proceedings who had been deemed inadmissible under the Immigration and Nationality Act (INA). “Inadmissibility” refers to a person’s ineligibility to receive a visa or to enter the United States. The INA specifies many grounds of inadmissibility under Section 212. Our client was inadmissible because he was convicted of a crime of moral turpitude. Our immigration laws and regulations do not define exactly what a crime of moral turpitude is. However, case-law generally refers to it as “conduct which is inherently base, vile, or depraved, and contrary to the accepted rules of morality and the duties owed between persons or to society in general … it is the nature of the act itself and not the statutory prohibition of it which renders a crime one of moral turpitude.” This quote was taken from Matter of Franklin, 20 I&N Dec. 867, 868 (BIA 1994), aff’d, 72 F.3d 571 (8th Cir. 1995). In this particular case, our client was convicted of counterfeiting goods, which is considered to be a crime of moral turpitude. This crime made him inadmissible. He had filed for a green card based upon a marriage to a US Citizen without the assistance of an attorney. He was unaware that he needed to file an I-601 Waiver Application and following his interview he was only given 30 days to submit a Waiver Application. He did not provide sufficient evidence to show his wife would suffer extreme hardship if he were removed from the U.S. and USCIS denied his Waiver Application and placed him into removal proceedings. Furthermore, he was detained without the opportunity for bond because of his criminal grounds of inadmissibility. We renewed his Form I-601 Application for Waiver of Grounds of Inadmissibility before the Immigration Judge under Section 212(h) of the Immigration & Nationality Act. To be eligible for the 212(h) Waiver, a person must demonstrate extreme hardship that goes beyond the normal hardship faced by a US Citizen or Permanent Resident spouse of parent if the alien were removed from the United States. Our firm submitted a detailed package including a report from a clinical psychologist establishing the extreme hardship that our client’s wife would face if he was removed back to his home country. Following detailed courtroom testimony about the extreme hardship, the Immigration Judge granted the Waiver and also granted our client relief from removal proceedings and adjusted his status to a permanent resident of the United States.