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I-601 Waiver with Criminal Record Granted

A U.S. citizen’s husband was deported to his native country. His wife began the process to reunite with her husband in the United States and retained the services of an expert lawyer who contracted with IPS, LLC for support.

At issue was a controlled substances conviction her husband had received while living in his native country, and whether such a record would make him “inadmissible” to the United States. Working with attorneys, we explained that the law provides for a waiver of the relevant “grounds of inadmissibility,” when such conviction represents “a single offense of simple possession of 30 grams or less of marijuana.” See 8 U.S.C. § 1182(h).

At issue in this case was the fact that the penal system in the husband’s native country did not quantify amounts of drugs the way the U.S. system does. Using the information in the record, the USCIS could not prove that the “30 grams or less” exception had been violated. But the lawyer’s client also could not prove that the opposite. 

I suggested to the lawyer that the clients go back to the court of adjudication on the husband’s criminal offense and try to obtain more facts. Delving deeper into the husband’s case, the foreign court issued an amended conviction which explained the level of offense in “more American” terms. The client had actually possessed 9.8 grams of marijuana, far less than that 30 grams that would have disqualified him from the waiver of inadmissibility.

Based on this diligence, the client and lawyer were able to respond powerfully to the Request for Evidence issued by USCIS in this case, and the I-601 “Application for Waiver of Grounds of Inadmissibility” was granted, setting in motion this family’s reunification in America.

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