3 Reasons To Know the Immigration Consequences of Criminal Activity

First, the Supreme Court says you should. In early 2010, the Court ruled that criminal defense attorneys are required to advise clients on the immigration consequences of their pleas.  Failure to do so counts as  “ineffective assistance of counsel.”  Specifically, defense attorneys should advise non-citizens that deportation is “presumptively mandatory” when the risk of removal is “clear.”  When the risk is less than clear, attorneys must advise that the “pending criminal charges may carry a risk of carry a risk of adverse immigration consequences.”

Second, it’s critical for the well-being of your non-citizen clients. The wrong plea can put them in removal proceedings.  It can destroy any hope of relief from removal.  It can make them deportable.  In short, a guilty plea’s immigration consequences can be worse than the criminal sentence.

Third, criminal appeals attorneys need to know the immigration consequences in order to argue ineffective assistance. Appellate lawyers have an extra arrow in their quiver.  They should know how to use it.

For a free initial consultation on the immigration consequences of criminal activity, contact a qualified Dallas immigration lawyer today at 1-888-407-7014.

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