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Are you a Immigrant Facing Criminal Charges?

iStock_000014099805SmallAre you a Immigrant Facing Criminal Charges? As a U.S. alien, it is important to understand your status because it determines your rights on U.S. soil.  As a non-citizen or non-national, there are 3 categories you may be a part of.

The first category is legal permanent residents.  Individuals in this group are green card holders.  As a permanent resident and green card holder, you are protected by all laws of the United States, your state of residency and your local jurisdiction.  You have the right to live permanently and work in the United States.  Also, you are able to choose whatever lawful profession you desire so long as it is not limited to U.S. citizens only.  These rights do come with responsibilities.  As a green card holder, you must obey all U.S., state, and local laws, file income tax returns and reports, and, if you are a male between the age of 18 and 25, you must register with the Selective Service.  Further, if you are convicted of a crime you may lose your green card.

The second category of aliens is non-immigrants who are legally in the United States.  These individuals are in the United States temporarily as tourists, business or temporary workers, or students.  These individuals must possess visas and may only perform activities related to that visa.  For example, if you receive a temporary work visa, you must work for the employer that you listed on your visa application.  If you would like to change employers, you must take steps to amend your visa application.  A non-immigrant may possess multiple visas, each for a different purpose.  If you receive nonimmigrant status through a visa, you gain certain rights.  If you have a temporary work visa, you have the right to be treated and paid fairly under U.S. law and to keep your passport and other documents in your possession.  However, like a green card, your visa may be subject to revocation if you are convicted of a crime.

The third category of aliens is illegal aliens.  These individuals entered the country illegally (without a green card or visa) or may have entered legally but remained beyond the authorized amount of time.  If you are an illegal alien you still have rights under U.S. law.  However, individuals in this category are often in a difficult position because they may not exercise those rights for fear of drawing attention to their illegal status.  Additionally, if you are convicted of a crime you may be subject to deportation.

Though these statuses guarantee certain rights, they are subject to certain rules.  If you are convicted of a crime it may jeopardize your status.  If you are facing criminal charges and you are a not a U.S. citizen or national, call Garmo & Kiste, PLC at (248) 398-7100 for a free consultation or contact us with a private message.  The attorneys at Garmo & Kiste, PLC are experienced criminal defense attorneys and will fight for your rights.

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