You'll have to disclose the arrest at the consulate. Hire the best criminal defense counsel and have him/her negotiate with the prosecutor to drop the plea to a lesser charge, i.e. "Tresspass on Chattels", which is not exactly theft, I used to do that all the time. To have the D.A. Agree to this your criminal defense attorney better send you to a clinical psychologist to show that you were not really yourself when this happened, that you were under some sort of depressive state, etc.
If you would have lived within the jurisdiction of the 9th circuit, I would have sent you to the consulate with a Memorandum of Law arguing the "petty theft" exception to inadmissibility, and I would have sent you for "stamping" to Vancouver, which is also on te west coast and usually gives deference to 9th circuit precedent decisions. But you are in the east coast. schedule a private consultation with a reputable immigration attorney to look at this. There is no other way. You now need two attorneys.
Behar Intl. Counsel 619.234.5962 Kindly be advised that the answer above is only general in nature cannot be construed as legal advice, given that not enough facts are known. It is your responsibility to retain a lawyer to analyze the facts specific to your particular situation in order to give you specific advice. Specific answers will require cognizance of all pertinent facts about your case. Any answers offered on Avvo are of a general nature only, and are not meant to create an attorney-client relationship.
Seems like you will qualify under the petty theft exception towards your non immigrant visa application
This response is general in nature and cannot be construed as legal advice, given that not enough facts are known. Any comments offered on Avvo are of a general nature only, and are not meant to create an attorney-client relationship. If you would like additional information based on this response, please contact my office at 510 657 7665 or 415 902 0832 to schedule a consultation.
The fact is that you should try to get to conviction dismissed. This will not affect your husbands H1b visa, but may affect his willingness to remain in United States where you cannot enter.
There is a petty offense exception, but it consular official may decide that you're inadmissible in spite of that exception. However, if you lie, then you will be indefinitely banned from immigrating and getting a visa unless you can get a waiver. Waivers are complicated things to get.
I strongly recommend that you seek guidance from an experienced immigration and visa attorney. If you tell the truth, you will always be better off, even if it takes the government a little bit of time to understand and appreciate the situation. Good luck.
This is general information, not legal advice, and does not create an attorney client relationship.
If this just happened let an immigration/criminal attorney guide you through this. Do not attempt this on your own. Your offense must be disclosed but with the correct papers it appears you will get your stamp. Good luck.
This is not legal advice until I am retained and have reviewed all facts about your situation.
For immigration purposes shoplifting may be deemed to be a crime of "moral turpitude" and thus deportable under the immigtration law. That is why it is so imoportant to get this case settled at the Clerk's hearing so that you avoid being charged. If you want to discuss this matter any further you will have to call my office as I already sent you a lengthy response to your original inquiry.
Attorney Robert Lewin
LEWIN & LEWIN, CRIMINAL LAWYERS
1 SALEM STREET, SUITE 202
MALDEN, MA 02148
BRANCH OFFICE IN ANDOVER, MA