By Attorneys Gregory J. Boult & Nancy E. Miller
Any review of the denial of an application for a waiver of inadmissibility begins with a basic question – is the applicant inadmissible to the United States? To put it simply, there are instances when an individual is found by the government to be inadmissible to the United States when in fact he is not. While an individual may have filed an application for a waiver because he or she was directed to do so by the government, in some instances the correct course of action would have been to legally and/or factual argue that no such application was required. Unfortunately, without competent representation, the basic mistake of failing to contest an initial finding of inadmissibility is more likely to occur. Where it can (and should) be argued that an application for a waiver never should have been requested in the first instance, an experienced and knowledgeable immigration attorney can pursue a variety of options to redress such an error. These options include the timely filing of a motion with the government to rectify such an error, or through the refiling of the case with a legal brief addressing the issue of inadmissibility. Both of these options often prove successful.
In those instances in which an application for a waiver was properly requested by the government, a significant number of these applications are ultimately denied because they are inadequately prepared. Filing an application for a waiver of inadmissibility is complicated – the legal standard for the granting of the waiver must be met, and this must be accomplished through the presentation of legally sufficient supporting evidence. Even minor defects in an application can result in a denial. As a result, individuals who have a strong legal and factual basis for the granting of a waiver of inadmissibility often have their applications denied because their applications were not adequately prepared. However, the denial of an application for a waiver of inadmissibility does not preclude the filing of subsequent application. This point is extremely significant for those who have had their applications for a waiver denied – there is still hope even after a denial. As the preparation of an application for a waiver of inadmissibility is a complex endeavor, with little margin for error, the best chance an individual has to obtain an approval of his or her application is through retaining an experienced and knowledgeable immigration attorney. While it is preferable to do so at the onset of the process, even once an application for a waiver is denied, an experienced and knowledgeable immigration attorney can prepare a superior subsequent application which will afford an applicant a much higher chance of obtaining an approval.