When it comes to deciding whether a person is granted their visa, the government does consider their moral character. Now this isn’t the only factor they consider when reviewing an application, but it is an important factor.
When the government thinks of a person as having good moral character, they are generally the type of person that has had zero to very few run ins with law enforcement. This also mean having no real convictions, especially the more serious kind such as felonies.
However, criminal charges are not necessarily the only factor of what a good or bad moral character is.
Drug and alcohol usage may also be a factor when it comes to good moral character. Past usage of drugs and heavy usage of alcohol aren’t a guaranteed disqualifier; however, it may get the government to look more closely at your application.
Another factor of good moral character is if you fulfill your obligations. This means, you don’t have any leans against you either through a lawsuit against you, or worse. Let’s say you were married with children and became divorced. If you have had to pay alimony and child support but didn’t, then that may be taken as a sign of bad moral character.
As stated before, these examples do not necessarily mean that your file will be rejected, however the one sure way to have your file rejected is to lie. If you have had issues with alcohol in the past, or other things such as gambling problems, the best thing your can do is be forthcoming with that information.
This is because the government is very thorough and will probably discover all the bad things in your history. And if you make it difficult for them, they will not look at your past very favorably.
You can always explain things that happened in your past and minimize the damage it has on your case. Especially if it is in the distant past of your life and its no longer a part of your life. Lying about it however is the worst thing you can do.
But before you admit any guilt to an immigration officer, it is very advisable to hire an experienced and capable immigration attorney to hear all the facts of your case. This is because there may be things that you have done that you feel bad about that may not necessarily be considered a lack of good moral character.
One example of this is traffic violations. You may have received a ticket for speeding and may indeed feel bad about it, however it is not really considered as a sign of a bad moral character.
The most important thing to remember is: for the best advice for your personal file, it’s a good idea to hire a seasoned and competent immigration attorney. Never lie. And depending on the advice of your attorney, be forthcoming with the government.
In order to be sure that you meet the requirements for an immigrant Visa and/ or to properly file a petition, it is advisable to seek legal guidance from an experienced immigration attorney.
This is an immigration legal blog. It is not intended to be used as legal advise. For further information please contact the law offices of attorney Ramona Kennedy.
Ramona Kennedy (Attorney) received her Jurisprudence Doctorate in America and is a licensed attorney in California (USA). Ramona Kennedy is a member of American Immigration Lawyers Association (AILA). Ramona Kennedy is fluent in English and Farsi (reading & writing) & speaks Azeri Turkish.
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