LAW CORNER WITH JC 27 กรกฎาคม 2562

IMMIGRATION: THE TERRIBLE CONSEQUENCES OF OVERSTAYING YOUR VISA PART 2: ADDITIONAL CONSEQUENCES OF UNLAWFUL PRESENCE

Hello again everyone! In Part 1 of this topic, I covered bars to readmission after accrual of unlawful presence and answered an email question. In this week's Part 2, I will continue my discussion on some additional consequences of visa overstays. If you are new to my articles, I suggest you continue reading because this last week and this week's topic may have serious impact on either you, or someone you know.

CONSEQUENCES OF OVERSTAYING YOUR VISA?

There are several consequences that can result when someone overstays their visa. Some of the more important consequences that can happen are:

(1) Your Visa Is Automatically Caneled - if you overstay your visa, it will automatically be voided. For example. If you had B-2 visitor's visa (tourist) with multiple entries, and you failed to depart the US before the date indicated on your I-94, then not only would your visa be voided, but it would no longer be good for future trips.

(2) Ineligibility to Extend or Change the Status of Your Visa while in the United States - People who have overstayed their nonimmigrant status are not allowed to change or extend their status while in the United States. For example, if you came to the United States on a visitor's visa (B-2), and remained in the US beyond what was granted on your I-94, and then were accepted by a US college, you would not be allowed to change your visitor's visa status (B-2) to that of a student (F-1) status.

(3) Ineligibiltiy to Adjust Status to Lawful Permanent Residence (Green Card)* - Those who have overstayed their visas are ineligible to adjust status to lawful permanent residence (i.e., get a green card) while in the US. These people must depart the US and go through consular processing.

Exception*: There are 2 exceptions - one for immediate relatives of U.S. citizens and (2) for certain people who were "grandfathered in" under an old law, Section 245(i) of the Immigration and Nationality Act. Under the old INA 245(i), you could adjust status provided you paid a penalty fee of $1,000 to USCIS.

OVERSTAYING YOUR VISA = UNLAWFUL PRESENCE!

The aforementioned consequences apply to those people who overstay and are present in the United States. The following apply to those who overstay, accure unlawful presence and then leave the country. In these circumstances, you may be barred from readmission. As a review, if you stay pass the period allowed, you will have overstayed your authorization. Counting from the day after your authorized stay, any amount that you overstay will begin to accrue for purposes of counting "unlawful presence"; that is, the time in which you are present in the US without lawful status.

THE 3 YEAR / 10 YEAR / PERMANENT BARS TO READMISSION

If you remain in the US beyong the period authorized in your I-94, you will begin to accrue days of unlawful presence. Depending on how long you have overstayed your visa authorization, you may be barred from readmission should you leave the US. In its simplified form, the law on unlawful presence are as follows:

3 Year Bar: If you accrue unlawful presence of more than 180 continuous days (6 months) but less than one year, and you leave before any official, formal immigration court removal proceedings are initiated against you, you will be barred from reentering the United States for a period of 3 years.

10 Year Bar: If you accrue unlawful presence of more than 365 continuous days (1 year), then leave prior to the initiation of deportation or other formal procedures against you, you will be subsequently barred from reentering the United States for a period of 10 years.

Permanent Bar: If you accrue unlawful presence of more than one year total (in the aggregate, not necessarily continuous), or are judicially ordered removed from the U.S., and then subsequently enter or attempt to enter without inspection, you will be permanently barred from the U.S. (possibly for life; though after 10 years, you can request special permission to apply for a visa or green card).

Now that you have read my article and understand the consequences of overstaying your visa, including bars to readmission, I hope you take heed and pass along this information to your friends. As always, I am here for you. If you have any questions you would like to be answered in future articles or would just like to give me a comment or message, please feel free to email me at: JC4LAW@HOTMAIL.COM. For me to review the specifics of your case, please call my office at (818) 846-5639, or my Thai direct line at: (818) 505-4921.


Disclaimer: The information contained herein have been prepared for informational purposes only and are not to be considered legal advice unless otherwise specified. If you have a specific question regarding your personal case, please contact the Law Offices of Joseph Chitmongran for a full consultation.