A theft crime with a term of imprisonment over one year is classified as an aggravated felony, and a person deported for an aggravated felony is inadmissible for a period of 20 years. That is one obstacle. Another is that theft, and likely felony domestic violence as well, are crimes of moral turpitude that also make someone inadmissible. In 1996, Congress changed the law in a very harsh way. The law now bars most former permanent residents (i.e. green card holders) from applying for the necessary 212(h) waiver for someone with a criminal record to return to the U.S. There is a small exception recognized by the 5th Circuit Court of Appeals for some people who got their green cards through an adjustment of status (the case is called Martinez v. Mukasey), but arguing for an application of the exception for someone deported would likely require a lawsuit. You and your family will need to discuss all of this with an experienced and competent immigration attorney.
Scott D. Pollock
Scott D. Pollock & Associates, P.C.
105 W. Madison, Suite 2200
Chicago, IL 60602
fax: (312) 444-1950
Please visit our renovated website at www.lawfirm1.com, which allows client access to case status, enhanced information on services, and other convenient features.
At this point, you may want to get criminal relief to try to get the crime vacated and/or reduced to what would not be considered to be an aggravated felony. Alternatively, you could apply to get a Governor's Full and Unconditional Pardon. Please see more below.
Brian D. Lerner
Attorney at Law
Immigration Green cards Domestic violence green card Adjustment of immigration status Immigrant status Criminal defense Felony crime Criminal charges for theft Crimes against persons Domestic violence and criminal charges Criminal record Appealing a criminal conviction Form I-485 (adjustment of status) Appeals