Green Cards After Previous Denials Because of Drug Use

dreamstime_s_79499369The U.S. Embassy in Manila will often deny cases when the applicant has previously used drugs. This youthful mistake can lead to a lifetime of being separated from loved ones in the United States.  However, with the right attorney and legal arguments, family reunification is still possible!

Our client, who we will refer to as Mary to protect her privacy, is as sweet of a woman who you will ever meet. She is certainly not as young as she used to be, but she still has hopes and dreams. And one of her dreams just came true – her son and grandchildren will be joining her in the United States as green card holders!

Mary’s son was previously denied his Immigrant Visa at the U.S. Embassy in Manila on two separate occasions because of drug use. And when his application was denied, that meant that the applications of Mary’s grandchildren were also denied.

Mary and her family retained Reeves Miller Zhang and Diza in 2016 to assist them. Mary explained to us how badly she wanted her grandchildren to come to the U.S., both because she wanted them to have a better life but also because she wanted to see them grow up.  Mary’s wish to be surrounded by family only intensified after her husband tragically passed away.

Attorney Devin Connolly knew there were two obstacles we would have to overcome. First, we would have to establish that Mary’s son was admissible to the U.S. despite his prior drug use. This would require overcoming the Embassy’s potential belief that Mary’s son was a drug addict, as well as a legal brief discussing why Mary’s son was eligible to immigrate to the U.S., even if he has previously experimented with drugs when he was younger.

The second issue was due to the ages of some of Mary’s grandchildren. The Immigration and Nationality Act generally requires children to be under 21-years-old and unmarried to immigrate as a derivative or a parent.  Here, some of the grandchildren were well beyond 21 years of age.  Attorney Connolly knew it would be a challenge convincing the consular officer that all of the children qualified under the Child Status Protection Act.

We are now happy to announce that Mary’s son and grandchildren have been issued their Immigrant Visas and will be receiving their green cards very soon. Mary is thrilled!  She has had a void in her life since her husband passed away, but now that she will be surrounded by her son and grandchildren, her heart will be filled with a different kind of joy.