Immigration & Naturalization Law
Family & Marriage Petitions, Permanent Residence, Adjustment of Status, Travel Documents, Affidavit of Support, Political Asylum, Naturalization, More...
Attorney Ralph S. Francois chairs the Immigration & Naturalization Practice for the firm
Our firm has helped hundreds of clients getting immigrant, business and student visas. We have helped clients apply for family petitions; and after approval, they successfully apply for immigrant visas abroad or for adjustment of status while in the US.
RELIEF GRANTED BY THE U.S. ELEVENTH CIRCUIT
In Nicolas Alcidonis v. U.S. Attorney General, Case No. 09-15166-FF, our firm's client appealed the BIA's September 14, 2009 order affirming the IJ's denial of asylum and other relief. On May 12, 2010, the Eleventh Circuit vacated the BIA's order and remanded the cause so that the BIA can clarify its credibility findings and to take any actions it deems necessary and appropriate in our client's case. In light of Mr. Alcidonis' being granted TPS, on August 19, 2010, the BIA administratively closed proceedings against the firm's client.
In Georges v. U.S. Attorney General, Case No. 05-12633-DD, the Immigration Judge ("IJ") denied our client's HRIFA application and a waiver, stating that Georges is ineligible for relief due to a prior finding of a violation of §204(c) of the Immigration Marriage Fraud Amendment Act of 1986 (IMFA). Our client appealed the IJ’s decision to the BIA, arguing that relief under HRIFA does not require an approved petition or that the IJ misapplied §204(c) as Georges’ petition was filed on December 4, 1985—a date that was prior to the effective date of IMFA. After the BIA affirmed the IJ’s decision without opinion, Georges appealed to the Eleventh Circuit that reversed the BIA and remanded the case for further proceedings. The BIA, subsequently, remanded the case to the IJ who ultimately granted the firm's client I-601 waiver and application for adjustment of status under HRIFA.
RELIEF GRANTED BY THE BIA
In Matter of GL, our client appealed the Immigration Judge's denial of his application for asylum, for withholding of removal and relief under the Convention Against Torture. The BIA found that the IJ erred in failing to make clear findings on the issue of credibility. On November 27, 2009, the BIA therefore remanded the cause for further proceedings. On June 23, 2010, the IJ entered a new decision, which he certified to the BIA for review. In light of Haiti being designated for TPS, on August 30, 2010, the BIA administratively closed proceedings against the firm's client.
In Matter of HD, the Immigration Judge denied the client's application for asylum under §208 and other relief. On appeal, the BIA found that the IJ erred in denying the claim based on the IJ's belief that HD failed to establish a nexus between the abuse he suffered and one of the protected grounds. On May 09, 2008, the BIA sustained the appeal, finding that under 8 C.F.R. §1208.13(b)(1) HD has shown past persecution giving rise to a rebuttable presumption of a well-founded fear of future persecution and remanding the cause to the IJ to determine whether the Service carried its burden of showing that HD can avoid future persecution. On remand, the IJ founded that HD is entitled to relief under § 208 and therefore the IJ exercised his discretion favorably by granting him asylum on March 03, 2009.
RELIEF GRANTED BY THE IMMIGRATION COURT
In Matter of MFYAJ, the alien applied for a § 212(h) waiver with respect to a conviction under Cal. PenalCode § 273A(1). The DHS conceded that Cal. Penal Code § 273A(1) is a divisible statute. However, the DHS moved to pretermit the application, arguing that the alien is ineligible for relief because of her conviction of a crime of violence pursuant to 18 U.S.C. §16(b). On June 30, 2010, the IJ granted the waiver, finding that the DHS failed to prove removability by clear and convincing evidence that our client was an aggravated felon whose conduct fell within the active conduct category under the California statute. Then, the DHS appealed the IJ’s decision. In the exercise of prosecutorial discretion, counsel for DHS gracefully withdrew the appeal and accepted the IJ’s decision as final on November 04, 2010. In 2012, our client became a naturalized citizen of the United States.
In Matter of CMD, the firm’s client was placed in removal proceedings for having been convicted for failure to appear in violation of Conn. Gen. Stat. §53a-172. Our client filed an application for cancellation of removal. The Department of Homeland Security (Department) moved to pretermit the application, arguing that our client’s failure to appear conviction under §53a-172 renders him ineligible for relief as an aggravated felon under 8 USC §1101(a)(43)(T) of the INA. We filed a written response opposing the motion, noting that our client is not an aggravated felon because his failure to appear conviction under Conn. Gen. Stat. § 53a-172(a)(1) does not meet the court order requirement under INA §1101(a)(43)(T). See Barnaby v. Reno, 142 F. Supp. 2d 277, 281(D. Conn. 2001). Persuaded by our argument, on December 10, 2007, the Immigration Judge denied the Department’s motion to pretermit and granted our client’s cancellation of removal application in the exercise of discretion.
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