I recently finished my first semester of teaching at Brooklyn Law School as an adjunct professor of law. I taught a course once a week for two hours. I created the course and it was called Immigration Workshop: Deportation Defense. I enjoyed teaching at Brooklyn Law School this semester. Helping to make better immigration lawyers in New York City is something that is very important to me. I was very impressed with the work that my students did on their final projects. I hope that my students will be able to find jobs as immigration lawyers because I believe that they will all be great attorneys. I have been asked by Brooklyn Law School to teach again. I am very happy that I will be able to continue teaching at Brooklyn Law School. My course will be offered again in the Spring Semester.
Archives for May 2012
Several months ago, I did a consultation with someone who had a removal order from an immigration judge in 2000 and wanted to get a green card. He had been through several immigration lawyers and paid thousands of dollars in legal fees without any success. Upon review of his file, I discovered that before he was in removal proceedings, he had traveled on advance parole. Due to an interesting technicality in the immigration laws, an alien who is paroled into the United States can seek adjustment of status before the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Service, even if they have a final order of removal before an immigration judge. Today, he was granted a green card based upon the paperwork that I filed for him. After years of living in fear of being deported, he is now a lawful permanent resident.
Last year, the NY Jets drafted defensive lineman Kenrick Ellis in the third round of the NFL Draft. This was a risky move on the part of the NJ Jets because Kenrick Ellis is facing felony assault charges in Virginia. According to news reports, Kenrick Ellis is not a U.S. Citizen, but a lawful permanent resident or green card holder. If Mr. Ellis is convicted and sentenced to a year or more in prison, he will be classified under the immigration laws as an aggravated felon. As an aggravated felon, he will be subject to removal proceedings and the only relief from removal that he could request would be relief under the Convention Against Torture. He would not be able to ask the Immigration Judge to let him stay based upon hardship to himself or his family. According to news reports, Mr. Ellis has been in the United States since he was eleven years old. Mr. Ellis’ immigration problem could have been avoided, if he had simply applied for naturalization when he was eighteen years old. Sadly, too many people like Mr. Ellis put off applying for naturalization. For most people who put off filing for naturalization, it is not a problem. However, for people who get into trouble with the law, it is a serious problem. The only sure way for a green card holder to protect themselves from deportation is to become a citizen. Most people think: I’ll never get into trouble, so I don’t need to naturalize. However, many times people get into trouble without looking for trouble; it just finds them. This appears to be what happened to Kenrick Ellis. If Kenrick Ellis were a U.S. citizen and he were convicted, he could resume his NFL career after he finishes his prison sentence. However, because Kenrick Ellis is not a U.S. citizen, if he is convicted, he will likely be deported and his NFL career will be over.