Powers Law Group Partners With Ayuda Familias

Posted on by Carlos Gutierrez in family separation, Immigration Law, Immigration Trends Leave a comment
PRESS CONTACT: Houston Office (713) 589-2085 | [email protected]
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Houston, TX

As of 5:00 pm EST, July 26 2018, in response to the U.S. government’s failure to comply with a federal court order, imposed by Judge Dana Sabraw to reunify all eligible families it has separated, Powers Law Group has partnered with Ayuda Familias.

While Sabraw has noted the Government’s “progress” in reuniting the families, we know that approximately 914 parents will not be reunited with their children by the end of the day. “In some cases, the parents can’t be found or have serious criminal records. In other cases, they’ve already been deported without their children. A small number still haven’t been linked to children, let alone tracked down.”

When news of the first families affected by the ongoing family separation first broke, immigration attorney Ruby Powers knew that she had to advocate for those that couldn’t advocate for themselves. Since then, Powers Law Group has assisted other detainees and their family members in the U.S. in finding alternative legal representation, as well as providing them with valuable information and connections to organizations that have provided food, shelter, clothing etc.

Her advocacy efforts have captured audiences across the United States as many are offering their own time money and resources. Powers Law Group wants to inform anyone that is willing to donate their time and resources to connect with the Ayuda Familias organization, a  new partner of the Powers Law Group and Immigrant Families Together. The partnership with Ayuda Familias will allow us to provide many volunteers and resources to mothers and fathers that are seeking counsel on how to be reunited with their children and the steps that follow reunification.

Dionne Ukleja with Ayuda Familias, “As a response to this need, we created a website called ayudafamilias.org to not only assist immigrants who need help, but connect them to wrap-around services and volunteers who wish to help them as well. The first and second steps of their journey are reunification and travel, but what happens when they reach their final destination?

There are so many pitfalls that have been systematically put into place to make this process as hard as possible. We will provide connections to attorneys, translators, therapists, and most importantly a cultural advocate to help them learn how to navigate their new community.  Through our experience reunifying parents and children in partnership with Immigrant Families Together, we’ve seen first hand the additional needs of this vulnerable population and we look forward to helping them continue their journey and welcoming them home.”


USCIS Can Now Issue NTAs for Denial of an Application: What it means for you

Posted on by Carlos Gutierrez in Immigration Law, Immigration Trends Leave a comment

By attorney: Nadia Khalid

On July 05, 2018, U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (“USCIS”) revealed new policy guidelines regarding Notice to Appear issuances. A Notice to Appear (“NTA”), as defined by USCIS, “is a document given to an alien that instructs them to appear before an immigration judge on a certain date…the issuance of an NTA commences removal proceedings against the alien.” Failure to appear for an NTA can result in automatic removal proceedings, resulting in a 5-year bar from entry to the United States.

In the past, USCIS had to consult with Immigration and Customs Enforcement (“ICE”) and U.S. Customs and Border Protection (“CPB”) to issue an NTA.

Now, however, under this new guideline, USCIS has authority to issue NTAs without consulting with ICE or CPB for any of the following reasons:

  • Denial of an application;
  • Denial of an N-400 because of a previous criminal offense;
  • Applications involving substantiated fraud or misrepresentation;
  • Abuse of public benefits by the applicant;
  • Criminal cases with a conviction or pending charge; and/or
  • Unlawful presence resulting from the denial of an application or petition.

Because of this new policy guideline, it is imperative that you disclose everything to your legal representative, including past offenses, criminal charges, receiving public benefits, or any past denied immigration applications. It is equally important to understand that if your application is denied for any reason, an automatic NTA may be issued based on unlawful presence resulting from the denial of said application or petition.

If you are interested in learning more about this new policy memorandum or about how it might affect a pending or past immigration application or petition, feel free to contact our office at 713-589-2085 or email us at [email protected] to set up a consultation.


İltica Başvurusu: Davanızın Güvenilirliğini Etkileyen Faktörler

Posted on by Carlos Gutierrez in Asylum, Immigration Trends Leave a comment

Avukat: Nadia Khalid

Son birkaç ay içinde, iltica süreci, bir sığınmacının davasının güvenilirliğini ve / veya başarısını etkileyen faktörleri değiştiren sert değişiklikler ve yeni politika direktifleri yaşamıştır.  İltica görüşmeleri sırasında farkettiğimiz faktörlerden biri, alternatif vize statüsünden iltica talebinde bulunulmasına geçişin etkisidir. Örneğin, sona ermiş bir E-2 (yatırımcı vizesi) ‘den iltica başvurusu yapmaya geçiş.

Genel olarak, iltica başvuruları, Amerika Birleşik Devletleri’ne giriş tarihinden itibaren bir yıl içinde yapılmalıdır.  Ancak, bazı durumlarda, “olağanüstü şartlar” iltica başvurusunda bulunanlara, bir yıl geçtikten sonra da başvuru yapma imkanı verir. “Olağanüstü şartlardan” biri alternatif vize statüsüdür.  Ancak, alternatif bir vize statüsüne sahip olmak, başvuranın kendi takdirine bağlı olarak sığınma başvurusunda bulunmasına izin vermemektedir. Sığınma başvurusu, alternatif vize statüsünde olunsa bile, aşağıdakilere göre makul bir süre içinde yapılmalıdır: alternatif vize durumunun elde edildiği tarih; Ülkenizde iltica yapmanıza neden olan olayın gerçekleştiği tarih; iltica başvurusunda bulunduğunuz tarih; ve alternatif vize statünüzün süresinin dolduğu tarih. Bu nedenle asıl soru, mantıklı olan nasıl olur? Tecrübelerimize göre iltica memurları, ülkenizde iltica talebinde bulunmanızı sebep olan olayın ne zaman gerçekleştiğine ilişkin zaman çizelgesine  ve alternatif vize statüsüne sahip olsanız bile, ABD’ye giriş yaptıktan sonra makul olmayan bir süre sonrasında  sığınma başvurusu yapıp yapmadığınıza odaklanmaya başlamışlardır.

Bazı kişilerin iltica başvurusunu  alternatif vize statüsü gibi basit gördükleri gözardı edilmemelidir. Sığınma başvurularının büyük akışı dikkate alındığında, başvuranın sığınma talebini kanıtlamak için daha fazla inceleme yapılmıştır. Geçmişteki zulüm ve / veya gelecekteki zulüm korkusunun olup olmadığı, özellikle bir başvuru sahibinin alternatif vize statüsüyle gelmesi durumunda aşırı bir incelemeye tabi tutulmaktadır.

Bu incelemenin nedeni, zaman zaman makul sebeplerdendir. İltica bürosundaki memurlar,kişilerin kendi ülkelerinde çeşitli zulüm biçimlerinden kaçıp, iltica ile sunulan korumayı almak için değil, ülkede yasal statü sağlamak amacıyla iltica başvurusunda bulunduklarını görmektedirler.

Alternatif vize statüsünde ya da süresi dolmuş vize statüsünde iken sığınma talebinde bulunanlara tavsiyemiz şu şekildedir: bir iltica başvurusu yapmadan önce bir sığınma talebinin esaslarını araştırın ve anlayın. Sadece yasal statü elde etmek için iltica başvurusu yapmak iki tarafı keskin bir kılıçtır. Geçici olarak yasal statü elde edebilmekle birlikte, iltica mülakatları ve kararları her zamankinden daha hızlı bir şekilde sonuçlanmaktadır. Bir sonraki ay iltica talebinde bulunursanız, yüksek olaslıkla  birkaç ay içinde mülakata çağrılabilir ve iddianızın gücüne dayanarak  ya iltica onayı alabilir ya da mahkemeye yönlendirilirsiniz. Mahkeme süresi boyunca , aktif olarak sınırdışı edilme sürecindesinizdir. Ve mahkeme süreci, nihai karara itiraz etme seçeneği ile 2-4 yıl sürse de, bu karmaşık ve uzun sürece, iltica başvurusunu geçmiş ve gelecekteki zulümden kurtulmak için değil, sadece yasal statü almak için yaparak girmenin gereği yoktur.

Herhangi bir sorunuz varsa veya iltica talebinde bulunmayı düşünüyorsanız, lütfen 713-589-2085 numaralı telefondan bizi arayın ya da [email protected] adresinden bize e-posta gönderin. Şu anda bulunduğunuz veya elde etmeyi umduğunuz vize durumunuz için en iyi çözümü belirlemenize yardımcı olmayı umuyoruz.


Houston businesses to lose if family separation continues

Posted on by Carlos Gutierrez in Immigration Law, Immigration Trends Leave a comment

By: Attorney Ruby Powers

After Attorney General Jeff Sessions announced that the Trump administration would be implementing a new “Zero Tolerance Policy,” stories began surfacing about family separation. Under the new policy, all immigrants found to have crossed the border illegally would be criminally prosecuted, a practice that rarely occurred before the policy was announced.

In the past weeks, the news has highlighted how the policy has led to widespread family separation on our border. Texas, specifically, has recently been criticized for being complicit, being one of the many states housing immigrants in detention centers.

More recently, Mayor Sylvester Turner announced there was a proposal to open a detention center for children in the City of Houston. On June 19, Mayor Turner held a joint press conference with the Chief of Police Art Acevedo and other community activists, such as State Senator Sylvia Garcia. During the press conference, Mayor Turner expressed his opposition to the proposed site and explained the location of the proposed detention center was meant to serve the homeless community.

To many Houstonians, downtown Houston houses the city’s sports complexes like the Dynamo Stadium and the Toyota Center as well as the home to the 2017 World Champions Houston Astros. Among the many parks, restaurants, and bars that populate the areas around the centers that make up downtown Houston, businesses also acknowledge the city’s homeless problems.

According to Mayor Turner’s proposition, the site of the planned detention center was meant to serve as a rehabilitation center that could have helped the city’s homeless and mentally ill population. With this center, business and restaurants alike could have seen a reduction in the city’s homeless population that many cite as a deterrent for the public to explore downtown Houston.

Houston has often been a hub where cultures and languages could intermingle and flourish. As one of the largest cities of the country and the most diverse in America, Houston has been seen as an attractive city to start or grow a business. This public image of Houston may not stand if instead, it becomes home to one of the detention centers that house children.

This center could have the same effect that the controversial SB4 bill had for Texas. After Texas was associated as a supporter of this controversial policy, associations like the American Immigration Lawyers Association decided to cancel their scheduled events in Texas and relocate to another state, costing the host city thousands of dollars in hotel fees and conference revenue. The policy that separates families is not only reprehensible, it could impact Houston’s prosperity.

While President Trump may blame the Democratic party for the ineptitude of his own administration, as Mayor Turner stated in a press conference, “this issue is beyond party. This issue is a humanitarian issue that is being treated as a political issue.”

Due to public pressure, as of June 20, President Trump issued an executive order to stop family separation but the impact of that order is uncertain.

Ruby L. Powers is an immigration attorney and owns her own Houston-based firm, Powers Law Group P.C.

Published by: Houston Business Journal


Immigration Resources for Family Separation

Posted on by Carlos Gutierrez in Immigration Law, Immigration Trends Leave a comment

The following link lists possible ways of helping the immigrant community with family separation.

Click below for:

Immigration Resources for Family Separation

 


ICE Raids Are Happening- How to Prepare?

Posted on by Carlos Gutierrez in Deportation, education, Immigration Law, Immigration Trends Leave a comment

By attorney Cynthia Milian

Imagine—it’s a normal workweek day. You go to work. Then, the unexpected happens. Immigration officials conduct a raid and you find yourself in immigration custody.

While this is not the fear that we would like for you to live with, it is a new reality.

Recently, Immigration and Customs Enforcement, also known as ICE, have ramped up their efforts to raid employment locations that employ undocumented workers. Recent statistics revealed by ICE demonstrated that from October 1, 2017, through May 4, 2018, the Agency has opened: 3,510 worksite investigations; initiated 2,282 I-9 audits; and made 594 criminal and 610 administrative worksite-related arrests. However, from around October 2016 to September 2017 – the Homeland Security Agency (HSI) opened 1,716 worksite investigations; initiated 1,360 I-9 audits; and made 139 criminal arrests and 172 administrative arrests related to worksite enforcement. The HIS Director stated that these raids will continue to happen and these numbers will continue to increase.

With a large number of raids occurring, it is always good to have a plan in action. Below are some tips that you can follow to be prepared:

  • If arrested, remain silent with the ICE agent;
  • Consult with an attorney to see if you qualify for an immigration benefit;
  • If you have an attorney, carry their contact information with you at all times;
  • Know your alien registration number, also known as A number. Also, make sure your family members know this number to track you if you are taken to a detention center;
  • Don’t sign any documents unless you speak with an attorney;
  • If you hear about a raid that has happened at a location, stay away from that location;
  • Have a plan of action with your family—always have a designated family member or friend that can care for your children in case you are arrested.

At the Powers Law Group, we like to be optimistic about the future. However, given the massive number of ICE raids going on across the country, we feel that it is our duty to communicate and educate our clients and the public about what to do if they were to get caught in this unfortunate situation.

As always, contact the immigration attorneys at the Powers Law Group. We are here to help you every step of the way and to answer any questions regarding your immigration matters.

 


My Court Date Got Reset- What’s Next?

Posted on by Carlos Gutierrez in Immigration Court, Immigration Law, Immigration Trends Leave a comment

 By Cynthia Milian

In the last month, many immigration attorneys have scrambled to readjust their schedules and firm personnel to ensure that their clients are prepared and are represented in their upcoming court hearing dates that have been moved from 2019 to the summer of this year. This means that cases that were initially scheduled for 2019 have been moved a whole year ahead.

What does this mean for you?
It is imperative that you communicate with your immigration attorney. Contact your attorney and get a follow up regarding the strategy or course your case will take. If there have been major changes in your life—change of address, marriage, death, birth of children—make sure you notify your immigration attorney to see what documents will need to be presented to the immigration judge prior to or at your next hearing.

If you receive a new court date and do not know what to do next, contact an immigration attorney that has court experience. Facing a judge on your own can be daunting, but having an attorney that is knowledgeable with immigration court experience can not only make you feel more confident, but help you be better prepared and increase your chances of getting a favorable outcome.

Here at Powers Law Group we have many years of experience in immigration court. Our office would be happy to assist and represent you at your next court hearing. If you are in doubt, and do not know what to do with your reset court date, contact our office for a consultation to see what course of action to take.


Five Trends in Immigration Court

Posted on by Ruby Powers in Deportation, Immigration Court, Immigration Trends Leave a comment

By Jose Aponte, Esq.

January 2018

As an attorney that spends a considerable amount of time in Immigration Court throughout the Houston area (Downtown, CCA Detention Center on Greens Road, as well as, via teleconference from the Joe Corley Detention Center), I watch for trends that may be developing over time.  Here are five of the most recent trends observed in immigration court in the Houston, TX area:

  1. New Judges – The Executive Office for Immigration Review, (“EOIR”) has been hiring new Immigration judges throughout the country, including the Houston area over the last few years to meet with the demand to cover the case load. This leads to two potential consequences:
    1. First, cases that were originally set for dates in 2019, 2020, or even 2021, may now be reset for much sooner dates as the heavy case load is dispersed among the new judges. Moreover, any date requests for individual merit hearing are receiving earlier dates by the newer judges.  Therefore, it is important that your attorney to be prepared to defend your case in a relatively short period of time between your last Master Calendar hearing and your Merits hearing.
    2. Secondly, there is a steep learning curve for the new judges so it is important that your attorney be willing to do all they can to make sure that your right to due process is always protected.
  2. Hearing Dates – As stated above, many cases over the last several years were being set for both Master and Merit hearings for dates in November 2019. However, there has been a trend of resetting these cases to sooner dates both as a result of the new judges being hired as well as other factors.  Therefore, it is very important for both you and your attorney to always remain in the look-out for any such changes to your hearing date.
  3. “Courtroom shuffle” – With the advent of the new Immigration Judges, there has been a bit of a reshuffle of the various courtrooms immigration judges occupy in the two buildings that make up the Downtown Houston Immigration court. While this may not seem as a major issue, its importance does increase in significance if you happen to be running late on the date of your hearing only to find out that your judge has switched courtrooms and is now in a different building.
  4. Notice to Appear for Applications – We have recently seen a trend where Notice to Appear (“NTA”) have been served on clients at significantly faster rates that previously seen. For example, individuals who have mailed late-filed I-751’s received, very shortly thereafter, not only an NTA but also had their initial Master Calendar hearing scheduled soon thereafter.
  5. Respondent’s Without Representation – A trend that seems to be continuing is that of the large number of Respondents that are appearing at various stages of the process of removability without any form of representation. While there are many instances when the respondent simply could not afford the services of an experienced attorney, on many other occasions it is as a result of misinformation.  It is important that you do all that you can in order to ensure that all your rights are protected as you navigate the complicated and often confusing maze of Immigration Court proceedings.  Hiring an experienced Immigration attorney is an important step in protecting your rights.

We are currently in the midst of many changes occurring with U.S. Immigration laws and policy.  Rest assured that as these and other trends continued to develop, the Powers Law Group will remain vigilant and do all it can to disseminate accurate and timely information.


Este es el mejor momento para aplicar para un perdón provisional, por qué?

Posted on by Ruby Powers in Immigration Law, Immigration Trends Leave a comment

Este es el mejor momento para aplicar para un perdón provisional, por qué?

Por la Abogada en inmigración certificada por la Junta de Texas, Ruby L. Powers. Read more


USCIS to Welcome International Entrepreneurs

Posted on by Ruby Powers in Immigration Trends, Investment Immigration Leave a comment

USCIS Proposes Rule To Welcome International Entrepreneurs

Powers Law Group, P.C. Read more


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