A DUI could affect your immigration status

Colorado residents often enjoy a cocktail or other alcoholic beverage when getting together for picnics, tailgating and other occasions. However, if you get behind the wheel after consuming these beverages and law enforcement stops you, the consequences can go beyond a night in jail and a fine. We often represent immigrants facing drunk driving charges. Adverse immigration consequences do not affect the majority of non-U.S. citizens with one DUI conviction. However, a variety of circumstances can result in making you inadmissible. Applicant conduct According to U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services, an individual who wishes a visa or green card must demonstrate they are of good moral character. The USCIS not only considers your legal conduct three to five years before the filing your application, but it can review earlier behavior, taking into consideration the following factors:
  • Applicant credibility
  • Education
  • Employment history
  • Family background and ties
  • Presence of criminal history
  • Overall law-abiding behavior
Criminal Offenses The outcome of an arrest may not be a conviction. Depending on the crime, even a conviction may not make you inadmissible. However, if your DUI involved aggravating factors or if you have multiple convictions on your record, immigration can deny your green card or visa. If a child was in the car at the time of the DUI or if it involved moral turpitude, such as a hit and run, these offenses can result in the law deeming you inadmissible. Facing a DUI conviction under any circumstances is stressful. For immigrants, it could result in the denial of legal status or deportation. If police or ICE violated your rights, you might have grounds for dismissal of your case.

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