Immigration Judge Grants Waiver of Prior Fraud

CAJ0081BClaiming to be single when you are in fact married may get you a green card.  But what about your family that gets left behind? For a recent RMZD client, he will be reunited with his family after being granted a waiver of his prior fraud in Immigration Court.

In a recent decision, an Immigration Judge in Arlington, Virginia granted Edsel Basco a waiver for a prior misrepresentation. Edsel’s deportation proceeding was initiated after the  Department of Homeland Security began reviewing his immigration status and issued him a “Notice To Appear” in Immigration Court.

Edsel’s immigration story began more than 20 years ago in the Philippines. His father filed a petition for him so that he could immigrate to the U.S. when a visa became available. Edsel tried to wait patiently for an available visa number as an unmarried son of a green card parent. He eventually grew frustrated with the years of waiting for a visa. So, he marries his long-time girlfriend and started a family. Edsel’s wife gave birth to their daughter after they married. Edsel then became even more motivated to enter the U.S., knowing that it was his best opportunity to provide his family with a better life. He decided it was best for his family if he did not disclose his marriage during his interview at the U.S. Embassy, Manila. Otherwise he would be ineligible for a visa.

Edsel received his immigrant visa in 1997 and was reunited with his parents in the U.S., but he deeply missed his wife and daughter in the Philippines. He communicated with them as much as possible through telephone conversations, e-mail and letters, and also visited the Philippines as frequently as possible. However, he was unable to file petitions for his wife and daughter because he previously failed to disclose his marriage predating his immigrating to the U.S.

Edsel finally retained Reeves & Associates (“R&A”) to handle his immigration case. After a conference with Edsel, Attorney Reeves recommended seeking a waiver for the prior misrepresentation. Attorney Reeves explained to Edsel that this waiver is available for immigrants who already have their green cards, and it operates to forgive the prior misrepresentations and allow the immigrant to move on with their life. Attorney Reeves also assured Edsel that he would be well represented despite R&A’s main office being located office in Pasadena, CA and Edsel residing in Virginia.

In order for Edsel to be granted a waiver, it is necessary to demonstrate that he deserved a favorable exercise of discretion. Edsel’s case was assigned to Attorney Devin Connolly, a partner at the firm. Attorney Connolly prepared and documented Edsel’s waiver application which was filed with the Immigration Court highlighting Edsel’s close relationship with his elderly mother, his community involvement, and his dedication to achieving a successful professional career. Attorney Connolly also prepared Edsel to testify in Immigration Court and represented him in the Court proceedings.

R&A is pleased to announce that the Immigration Judge recently granted Edsel’s waiver. Following the hearing, Edsel thanked Attorney Connolly, stating “I really appreciate everything that you did. The Judge was impressed with how you prepared my case.”  Mr. Basco has now begun the process of becoming a naturalized U.S. citizen. He will now file petitions for his wife and daughter, allowing them to be reunited as a family in the U.S.