Houston Immigration Attorney
Houston Immigration Attorney
Houston Immigration Attorney
The decision is, as always, primarily motivated and held aloft by fears of terrorism. USCIS simply can't conceive of a well-motivated decision to leave the US for a period of more than six months. The unspoken assumption is that any permanent resident spending more than six months out of country is clearly bent on doing evil. Fingerprinting before reentry is a measure designed to prevent permanent residents from leaving the country for terrorist training. It's also designed to prevent an "identity switch" on a legal green card, which would allow known or suspected terrorists to utilize the clean records of their countrymen to slip stealthily under US radar as they "re" enter the country on someone else's green card.
Critics allege that the new policy is at root ineffective, and-worse-appears to be a simple grab for money, with the fee for fingerprinting and reentry application sitting pretty at $80.00. Further, it requires permanent residents to be almost prescient in order to handle the mountain of paperwork with any efficiency-and it's simply impossible for them to know in advance when relatives overseas will fall ill, or jobs will transfer, or universities will accept them.
Of course, the most obvious criticism of this measure, and all measures that attempt to combat crime with paperwork, is the simple fact that criminals are, well, so criminal. Those who are bent on violence, destruction, and damage certainly aren't concerned with filing proper paperwork to stay out of trouble, which means that the only permanent residents inconvenienced by this new measure are the ones we should be actively recruiting-the type that actually care about doing things right.
Countless proposals have been made at both the state and federal level in the past couple of years to address the problem of illegal immigration. Some politicians want to build a fence across our entire southern border. Yet other politicians advocate the idea of punishing employers who knowingly hire illegal immigrants. For obvious reasons, there is no state whose residents are more adamant about finding solutions than the state of Texas.
Last year, Texas Governor Rick Perry decided to harness the vigilante spirit that exists among some Texans and install video cameras along the southern border that could be monitored by watching camera feeds on a home computer. Unfortunately, it appears that our observation efforts have fallen quite short of expectations.
The state of Texas received a $2 million federal grant to install surveillance cameras along the U.S.-Mexico border, with objectives for the program being set by the Texas Border Sheriffs Coalition. An investigation into the program was recently published, and the results are far from impressive. While the coalition hoped to make 1200 arrests in its first year as a result of citizen tips, there have only been three arrests in the first six months. They planned to install 200 cameras, which would constitute one camera for every six miles of border, but so far only thirteen cameras are up and operational, leaving 80 miles of border between each camera. With these numbers as evidence, the case that federal funds are being used effectively is a difficult one to make.
Despite these initial disappointments, Governor Perry remains committed to the program. As his spokeswoman, Katherine Cesinger, stated, he sees the camera as a way of "utilizing technology so you don't have to pay for an extra set of eyes." Opponents argue that Gov. Perry is simply trying to win favor with conservatives who have strong feelings about illegal immigration and needs to admit that the program has little to no effect on real border security.
The process of completing immigration forms can become downright overwhelming. Some of the information can be confusing and difficult to interpret. When you're filing important, time sensitive forms required to become a U.S. citizen, need help determining which type of visa is best for your situation, or need assistance handling unexpected issues that come up during the filing process, the smartest thing to do is consult with an expert. An immigration attorney can help you navigate immigration laws and policies so that you make the best decisions.
When you make the decision to hire an immigration attorney, finding a qualified, competent attorney should be priority. You'll find that as with any other profession, some attorneys are more experienced and better qualified than others. When dealing with the complex and sometimes changing U.S. immigration laws and policies, finding the most experienced counsel is in your best interest. If you're thinking about hiring an immigration attorney, here are a few practical tips to help you make the best choice:
Get a Recommendation from a Satisfied Client
Ask friends and family for recommendations. Be sure to specify that you are looking for an attorney who specializes in immigration law. Even if your friends and family haven' dealt with immigration first hand, they still may be able to connect you with someone who has retained the services of an immigration attorney.
Don't Make a Decision Based Solely on Rates
You don't want to base your decision on the rates an attorney charges. Attorney rate charges are all over the map determined by a number of things: location, specialty, years of experience, etc. Some rates are fixed, some hourly and others require a retainer.
There is nothing wrong with minding your budget and choosing the professional services you can actually afford; however, keep in mind that an attorney charging lower fees may not have the experience, staff and equipment to provide exactly what you need. Also an attorney charging higher rates is no guarantee of legal competency.
Ask Whether or Not the Lawyer Will Handle Your Case Personally
Some attorney's offices will immediately turn your case over to a junior attorney, paralegal or trained assistants once they take you on as a client. That means you may never deal directly with the attorney again. This doesn't mean that your case will not be handled in the most professional manner; but if you prefer to work directly with the attorney, you should communicate this early on.