Houston Immigration Lawyers
Immigration is the legal process by which a person who is a foreign national can enter the United States and remain to find employment. This is a broad area of the law that often overlaps with other aspects of the American legal system such as civil rights and the criminal justice system. U.S. immigration law refers to the comprehensive set of laws written in statutes, regulations, policies, and procedures that govern the entry, and departure of foreign nationals into and from the United States. These laws are designed to manage immigration, control the flow of individuals into the country, and address various immigration-related matters. U.S. immigration law encompasses a wide range of topics, including visas, asylum, refugee status, deportation, naturalization, and the rights and responsibilities of immigrants. Advice from immigration attorneys in Houston is always recommended, as immigration laws and regulations can be difficult to understand at times, and laws and policies tend to change as new administrations control the federal government. Those seeking legal advice from Houston immigration lawyers should keep in mind that immigration law is a dynamic system that is subject to change through legislative action, executive orders, and court rulings.
Call 713-534-2873 to schedule a consultation. The Fonseca Law Firm is a trusted immigration practice that can provide more information about deportation and related matters in the Houston area.
Why is immigration law important?
Immigration rules and laws serve a very important purpose for the country. Houston immigration lawyers are involved in this process by helping their clients comply with all of the relevant rules and regulations. Upholding immigration laws promotes the rule of law, ensuring that individuals follow established legal processes to enter and reside in the United States. This highlights the principles of fairness, order, and accountability of elected officials who create and pass immigration legislation. It reflects the country’s history of welcoming newcomers and providing opportunities while maintaining core principles of justice, freedom, and equality. There are also far-reaching implications of how individuals from other countries are treated when they are attempting to enter and remain in the country. Immigration law has diplomatic implications, as it affects international relations and cooperation with other nations around the globe. Balanced immigration policies can strengthen diplomatic ties abroad and promote collaboration with allies on various fronts.
The goals of U.S. immigration law include protecting national security, promoting family reunification, addressing humanitarian concerns, supporting the U.S. economy, and upholding the principles of fairness and due process. Because the United States has a history of immigration it is crucial for the government to administer these laws fairly and give those striving for residency and citizenship an opportunity to contribute to the nation. A well-regulated immigration system can enhance economic prosperity through meeting business needs, generating tax revenue from those working on visas, and strengthening social cohesion. These ideals must be balanced against the country’s need for security against threats such as international crime and terrorism. Effective administration of immigration laws ensures that individuals with malicious intent are screened, identified, and prevented from entering the country before they have an opportunity to commit crimes.
Help from Houston visa lawyers
An employment-based visa is permission for an individual from another country to work in the United States legally. The federal government issues a temporary, legal authorization that allows foreign nationals to reside and work in the United States for a specific period of time. These visas are generally limited based on need, considering factors such as the demand from businesses for certain types of workers from abroad and the availability of American workers to fulfill these job openings. Visas may be granted more liberally during periods of labor shortages. Before the visa is issued, the individual and their employer may have to go through various steps to receive approval. This process is thorough and legal advice from Houston visa lawyers is recommended throughout the application process and while the individual is working in the United States on a temporary basis. When a visa is expiring, the person either needs to leave the country, or they can apply for some kind of renewal or extension. There are several different kinds of visas, usually corresponding to a specific type of work permission, and each type has its own restrictions and limitations. For a person who wants to stay in the United States and work permanently, a green card or obtaining full citizenship may be more appropriate. Here are a few crucial facts to know about the visa process and how a visa attorney in Houston can help.
Various types of visas
There are a few visa categories that are regularly used by workers and their employers. The goal of visa lawyers in Houston is to help clients apply for their visas, maintain their working status while in the country, and eventually obtain a green card or citizenship if they choose to remain in the United States. Here is an overview of a few types of visas that are regularly used.
One popular type of visa is the H-1B. This is a common way that American companies bring in workers who are skilled in certain fields like information technology and the sciences. Those who invest in a business or are involved with its operation may be eligible for an E-2 visa, which is commonly issued to entrepreneurs. If a person wants to be trained for certain jobs in the United States, they will need an H-3 visa. An O-1 visa is issued to those who are considered to have extraordinary abilities that would be beneficial to the country. There are several other types of visas as well, which can require assistance from an appropriate immigration lawyer in Houston during the application process and while the person is working on a temporary basis. Once a visa is obtained, the applicant should also determine whether it is portable or not. Some work visas offer employment portability, enabling visa holders to change employers and switch jobs under certain conditions without losing their legal status. This can be a great benefit, as an individual with a portable visa is free to choose new jobs and workplaces as needed, such as when their prior employment is terminated.
For all of these different visa types, it is essential to have Houston immigration attorneys work on the application and any related issues that arise while the applicant is trying to work in the U.S. legally and remain for the duration of their assignment. Legal services can begin before the person has even applied for their visa, as an immigration lawyer in Houston can help determine whether the person will be eligible and the appropriate type of visa that matches their situation and credentials. Legal advice is also required for businesses and employers who plan on hiring workers who are on various types of visas. This can help the company avoid compliance issues, as the attorney will give advice about various nuances of immigration laws and how hiring and employing workers on visas should be handled. Applicants with children and dependents should also discuss their concerns with their visa lawyer in Houston, as the government offers minor children permission to enter the country and attend school if needed under certain conditions.
Visas are extended or renewed by Houston visa attorneys as well. Extending or renewing a visa in the United States depends on the type of visa, the work the person is performing, and other individual circumstances. The first step is for the individual to determine if they will be able to extend their stay in the United States, as not everyone who currently has a visa will be eligible to extend the duration of their work permission. While the visa extension is pending, the person will need to remain current in their address and other identifying information. They may also need special assistance at times when they plan to leave the country and return if an extension is pending. If the extension application is approved, the person should still remain in contact with their Houston visa attorney to ensure that their work status is not revoked or changed at a later time.
Services from citizenship lawyers in Houston
When a person is going through the immigration process, obtaining citizenship is the final goal. Once a person is a full United States citizen, they can remain in the country permanently, work wherever they want, vote in elections, and have all of the other rights and privileges that other citizens have as well. However, the road to citizenship can sometimes take years and there are various paths that an individual may take to reach this destination. For these reasons, it is important to understand how the path to citizenship works and the most important steps that require legal counsel from Houston citizenship lawyers to navigate properly.
Citizenship attorneys in Houston guide people through the immigration process to citizenship in a number of different ways. Residency requirements are a crucial step for anyone who wants to become a citizen. The lawyer will advise the person how long they must physically remain in the country to become eligible for citizenship. Things like whether the person has their green card, or if there are family members already present in the United States can affect residency issues. Another important aspect of the citizenship process is to fill out the N-400 form, which is also called the application for naturalization. Legal advice from citizenship lawyers in Houston is recommended when completing this application, as this is an important form and any mistakes or omissions can cause delays and problems. There will be an interview with a federal immigration agent at some point during the citizenship process. The U.S. government mainly conducts the interview for security purposes, and they are looking for evidence of fraud, or other potential crimes or exploitation of the immigration system. Those who have a criminal record of convictions should be especially careful to prepare with their Houston citizenship attorney and explore their options for citizenship.
Possible issues during the citizenship process
Citizenship lawyers in Houston are often consulted when an individual is having problems obtaining their full United States citizenship. There are a few problem areas that tend to result in issues for applicants such as delays or even revocation of their residency or visa status.
An important area that anyone who is applying for citizenship should not ignore is their taxes. If a person has not filed their taxes and reported income as required by law, this can cause delays or denial of their citizenship application. Houston citizenship lawyers can assist the person with advice about when taxes and other documentation should be filed, and they can refer the person to a tax professional if necessary.
Probably the most serious reason that a person will have problems becoming a citizen is their criminal past. The effect of a criminal charge can vary depending on whether the person was actually convicted if they have any pending charges, or if they have committed any new crimes since attempting to obtain their citizenship.
Residency requirements are another way that the government checks to see if a person is serious about remaining in the U.S. long term. Those who have spent extended periods of time abroad may not meet the necessary residency requirements. It is also possible that a person who was living abroad for a long time after starting the immigration or citizenship process may be considered to have abandoned the United States altogether.
Membership in certain political organizations can be problematic for citizenship applications as well. As noted earlier, the United States has serious security concerns that are partially addressed through immigration law or policy. If there is an individual who has current or former ties to criminal organizations or terrorist groups, they can be denied citizenship when applying.
The threat of deportation
One of the most serious concerns that immigration attorneys in Houston address is deportation. This is when the United States government decides that someone who is from another nation can no longer be present due to security concerns and related issues. A person is most likely to face deportation if they entered the country illegally, did not obtain proper work authorization through visas or other documents, committed crimes after entering the United States, or gave false or fraudulent answers or documents on their immigration applications. Once the government decides they want to deport an individual, they are given a right to defend themselves in court. If the individual is serious about remaining in the United States, they should seek out the services of Houston immigration lawyers. It is possible that the person can work with their attorney to come up with a defense strategy. If the defense is successful in court, the person may be able to remain in the United States, provided that they avoid similar problems in the future.
Changes in immigration law
Houston immigration attorneys have to remain current when addressing any changes made by Congress or the current administration of the executive branch of the United States government. These changes can have very real effects on clients, such as how immigration laws are enforced and new rules for things like obtaining a visa or green card.
Changes in law can impact individuals with protection under the DACA program or Temporary Protected Status, which potentially affect their eligibility for extensions or other immigration benefits. Asylum seekers can also be affected when attempting to enter the country depending on current policies and procedures for admission of immigrants from other nations.
It has also become more common for presidents to issue executive orders to make fast changes to the immigration system. Presidential executive orders can bring swift changes to immigration policies, including issues like the termination of certain programs or the introduction of new ones. An executive order can also be scrutinized by the federal courts if there are lawsuits related to the legality of the order and separation of powers issues related to the executive branch of government.
The government also responds to security issues from certain countries due to war, political violence, and other factors through travel bans. Travel bans and restrictions can impact individuals from specific countries, affecting their ability to travel and enter the United States, reunite with family, or pursue immigration benefits. On the other hand, there may be grants of humanitarian relief and asylum privileges once the United States has recognized a legitimate threat to the civilian population of a country in turmoil.
The Fonseca Law Firm is an immigration practice that can provide more information about issues such as citizenship, visas, green cards, and all related matters in the Houston area. Those who need advice during their immigration process should not hesitate to contact the firm and learn about their services.