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Guillermo J. Senmartin, Esq.
Guillermo J. Senmartin, Esq., Immigration Lawyer
Category: Immigration Law
Satisfied Customers: 108981
Experience:  10+ years of experience in various aspects of U.S. Immigration Law.
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Hi Everyone! I dont know where else to find answers so i

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Hi Everyone!

I dont know where else to find answers so i thought i'd post this thread hoping that somebody would share some of their experience or knowledge. Back in 2004 i was given a traffic ticket, i paid the fine and went to a traffic school.. (it's for failure to stop at a stop sign). In 2006, i did a very stupid mistake and took someone's sim card from a cellphone, and put it on my cellphone so i can download games with it. Then i was caught and they pressed charges. On Sept 2008, I was called to the court and i was charged two misdemeanors (1 for petty theft of the sim card and 1 for embezzlement), i had to pay a restitution of $100, the judge dismissed the petty theft leaving only the embezzlement. I was ordered to serve 30 days in county jail and finished 3-year probation. In 2010 i had this record expunged --> But of course that doesn't mean anything to the immigration, you cannot retract the original sentence. In 2012, I contacted an immigration attorney about my case because my green card has expired and i need to renew asap! But because a lot of people saying that i could get deported, i hired a lawyer to be in a safe side and fortunately i was able to renew without problems. Now, it has been 5 years since my sentence, I contacted again my lawyer and he said we are now okay to file for citizenship because i have reached 5 years of good moral character. My lawyer strongly advised me not to file for myself because my N-400 could get denied. My case is not an aggravated felony because my lawyer said, no lawyer will represent an aggravated felon because that is an automatic bar from any immigration benefits. I am just very worried, my question is what are my chances of getting my citizenship approved? can i take my lawyer with me to the interview so he can represent me when it comes to questions regarding my misdemeanor? ank you all and I appreciate all feedback.
Hello and thank you for using our service. My name isXXXXX and I am a licensed attorney and will try my best to help you. I just ask for two things: 1) Before you sign off, please remember to rate me positively as that is the only way that I am paid and your question does not close after you rate me so I can still answer additional questions without additional charge if you have follow-ups even weeks or months later; and, 2) IF I have bad news for you, please remember I am only the messenger. When you rate me, it is my service to you that you rate, not whether the news is good or bad. I will try my best to give you a solution, but sometimes the law does not have a good one.

When was the exact date that your case closed including when your probation (if any) ended? And it was two charges but once incident, correct?
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

I am not sure when was the cased closed but I was sentence on September 9, 2008. My 3 year probation ended somewhere in 2010. And yes two charges in one incident.

Then you need to wait a full 5 years from the date that your probation ended. If you apply before, the chances of denial are very high and you would just be throwing away $680. You aren't going to get deported for such a minor offense, but you'd be throwing money away. So wait until 5 years have passed since your probation terminated which will be sometime around 2015 and then you would have a much better chance of approval. Please let me know if you have additional questions and please do not forget to rate my service to you (not the state of the law) as that is the only way that I can get credit for my assistance to you. Even after you rate the service, I can still answer additional questions for you without additional charge. If you do rate me positively, a bonus is always appreciated. If you would like to request me in the future, just go to Thank you!
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

Okay well, next year i have to travel to philippines because i am getting married and everything is all set ..... will my misdemeanor find me inadmissible? if i travel out of US for at least 3 months and then come back, will i have problems at the airport? ... and how come my lawyer is telling me that i can apply for citizenship next month? i am very confused.

No because it is a misdemeanor with less than a 6 months sentence. It fits into the petty offense exception, but you should carry with you certified copies of the police report and court disposition of the case so that you have as little delay as possible coming back into the U.S.

As far as why your lawyer is telling you that you can apply now, perhaps he doesn't have as much experience as I have. Perhaps he needs to charge you money because he needs the business and doesn't want to wait 2 more years to charge you. He isn't lying to you, per se. You have a chance, but it is not a good chance at all in my opinion and it is just too convenient for him to say if you are denied, "Well, we tried. You had a chance but the officer was just too strict. We can try again in two years and it will be a better chance. I'll even give you a 5% discount when I charged you again. See you in two years!" Please let me know if you have additional questions and please do not forget to rate my service to you (not the state of the law) as that is the only way that I can get credit for my assistance. Even after you rate the service, I can still answer additional questions for you without additional charge. And don't forget that bonuses are always appreciated! Thank you.

Customer: replied 3 years ago.

You know that's how i feel about my lawyer, he just wants my money. So, here are some few questions i need answers and i will rate you.


1. What is the best advise you can give me? Since i have to wait until 2015 to apply for citizenship, will i be okay to apply for my self (not hiring a lawyer), will i have greater chances of getting approved? I have friends and family letters to prove a good moral character.


2. Since i have to travel outside of US, Is there a type of waiver i should obtain in order to successfully enter US again?


3. Does my case falls under petty offense exception?


just 3 honest answers please. Thank you so much!

1) I've already given it to you. Wait until 2015 before applying, carry with you when you travel certified copies of the police report and court disposition, and stay out of trouble. You will still need the letters from friends and family in 2015. If you had letters from important people in the community like judges, the mayor, police, maybe, then you would have a better chance now, but since you are probably like most others that can only get letters from friends, family, co-workers, bosses, etc., then you should wait.

2) There is no waiver you need because your crime seems to fit under the petty offense exception.

3) Yes. To qualify, you need three things:

  • you committed only one crime involving moral turpitude; and

  • you were not sentenced to a term of imprisonment in excess of six months ”; and

  • the offense carries a maximum possible sentence of one year or less.



Please do not forget to rate me positively. Since I am not paid a salary, it is the only way that I get paid. You are not charged again and I will not abandon you after you rate me positively if you have additional questions. Thank you.

Guillermo J. Senmartin, Esq. and other Immigration Law Specialists are ready to help you

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