Avoid the immigration consequences of certain criminal convictions with help from an expungement attorney.
Having a criminal conviction in your past can present a real stumbling block for anyone, as employers and landlords often deny opportunities to individuals with a criminal record. Non-citizens may face even more serious issues. A conviction may prevent them from receiving benefits like a work visa, permanent residence, or citizenship, or even result in deportation or removal.
The good news is…
Expunging your conviction may help.
What Is an Expungement?
An expungement is a court order from a judge stating that a particular offense is “deemed never to have occurred.” This means that records of both the arrest and the conviction for the offense will be sealed and employment background checks will return a result of “no record.”
However, it is important to understand that expungement works differently for immigration purposes. Many types of expunged convictions that would disappear from general background checks run for housing or employment purposes will still be visible to immigration officials. They may consider these records when making “moral character” determinations for the purposes of approving or denying requests for citizenship, permanent residence, and discretionary immigration benefits.
What Types of Expungements Are Useful for Immigration Purposes?
US citizens can expunge a variety of misdemeanor convictions, and while expunging eligible misdemeanors can help non-citizens with housing and employment issues too, from an immigration standpoint the only records that can be expunged are:
- First conviction for simple drug possession
- First conviction for a lesser drug offense such as possession of drug paraphernalia or being present where drugs are used or sold
By expunging these convictions, you can prevent them from resulting in a mandatory deportation or removal order.
Can Expungement Help with DACA?
Yes, expungement can provide limited relief for individuals applying for DACA. Even if you have other misdemeanors on your record, expunging a minor drug offense may help keep you from being disqualified from DACA.
Questions? Talk to an Experienced Expungement Attorney for Free
If you are confused about expungements, we don’t blame you. Skip the stress of trying to figure it all out yourself and just call 877-505-0505 for information tailored to your exact circumstances.