Tampa Immigration Violation Lawyer
When one thinks of an immigration violation, the most common image that comes to mind a foreign citizen crossing the border into the United States. But, criminal immigration violations cover a much broader scope of activity. Many employers do not know is that they can be criminally charged for recruiting or hiring illegal aliens.
According to estimates, at least 1.7 million people entered the United States illegally in 2020. Millions more entered legally but overstayed their visas and were therefore present in the U.S. without authorization. In all, the illegal immigrant population stands at nearly 15 million. Our Tampa immigration violation lawyer has met with many immigrants facing deportation and has listened closely to their stories.
Immigration has become a divisive political issue recently. But the federal government has for decades criminalized a wide variety of conduct which applies not only to those entering the U.S. illegally but to U.S. businesses and citizens who might aid, transport, or employ them. If you are suspected of violating an immigration law, please contact Trombley & Hanes today.
Types of Immigration Violations
Immigration law applies to both individuals and businesses which try to evade immigration laws. Some of the more common violations relate to the following:
Aliens can face prosecution for:
- Entering the United States without permission
- Entering a marriage for the purpose of evading immigration law
- Falsifying passports or international travel documents
Smugglers can face prosecution for:
- Harboring, transporting, or assisting unauthorized aliens into the United States
- Selling citizenship papers
Working without Authorization
It is illegal for aliens to work in the U.S. unless they have proper authorization. We have seen aliens charged with:
- Using false identification documents in the employment verification process
- Stealing or using someone else’s identity for employment verification
- Using a stolen Social Security Number for employment purposes
Seeking Benefits of Citizenship Illegally
An alien can be charged for:
- Falsely claiming to be a citizen to obtain government benefits
- Falsely claiming to be a citizen to register for state or federal elections
- Illegally voting in elections
Employing Unauthorized Aliens
Employers can also face prosecution for not following immigration law when it comes to employment:
- Hiring or recruiting an alien who lacks proper work authorization
- Continuing to employ an alien when you know he or she lacks work authorization
- Making a false attestation that you have properly verified work authorization
Consequences and Penalties for Violations
An alien who entered or stayed illegally will most likely be deported and barred from returning to the U.S. unless extraordinary circumstances apply. It is possible for some illegal aliens to request asylum or request a waiver from deportation.
A company which employs illegal aliens can face a civil injunction to stop the practice. If they have engaged in a consistent pattern of illegal conduct, then they will also face criminal penalties. Company executives could face time in prison and the business might be barred from federal contracts.
Prosecutors must establish that defendants knew of the crime. But any prosecution for employing illegal migrants can destroy a company’s reputation. We strongly recommend quickly obtaining legal counsel to protect against the charges and protect your company’s reputation.
Speak with a Tampa Immigration Violation Lawyer Today
Trombley & Hanes is an established law firm with deep experience in immigration law. We offer a confidential consultation for those seeking legal assistance. Please reach out to a Tampa immigration violation lawyer as soon as possible.
Frequently Asked Questions for Tampa Immigration Violation
Can I Be Arrested for an Immigration Violation for Overstaying My Visa?
If you have overstayed your visa, you may be considered unlawfully present in the United States. The severity of unlawful presence penalties depends on the offense’s length and other possible extenuating circumstances. To avoid imprisonment or heavy fines, a person who is unlawfully present in the U.S. must depart the country within 90 days of a final order of removal, take steps to ensure a timely departure, including applying for any necessary travel documents, or present themselves for removal at the time and location specified by the Attorney General.
Overstaying a visa from 180 days to under one year will prohibit the person from reentering the country for three years or procuring a new visa. Overstaying a visa for a period more significant than one year prohibits a person from reentering or obtaining a new visa for ten years. Ignoring or defying a final departure order can lead to even more significant consequences, including heavy fines and up to four years of jail time. Contact our immigration violations attorneys in Tampa to learn how we can help with your circumstances so that you can pursue proper legal solutions for your needs.
Can Florida Employers Face Prosecution for Unknowingly Hiring Undocumented Workers?
Florida employers violate the law only when it knowingly hires or employs undocumented workers. The presence of unauthorized workers does not necessarily mean the employer committed a crime. Prosecuting an employer for hiring undocumented workers requires proof that it has either actual or constructive knowledge that the employed individual is an undocumented worker. However, employers can face civil penalties, including heavy fines or the loss or suspension of a business license. If they have engaged in a consistent pattern of illegal conduct, they will also face criminal penalties. If your business or your freedom is in jeopardy because of immigration violations, contact our skilled Florida civil litigation attorneys for help today.
Will I Automatically Be Deported If I Am Arrested for a Crime in Florida?
It depends on the severity of the crime. In addition to aggravated felonies — including murder, sexual abuse, and drug trafficking — and crimes of moral turpitude, other grounds for deportation outlined in the Immigration and Nationality Act include certain convictions related to controlled substances, firearms, and domestic violence. If you have been charged with a crime in Florida, and are worried you may be deported, contact our immigration violations and criminal defense lawyers in Tampa today to learn how we can help with both of your legal issues.
What Should I Do If Florida Police or ICE detains me for an Immigration Violation?
If you are arrested and detained by Florida law enforcement or Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE), you have rights – invoke them. Remain silent and ask for an attorney right away. If you have been arrested by Florida law enforcement, you have the right to make a local phone call. You should contact a criminal defense and immigration violation attorney right away. If ICE has detained you, you have the right to contact your consulate or have an officer inform the consulate of your detention.
You have the right to a hearing to challenge a deportation order unless you waive your right to a hearing. We can help. Contact our immigration violation defense attorneys in Tampa today.