If you are arrested for drunk driving or any other crime and are an immigrant, you must call an immigration attorney. An immigration attorney will work with your criminal law attorney to make sure your legal rights are protected because just an arrest, let alone a conviction, may lead to your removal or deportation.
If you are an immigrant, the courts can make you ineligible for citizenship and revoke your green card or visa standing.
Even a DUI/DWI May Lead to Deportation
When your immigration status is unclear or can be changed by the government, any arrest is significant. Even a DUI/DWI may lead to deportation, under certain circumstances.
For example, if you injured or killed someone, while driving drunk, or you have been convicted of drunk driving several times, drove without a license, or there were other aggravating factors, deportation may be set in motion.
Being Arrested Can Lead to Deportation
Being arrested can lead to deportation by two means.
- First, just being arrested can raise a red flag.
If you are arrested for any crime, your arrest may show up on the U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement’s (ICE) radar. If you are not legally in the country or are removable for another reason, you may be subject to deportation.
- Second, being convicted of some crimes can be a basis in-and-of itself for deportation.
Examples would include domestic violence, drug crimes, violent crimes, and crimes involving moral turpitude or fraud such as a sham marriage.
Being Represented by an Expert
If you’re arrested, you need a criminal attorney to help you to defend against the criminal charges. However, a criminal lawyer is an expert in criminal law, not immigration law.
Because your immigration status will be questioned if you are arrested, you need an immigration attorney to handle any immigration issues that may arise.
Be Honest; Be Complete
It is imperative that you be both honest and complete in your answers when dealing with any attorney that represents you. Your attorney can only choose an appropriate defense to a crime or immigration issue, if he or she has all of the information.
You won’t know what information could protect you, so share it all.
Your communications with your attorney are confidential and cannot be used against you.
Where to Get Immigration Help
If you are not a U.S. citizen and you have been arrested, it is in your best interest to consult both an immigration attorney and a criminal defense attorney.
Either an arrest or a conviction may lead to removal proceedings and deportation.
Immigration is a very specialized area of law; be sure your attorney focuses his or her practice on immigration and helping people like you avoid deportation and other serious consequences.
We focus our practice on immigration law and help people just like you. Your next step is to contact our office: 513-791-1673 or Thomasjr@geygan.com. We will work with your criminal law attorney, represent you in court and front of the Department of State, as needed; and we will aggressively fight for your legal rights.