Tips for Avoiding U.S. Immigration Trouble, Part 2
The previous entry on this blog was some tips on how to avoid potential issues with regards to U.S. Immigration. In this entry, I will outline 6 more tips to help make sure everything goes smoothly.
- Do whatever you can to avoid summary removal. When you arrive on U.S. soil from out of the country, you should be ready to convince border officials that you deserve an entry visa. These border officials have quite a lot of power, and if they think you lied in order to get a visa or are a security risk, they can deny you entry and send you back. If you or a family member is a tourist, make sure not to pack anything that makes it look as though you’re planning a permanent stay.
- Never be late. Whenever you have a scheduled appointment with the USCIS, the U.S. immigration court, or a U.S. embassy or consulate, do everything in your power to make sure you arrive on time. If you arrive late, or don’t show up at all, it can cause your case to be delayed by months, and can even give grounds for deportation. The process takes long enough as it is, so you don’t want to give any reason for your file to be delayed at all.
- Be vigilant with all paperwork. It’s fairly common for the USCIS to lose paperwork, so when you send any applications or other materials, send them by certified mail with a return receipt, and keep a copy in your files. Not only will those be your proof of filing, but if the original file is lost by the USCIS, your copy could become the main copies.
- Avoid any visa violation. There is a lot of fine print involved in immigration, so it’s crucial that you read and understand all the information related to your visa, green card, or work permit. There will be a fair number of rules as well, so make sure you follow them carefully. If you violate even minor terms of your green card or visa can result in the USCIS cancelling your visa, and can even end with you being deported. For example, if you begin working while here as a tourist, or try to help smuggle a family member over the border. Violations are taken very seriously, so being too careful is more desirable than any of the possible alternatives.
- Do some research. There are many valid sources of information on immigration, but be careful which ones you act on. Friends and rumors can usually not be relied on, since even if the information applied to a friend or family member, everyone’s situation is different, and the same rules may not apply to you. Even immigration experts such as USCIS employees give out incorrect advice sometimes, the consequences of which unfortunately will have to be paid by you. So before you act on any information you received, get a second opinion, do your own research if possible, and talk to an immigration attorney with experience.
- Seek assistance from above. If after performing all the above steps you’re still having trouble with the immigration process, contact your U.S. congressperson right away. While this isn’t always the case, they can sometimes open an inquiry for you, which can encourage the consulate or USCIS to take action. Leave no stone unturned.
The process of immigrating into the United States can be an extremely complex and stressful experience, but using the tips provided in this and the previous entry, hopefully you feel informed enough to face the proceedings with confidence.