Two Florida members of Congress introduced a bill that would allow Venezuelans who arrived in the U.S. prior to Jan 1, 2013, to adjust status to permanent resident. No word on how likely this is to move forward.
Washington, D.C.—In response to the continued instability in Venezuela, Reps. Carlos Curbelo (FL-26) and Alan Grayson (FL-09), Ileana Ros-Lehtinen (FL-27), and Debbie Wasserman Schultz (FL-23) have introduced the Venezuelan Refugee Assistance Act, H.R. 3744, to provide immigration relief to Venezuelans that have long-resided in the U.S., unable to return to their homeland:
“For the past decade, thousands of Venezuelans were forced to flee the brutal Chavez dictatorship. The situation has not improved under his hand-picked successor, Nicolas Maduro. In the last few months alone we have seen countless examples of the regime’s thuggish tactics, unethical behavior, and lethal force. They’ve arrested top opposition leaders like Leopoldo Lopez and the Mayor or Caracas, and banned others from running for public office, like Maria Machado. They’ve also arrested over 3,000 opposition protestors in a riot that left dozens dead. This bill will help those Venezuelan nationals who have made a new home in the United States to remain here if they choose to since it is dangerous to return home.
Specifically, this legislation would address the issue by adjusting the status of Venezuelans that arrived in the U.S. prior to Jan 1, 2013 as long as they do not have a criminal record and were never involved in the persecution of others. They have until January 1, 2019 to register for adjustment.
I applaud the Venezuelan-American community in the United States for their continued efforts on behalf of the people of Venezuela and I stand in unity for their noble cause of justice and freedom and thank Rep. Grayson for his leadership throughout the years to help the Venezuelan people. I would also like to thank Reps. Ros-Lehtinen and Wasserman Schultz for being original co-sponsors,” said Rep. Curbelo.
“I’m proud to join my Florida colleague Rep. Carlos Curbelo in introducing this important piece of bipartisan legislation. The political turmoil in Venezuela demands that the United States do everything in its power to protect those who have been able to escape to freedom in America. We cannot in good conscience force Venezuelans to return to a country where they face arrest, torture, and execution only because they oppose the government. Granting them permanent residence status is the best, most logical way to ensure their safety. I thank Rep. Curbelo for all he has done for the Venezuelan American community, and look forward to working with him to see this legislation out of committee and onto the floor for a vote,” said Rep. Grayson.
Rep. Curbelo will be holding a press conference regarding H.R. 3744 on Tuesday, October 13, 2015 in his Miami district office.
Sarasota Immigration Attorney Victoria Jaensch Karins
Jaensch Immigration Law Firm is proud to announce that attorney Victoria Jaensch Karins has been elected chairperson of the American Immigration Lawyers Association, Central Florida Chapter (AILA-CFC). The Central Florida Chapter includes over 300 immigration attorneys and, aside from southeast Florida, covers the entire state. Previously Ms. Karins served as the Education Chair and the Vice Chair Tampa Region for AILA-CFC. She is the first AILA-CFC chairperson ever from Sarasota.
As chair Ms. Karins will serve as the initial point of contact between AILA-CFC and outside organizations, companies, and agencies. She will be in charge of the chapter’s general operations and communications to and from the national level.
“It is an honor to be elected to this post. I look forward to serving my fellow immigration attorneys with enthusiasm,” says Ms. Karins, who obtained her law degree in 1994 and has been practicing immigration law ever since. Together with her brother, managing attorney P. Christopher Jaensch, and the other attorneys at Jaensch Immigration Law Firm, she is part of the largest immigration law firm on Florida’s Gulf Coast.
“With major potential changes in immigration law on the horizon it is very important for immigration attorneys to work together for positive reform,” says Ms. Karins, referring to the Senate bipartisan immigration reform bill. She herself has already been to DC to lobby for reform. “The political climate seems amenable to immigration reform,” says Ms. Karins, “the bill still has to go through the committee process and floor debate and we look forward to helping shape it throughout the process,” she continued. “That being said,” she added, “it is also important for us to educate the public to reduce the potential for fraudulent activities from unlicensed and fly-by-night organizations, otherwise known as notarios.”
Immigration reform could bring far-reaching changes such as the creation of a start-up visa, retiree visa, and most controversially, a path to citizenship for the 11 million undocumented immigrants living in the United States. “Certain people are too focused on the provisions regarding the path to citizenship, the bill contains so much more,” says Ms. Karins. “The creation of a start-up visa for foreign entrepreneurs, a W visa for foreign workers, the expansion of the H-1B visa program, and the creation of a retiree visa could all be very positive in terms of increased vitality and economic growth,” she continued.
For further questions Ms. Karins can be reached via her email – firstname.lastname@example.org – or by phone – (941) 366-9841.
Sarasota Immigration Attorney P. Christopher Jaensch
Sarasota is very attractive to international home-buyers. Foreigners visit during the winter, decide they want to stay, and begin the process of finding a way to do so legally and purchase a home. Many times, Sarasota real-estate agents are the first professional point of contact for these immigrants. While very knowledgeable about the Sarasota real estate market, they are not always equipped to inform their clients on the finer points of immigration law.
We want Sarasota to continue to be an attractive location for immigration. Immigrants bring a richness of diversity and entrepreneurial spirit that keeps this area vibrant. For examples read about how Nayda Cattin is opening our skies, or how Chris Coutelle is expanding our palettes. We want our local real estate agents to be well-informed about immigration law. That way, not only can they be more likely to succeed in procuring a home for an international prospect, but the area can benefit from a continual influx of diverse investors and job-creators.
Informing Sarasota Real Estate Agents
On October 18th, 2012, Sarasota Immigration Attorney Chris Jaensch spoke at the International 301 seminar. The Sarasota Association of Realtors (SAR) organized it with around 40 realtors from across the region attending. During this seminar, which was SAR’s last educational seminar of the year, attendees split in to groups to listen to individual panelists present case studies. Chris’s case study followed a hypothetical family from Australia. The “father” is a successful businessman and the “daughter” is an excellent tennis player. The family is looking for ways to move to the Sarasota-Bradenton area but still maintain ties to Australia. As it turns out, there are quite a few options in immigration law for doing so.
Please enjoy a video recording of Chris speaking at the seminar below.
We hope that this information helps local real estate agents as they continue to entice international home-buyers to call the Sarasota-Bradenton area home.
To see more, check out another video explaining how a real-estate based investment strategy can help an immigrant qualify for an E2 investor visa.
Sarasota Immigration Attorney P. Christopher Jaensch
Sarasota immigration attorney Chris Jaensch was asked to speak at today’s educational seminar for realtors who want to work with international clients. The seminar is put together by the Sarasota Association of Realtors and is the third in a series of seminars on working with international buyers.
In a slight change from previous seminars, the 301 seminar will offer a series of case studies. Case studies will cover topics such as international finance/currency exchange, international accountancy, Immigration Law, and interpersonal relationships with foreign buyers/sellers.
Chris Jaensch was asked to provide a case study on immigration law and we look forward to participating in the seminar. Buying real estate can be a very viable strategy to qualify for a visa.
Sarasota, FL – Abogados de Jaensch Immigration Law Firm recibieron con aprobación el anuncio reciente de la administración del Presidente Obama que inmigrantes jóvenes serán elegibles para solicitar “Acción Diferida” y la autorización de empleo. La política concederá a inmigrantes que son elegibles la oportunidad de vivir sin el miedo de ser deportado, y también les permitirá trabajar legalmente. Este anuncio lleva esperanza a inmigrantes y sus familias. Sin embargo, no es un arregló permanente, ni concede estatus legal permanente a ninguna persona.
Para ser elegible, un individuo tendrá que demonstrar que:
vino a los Estados Unidos siendo menor de dieciséis años de edad;
ha residido ininterrumpidamente en los Estados Unidos durante al menos cinco años antes de la fecha de este memorándum y está presente en los Estados Unidos en la fecha de este memorándum;
está asistiendo actualmente a la escuela, se ha graduado de la enseñanza secundaria, ha obtenido un certificado de desarrollo de educación general, o es un veterano que ha sido dado de alta con honores de los Guardacostas o las Fuerzas Armadas de los Estados Unidos;
no ha sido condenado por un delito mayor, un delito menor significativo, múltiples delitos menores ni representa una amenaza para la seguridad nacional o la seguridad pública;
no es mayor de treinta años de edad.
La acción diferida será disponible a individuos con casos en Corte de Inmigración, y también a individuos que solicitan el beneficio directamente con el Departamento de Inmigración.
La administración aun no está aceptando solicitudes para esta acción. En un plazo de sesenta días – en agosto – se espera que la administración de consejo e información sobre el proceso de solicitud para acción diferida y la autorización de empleo.
Si Usted no está en proceso de repatriación, NO solicite acción diferida en este momento. ¡Ojo con el fraude! Desafortunadamente, esta política puede abrir la puerta al fraude y decepción por “notarios.” En los Estados Unidos, los notarios no tienen la educación legal ni pueden actuar como abogado. Cualquier persona que dice que ya tiene la solicitud por acción diferida o que le pide honorarios para llenar una solicitud lo quiere estafar. El proceso para solicitar este beneficio no comienza hasta que sea anunciado por el gobierno federal. Su caso puede ser retrasado por causa de un notario, resultando en castigos, hasta deportación.
“¡Ten cuidado! No se ponga en peligro de ser descalificado por esta acción,” dijo Victoria Jeansch, una de los abogados de Jaensch Immigration Law Firm. “Asegúrase de que Usted hable con un abogado autorizado quien puede ayudarle con la solicitud y garantizar que Usted tiene la mejor posibilidad de beneficiarse de esta acción.”
Para más información, póngase en contacto con Jaensch Immigration Law Firm (941) 366-9841. Para más información sobre el anuncio, visite a www.aila.org/dream. También puede visitar www.ailalawyer.com para encontrar un abogado autorizado en su área.
Sarasota Immigration Attorney Victoria Jaensch Karins
Sarasota, FL – Local immigration attorney, Victoria Jaensch Karins, was recently accepted into the Leadership Manatee Class of 2012/2013. According to the Manatee Chamber of Commerce, “the Leadership Manatee program, begun in 1982, is designed to expose current and future leaders to all aspects of Manatee County. It is Manatee County’s premier leadership training program and has more than 850 graduates.”
Ms. Karins has been practicing immigration law for 17 years. She works at the Jaensch Immigration Law Firm in Sarasota. Her clients range from families seeking resolution to immigration issues to employers seeking to hire someone from overseas.
“I love my work because I get to add to the richness and diversity of the area,” Ms. Karins says. “I’m very honored to be a member of the next leadership class,” she continues. “I’m really looking forward to meeting my fellow class members, learning about what they do, and learning about how we can work together to improve the community.”
Jaensch Immigration Law Firm is located at 2198 Main St, Sarasota, FL 34237. It is the largest immigration law firm on Florida’s Gulf Coast. It can be reached via telephone at (941) 366-9841. For more information on the firm and on immigration issues visit:www.VisaAmerica.com
There are thousands of people who will benefit from the new Deferred Action policy. Until the regulations and rules regarding the program are released in 60 days or so, we urge you to use this time to collect documents that will help prepare your case.
DO NOT apply without getting your criminal history (including juvenile delinquency adjudications) reviewed FIRST. The Department of Homeland Security (DHS) will conduct background checks, collect information from local law enforcement, and examine your criminal history, including arrest records and criminal warrants. You risk having DHS and/or ICE detain and deport you, if you apply for deferred action without having your criminal history reviewed.
We do not know what kind of criminal history could bar you from the deferred action program announced by Obama last week. We know that convictions for a felony, a significant misdemeanor or three or more misdemeanors are bars to the program. Moreover, a person who immigration authorities consider a “public safety threat” or a “national security threat” will be barred.
What is a “significant misdemeanor”?
This is an unclear phrase. According to recent documents released by the government, it appears it will include offenses such as driving under the influence, possession of a controlled substance (e.g. marijuana), obstruction of justice, assault and theft. Many of these crimes can subject you to mandatory detention. Do not assume that your misdemeanor conviction is not a serious misdemeanor.
What could count as a “public safety threat”?
We do not know. It could be that officials will look behind dismissed charges or juvenile delinquency adjudications to determine whether a person presents a public safety threat. Juvenile delinquency adjudications any connections with gang activity or any action where the police stopped you and asked questions about gangs or gang membership any arrest or dismissed charge.
What could count as a “national security threat”?
We do not know. DHS broadly characterizes “participation in activities that threaten the United States” as a national security threat. This means it will not be limited to criminal convictions.
What should I do?
1. Get a copy of your record from whatever court your case was heard, including all juvenile delinquency adjudications. Try to get copies of police reports, a criminal history background check, or your “rap sheet.” Many states already have systems for you to collect your criminal history. In many cases, you can find it on your local county website or state government websites. Make sure you get them from all states where you believe you may have been arrested or convicted.
2. Meet with a nonprofit organization, an immigration attorney or advocate experienced in deportation defense or the immigration consequences of criminal convictions. Make sure they review all your arrest information and criminal conviction documents. Do NOT consult “Notarios” if you have a criminal history.
Leaves Door Open to Future Challenges to Racial Profiling Provision
June 25, 2012
Washington D.C. – In a blow to the state anti-immigration movement, the Supreme Court ruled today that the authority to enforce immigration laws rests squarely with the federal government, limiting the role that states may play in crafting state-level answers to immigration enforcement. By a 5-3 margin, the Court struck down three of the four provisions of SB 1070 that were challenged by the Obama administration as pre-empted under federal law. While the Court agreed that Arizona’s attempt to limit immigration by creating new laws and new penalties to punish undocumented immigrants was pre-empted, it found that a provision requiring local police to investigate the legal status of suspected undocumented immigrants was not pre-empted on its face. The court read this provision very narrowly, however, leaving open the door to future lawsuits based on racial profiling and other legal violations.
“Today’s decision makes clear that the federal government—and only the federal government—has the power and authority to set the nation’s immigration policies,” said Benjamin Johnson, Executive Director of the American Immigration Council. “Despite its strongly worded rejection of Arizona’s effort to set its own immigration policies, the Court adopted a wait-and-see approach to the controversial racial profiling section of the law. There is already ample evidence of discrimination and abuse in Arizona, and many communities in the state will bear the brunt of the Court’s unwillingness to face that reality. It’s time for Congress to heed the dire warnings contained in this opinion and recommit to fixing our broken immigration system.”
The story of Luke Rodgers, ex-Red Bull soccer star, provides a cautionary tale for immigrant athletes in Sarasota.
Luke Rodgers in Red Bulls Uniform
Luke Rodgers is a brilliant soccer (ehem, football) player and a prolific goal-scorer. In January 2011 he signed with the New York Red Bulls for an MLS debut season. He was able to secure a P-1 Athlete Visa beforehand after a lengthy process. The visa allowed him to play in the United States for a year.
Despite being out for two months due to plantar fasciitis (strange how European soccer players tend to get injured right after they arrive in America). He still scored 9 goals in 23 games.
Unfortunately, Mr. Rodgers’ P-1 visa was not renewed and on March 30, 2012 the Red Bulls had to terminate their contract with him. He is now playing for a club in Norway.
But the Red Bulls continued to pursue Mr. Rodgers and, according to the New York Post, he has an appointment coming up with the US Consulate in Norway concerning his appeal of the P-1 visa denial.
The reason that Mr. Rodgers is having trouble with his P-1 Athlete Visa is because he has several arrests on his record from England. The supporters may appreciate his fiery, feisty style of play but the USCIS does not. Any previous arrests are seen as criminal inadmissibilities and hurt the applicant’s case.
It is important for immigrant athletes in the Sarasota area who are thinking of applying for or renewing a P-1 visa to be aware of the types of issues they may face. If you find yourself in a situation similar to Mr. Rodgers’ you might think about contacting a Sarasota immigration attorney.
What documentation will be sufficient to demonstrate that an individual came to the United States before the age of 16?
Documentation sufficient for an individual to demonstrate that he or she came to the United States before the age of 16 includes, but is not limited to: financial records, medical records, school records, employment records, and military records.
What documentation will be sufficient to demonstrate that an individual has resided in the United States for a least five years preceding June 15, 2012?
Documentation sufficient for an individual to demonstrate that he or she has resided in the United States for at five years immediately preceding June 15, 2012 includes, but is not limited to: financial records, medical records, school records, employment records, and military records.
What documentation will be sufficient to demonstrate that an individual was physically present in the United States as of June 15, 2012?
Documentation sufficient for an individual to demonstrate that he or she was physically present on June 15, 2012, the date the memorandum was issued, includes, but is not limited to: financial records, medical records, school records, employment records, and military records.
What documentation will be sufficient to demonstrate that an individual is currently in school, has graduated from high school, or has obtained a general education development certificate (GED)?
Documentation sufficient for an individual to demonstrate that he or she is currently in school, has graduated from high school, or has obtained a GED certificate includes, but is not limited to: diplomas, GED certificates, report cards, and school transcripts.
What documentation will be sufficient to demonstrate that an individual is an honorably discharged veteran of the Coast Guard or Armed Forces of the United States?
Documentation sufficient for an individual to demonstrate that he or she is an honorably discharged veteran of the Coast Guard or Armed Forces of the United States includes, but is not limited to: report of separation forms, military personnel records, and military health records.
Are individuals with a conviction for a felony offense, a significant misdemeanor offense, or multiple misdemeanors eligible for an exercise of prosecutorial discretion under this new process?
No. Individuals who have been convicted of a felony offense, a significant misdemeanor offense, or three or more other misdemeanor offenses not occurring on the same date and not arising out of the same act, omission, or scheme of misconduct are not eligible to be considered for deferred action under the new process.
What offenses qualify as a felony?
A felony is a federal, state, or local criminal offense punishable by imprisonment for a term exceeding one year.
What offenses qualify as a “significant misdemeanor”?
A significant misdemeanor is a federal, state, or local criminal offense punishable by no more than one year of imprisonment or even no imprisonment that involves: violence, threats, or assault, including domestic violence; sexual abuse or exploitation; burglary, larceny, or fraud; driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs; obstruction of justice or bribery; unlawful flight from arrest, prosecution, or the scene of an accident; unlawful possession or use of a firearm; drug distribution or trafficking; or unlawful possession of drugs.
How many non-significant misdemeanors constitute “multiple misdemeanors” making an individual ineligible for an exercise of prosecutorial discretion under this new process?
An individual who is not convicted of a significant misdemeanor but is convicted of three or more other misdemeanors not occurring on the same day and not arising out of the same act, omission, or scheme of misconduct is not eligible to be considered for deferred action under this new process.
What qualifies as a national security or public safety threat?
If the background check or other information uncovered during the review of an individual’s request for deferred action indicates that the individual’s presence in the United States threatens public safety or national security, he or she will be ineligible for an exercise of prosecutorial discretion. Indicia that an individual poses such a threat include, but are not limited to, gang membership, participation in criminal activities, or participation in activities that threaten the United States.
Will dependents and other immediate relatives of individuals who receive deferred action pursuant to this process also be eligible to receive deferred action?
No. The new process is available only to those who satisfy the eligibility criteria. As a result, the immediate relatives, including dependents, of individuals who receive deferred action pursuant to this process are not eligible to apply for deferred action as part of this process unless they independently satisfy the eligibility criteria.
If I receive deferred action through this process, will I be able to travel outside the United States?
USCIS is exploring this issue and will resolve it in the coming weeks as part of its implementation plan.
Will there be any exceptions to the requirement that an individual must have resided in the United States for a least five years preceding June 15, 2012?
An individual must demonstrate that he or she has resided in the United States for a least five years preceding June 15, 2012. Brief and innocent absences undertaken for humanitarian purposes will not violate this requirement.
JAENSCH IMMIGRATION LAW FIRM IS READY TO HELP THOSE WHO WANT TO KNOW MORE
Sarasota, FL– On June 15, 2012, the Obama Administration announced that younger immigrants may be eligible for “Deferred Action” and work authorization. The policy will grant qualified immigrants the opportunity to live free from fear of deportation and allow them to work legally. This exciting new development brings hope to immigrants and their families.
Not long after the announcement the attorneys at Jaensch Immigration Law Firm started getting calls from individuals interested in knowing their options. Attorney Victoria Jaensch Karins responded quickly. Together with the other attorneys she developed an intake sheet which interested persons can fill out to see if the new policy applies to their case.
“We are ready to offer qualified legal advice to any who seek it in the wake of the new policy,” says Ms. Karins. “Unfortunately there are some people who pose as legal advisers but who are not qualified and who deliberately misinform people.” Ms. Karins wants to make sure that interested persons are aware first and foremost that the Administration is not yet accepting applications for deferred action unless the applicant is in deportation proceedings at this time. There should be further instructions and an opening for applications after 60 days.
In regards to those who may intentionally misinform potential applicants, they are called “Notarios.” In theUnited States, notarios have no legal background and cannot act as a qualified attorney. For example, as mentioned above, individuals thinking of applying for deferred action should not do so unless they are in deportation proceedings. However, some notarios will claim that they can submit an application, for a fee. An immigrant’s case can be delayed by notarios acting in bad faith, resulting in penalties and even deportation.
“Be careful! Do not endanger your chance to qualify for this action,” said Ms. Karins. “Make sure to contact a genuine immigration lawyer who can help ensure your application has the best chance of being filed properly,” she continued.
For more information, contact Jaensch Immigration Law Firm, (941) 366-9841, or visit their blog, ImmigrationSarasota.com.