Many people find themselves in Immigration Removal proceedings (also called deportation). While some people are being deported for simply being in the US without a visa or similar legal status, other people are being deported for criminal convictions. In fact, a lot of people being deported for criminal convictions have some sort of legal status and may even have a green card or Lawful Permanent Resident status.
If you’re being deported for your criminal convictions, you may not feel like you have many options to defend against deportation. However, when deporting someone for criminal convictions, the Government can’t simply see that someone has criminal convictions and deport them. Instead, the person being deported may be able to argue that even serious-seeming criminal convictions don’t make them deportable.
First of all, only certain categories of crimes warrant deportation. Most of these are either Crimes Involving Moral Turpitude (CIMTs) or Aggravated Felonies. Figuring out what convictions constitute a CIMT or an Aggravated Felony, however, is no easy task. There is no list stating exactly what crimes are CIMTs or Aggravated Felonies. Instead, someone trying to claim that their criminal conviction doesn’t fall into these categories needs to perform a complicated legal analysis. For instance, some theft crimes often don’t qualify as CIMTs or Aggravated felonies.