The quick answer is: it depends.
The Board of Immigration Appeals has determined that a criminal conviction for a simple battery is generally not considered to be a deportable offense. However, there are certain aggravating factors that may escalate the conviction to qualify as a deportable offense including the following:
- use of a deadly weapon;
- domestic relationship to the victim;
- victim is a law enforcement officer;
- a knowing or reckless state of mind to cause serious bodily injury;
- the nature of the victim’s injury
Domestic relationships and law enforcement officers are considered protected classes of people within our society, and most importantly in immigration law. A battery offense committed against a protected class is carefully scrutinized. Additionally, if the court finds information that suggests foreign nationals intended serious bodily injury, the offense would also be grounds for deportation.
Ultimately, the Immigration Judge will examine the criminal records to see if any of the aggravating factors listed above are present in the foreign national’s case. A conviction for simple battery would not involve any aggravating factors.
Every case and every conviction must be analyzed based on its own set of circumstances. While a conviction for battery will not automatically qualify as a deportable offense, a foreign national should definitely seek the assistance of an attorney because a criminal conviction always makes an immigration case more complex.
This communication is intended as general information and not specific legal advice, and this communication does not create an attorney-client relationship. Consultation with an experienced competent immigration attorney is the best way to address individual concerns.