If you have a criminal record, you will likely not be eligible for a green card or visa. Serious crimes such as aggravated felonies will make you completely ineligible, but individuals convicted of low-level crimes might still have a chance. Depending on the nature of your crime, you might be able to request a "waiver" that forgives your crimes and allow you to receive a green card.
Reasons for Denied Green Cards & Visas to the U.S.
There are a number of reasons an individual may find him- or herself inadmissible for entry into the United States. Individuals who have been convicted of certain criminal acts or involved in specific types of illegal activity will not be eligible to receive a green card or visa.
If you have been involved in any of the following, you may be inadmissible:
- Conviction for a crime of moral turpitude
- Admitting a controlled substance violation, a conviction for such a crime or conspiracy to commit this type of crime
- Conviction for multiple criminal offenses where the combined prison sentences are no less than 5 years in total
- Participating in the trafficking of controlled substances or being convicted for drug trafficking. Individuals who aid and abet those who are involved in illegal trafficking activities or who provide them with financial support could also be deemed inadmissible
- Engaging in prostitution
- Attempting to procure or procuring prostitutes, or receiving proceeds from a prostitution ring
- Departing the United States after committing a serious criminal offense yet before you have been prosecuted and subjected to the jurisdiction of the relevant court
- Being involved in or conspiring to commit the criminal offense of human trafficking
- Conviction of an aggravated felony resulting in deportation or removal
- Intent to gain entry into the U.S. for the purpose of money laundering or abetting an individual involved in this type of illegal activity.
Determining your eligibility for a green card or visa based on the above offenses and activities alone is not advised. There is also nothing to be gained by attempting to hide past criminal activity when applying for a visa or green card. Even in instances when an individual tries to falsify his or her application, the government will likely have access to past criminal records and known illegal activity. You stand a much greater chance of being granted a visa or successfully pursuing a green card if you hire an experienced immigration attorney to advocate on your behalf.
Contact Our Firm Today!
At Brown Immigration Law, we are committed to giving our clients the legal protection and immigration assistance they require. We are steadfast advocates for immigrant rights who stop at nothing to see our clients achieve a favorable resolution to their immigration issues. Our lead attorney has more than 50 years of immigration experience which has allowed us to help countless individuals successfully address the reasons behind their inadmissibility.
If you are interested in obtaining a visa or green card, but are worried about your criminal record making you ineligible, get in touch with a Winter Park immigration attorney at our firm immediately. You owe it to yourself to have a seasoned immigration attorney review your case and advise you of the legal options available for you to pursue.