Will I lose my immigration status if I am convicted of a felony?

On Behalf of | Aug 17, 2022 | Criminal Defense, Immigration Law |

If you are an immigrant facing criminal charges in Colorado, you are probably concerned about losing your immigration status.

To understand the potential threat a conviction has against your immigration plans, it is helpful to classify the crime.

What types of crimes threaten my immigration status?

There are a couple of crime categories that may threaten your immigration status. While these categories may sometimes overlap, all of these crimes can affect your eligibility for immigration.

Crimes of moral turpitude

Crimes of moral turpitude are generally acknowledged as crimes with depraved, reckless or malicious intent that the public may deem shocking. Some examples of these crimes are:

  • Aggravated assault
  • Abuse
  • DUI
  • Theft
  • Lying under oath
  • Crimes with weapons
  • Animal fighting

Aggravated felonies

The term “aggravated felonies” is somewhat of a misnomer because these crimes are not always aggravated and are not always felonies. Instead, this term refers to any crimes the U.S. Congress has designated using the label, such as the following:

  • Murder
  • Drug trafficking
  • Illegal arms trading
  • Kidnapping
  • Tax fraud
  • Money laundering
  • Failure to appear in court

What are the consequences if a court convicts me of a felony charge?

If a court convicts you of a crime of moral turpitude or an aggravated felony, this can result in deportation, a denied visa or green card, or even denied citizenship in the future. In addition, you will not be eligible to seek asylum from your country of origin. A criminal conviction also removes your right to voluntarily leave the country, instead requiring you to leave the country using government deportation procedures.

If you are facing felony charges as an immigrant, you should know the potential consequences a conviction may have for your immigration status and your future.