What is the new Immigration Act law that deals with past crime convictions? 10 Answers as of August 20, 2012

I have a quick question because of the upcoming August 15 2012 Immigration Act, it says people can possibly be denied of this benefit if they had committed a crime. I got arrested at 2010 (age 17) for stealing 20 dollars worth of stuff and had to go to court and I didn't get any fine or any punishment concerning to that matter but all I remember hearing is that as long as I don't commit another crime within 6 months time, I believe my record would be clean from any crime committed. That being said, would this be aproblem for this upcoming benefit? I have never been arrested before and never got in trouble with the law again.

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Law Offices of Patricia M. Corrales
Law Offices of Patricia M. Corrales | Patricia M. Corrales
Yes, under the recent details released for Deferred Action, which is not a change in the law but rather a new policy, you can be found ineligible if you have a criminal history; however, it depends on how many convictions you have and the nature of those convictions as there are different categories.

Given the fact that you have a criminal history, it would be beneficial for you to speak to an attorney with immigration knowledge and go through your immigration and criminal history to determine if you are eligible for Deferred Action.
Answer Applies to: California
Replied: 8/20/2012
Law Office of Bijal Jani | Bijal Jani
You would not be eligible if you were convicted of a family offense. From your information, it does not appear that this was a felony offense or any conviction occurred. Therefore, it appears you may be eligible.
Answer Applies to: New York
Replied: 8/15/2012
Abigail Law Firm, PLLC | Meghan Abigail
I would say this is a gray area right now. No one is 100% sure what the government will consider to be a "significant misdemeanor". Some lawyers think that a single petty theft will be ok, while others do not think so. You might consider waiting to see how other similar cases are decided before submitting your own application.
Answer Applies to: Texas
Replied: 8/15/2012
Natty Shafer Law
Natty Shafer Law | Nathaniel Shafer
You can have one misdemeanor, as long as it isn't a "serious misdemeanor" and still be eligible for a deferred action. If there weren't any enhancements, theft is not a serious misdemeanor.
Answer Applies to: Utah
Replied: 8/15/2012
Universal Law Group, Inc. | Francis John Cowhig
It could, depending on "exactly" what happened in your criminal. Were you charged as a juvenile or as an adult? Did you enter a plea? Were you found guilty or convicted. I suggest that you contact an experienced immigration attorney for a face-to-face consultation and give him/her all of the facts surrounding your criminal case. Your also need to bring any documents you have from the criminal case. He/she would then be in a better position to analyze you case and advise you of your options.
Answer Applies to: California
Replied: 8/15/2012
    Law Offices of Brian D. Lerner, A PC
    Law Offices of Brian D. Lerner, A PC | Brian David Lerner
    That would depend if it was a deferred adjudication or not and whether you actually plead guilty. *Dream Act - Deferred Action* As you may have heard, the DREAM ACT Deferred Action has now given the opportunity for numerous people to apply for the deferred action. This is not residency and it is not citizenship. However, if done properly, it does permit the issuance from U.S. Immigration of the approval of the Deferred Action, which in turn will allow you to get a work permit, remain legally in the U.S. for the duration of the approval of the deferred action and to be assured that you will not be placed into deportation proceedings. Additionally, this procedure will allow for us to apply for the DREAM Act Deferred Action even if you are in deportation / removal proceedings. Additionally, if you already have a removal or deportation order, we can apply for this relief. Finally, even if you or somebody you know is outside the U.S. that has been deported, but would have qualified, that person also is eligible to apply for the DREAM Act Deferred Action. Keep in mind a few advisals: 1. If President Obama is not re-elected, this form of Deferred Action may be denied and/or revoked; 2. There are no derivative beneficiaries that can apply for this type of Deferred Action. Therefore, there is a risk that you may get the approval, but your parents may be targeted to be placed into Removal Proceedings. However, at that point, depending on the particular case, we may be able to be retained to prepare and submit a Request for Prosecutorial Discretion. 3. If your DREAM Act Deferred Action is denied, there is always the risk that you will be placed into Removal Proceedings. However, the option for you to submit the Request for Prosecutorial Discretion is also open.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 8/15/2012
    World Esquire Law Firm
    World Esquire Law Firm | Aime Katambwe
    I imagine you should be OK but please do not take this to the bank yet. Your case is the reason why Dreamers who may have been stopped, detained, arrested, etc. need lawyers to help them through this important process that they have been waiting for almost all their lives. Some folks are saying that Dreamers do not need an attorney for this. A big mistake for something that important. I for instance would feel more comfortable seeing your record before applying for you under this new regulation. If I don't like what I see in your record, I would tell you not to apply since we do not know what happens to those who do not qualify. The bottom line is: if it has anything to do with law, go see a lawyer. If you (anyone) want bread, go to the baker. So, make sure someone looks at your record and explains it before sending your application in. Your problem sounds very minor, no pun intended (minor @ 17yrs), but you never know.
    Answer Applies to: California
    Replied: 8/15/2012
    Law Offices of Grinberg and Segal
    Law Offices of Grinberg and Segal | Alexander Segal
    It is important to clarify that the upcoming immigration benefit is not an act. It is merely an administrative relief that will defer removal from the United States and allow for employment authorization. A criminal conviction is not necessarily a bar.
    Answer Applies to: New York
    Replied: 8/15/2012
    Law Office of Pho Ethan Tran PLLC
    Law Office of Pho Ethan Tran PLLC | Pho Ethan Tran
    It doesn't appear as if this conviction will prevent you from applying for deferred action. Have you been arrested any other time?
    Answer Applies to: Texas
    Replied: 8/15/2012
    Coane and Associates
    Coane and Associates | Bruce Coane
    It will certainly be an issue. A lawyer would normally need to see the entire court file to evaluate it. If you were my client, I'd still file the case in hoped of getting the work permit, and in hopes of resolving or removing the arrest so it does not disqualify you.
    Answer Applies to: Texas
    Replied: 8/15/2012
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