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Is a DUI in California Reason for Deportation? What is the…

Is a DUI in...

Is a DUI in California Reason for Deportation?

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Answered in 15 minutes by:
3/14/2018
RobertJDFL
RobertJDFL, Attorney
Category: Legal
Satisfied Customers: 15,209
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Thank you for using Just Answer. I am a licensed attorney and look forward to helping you. I am reviewing your question and will reply back shortly.

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Good evening,

If you are an undocumented (illegal) immigrant, a DUI arrest can immediately lead to immigration proceedings and potentially being deported. The best choice you can make is to hire a lawyer immediately.

If you are in the US legally, then a single DUI conviction—on its own—will not result in deportation. The rules for deporting immigrants based on crimes come largely from the Immigration & Nationality Act (INA), which does not list DUI as a deportable crime. It also does not list DUI as a reason to deny an immigrant their green card.

The key determinant that the INA uses to determine which crimes affect immigration status is whether a crime involves criminal intent (strictly speaking, whether it is a “crime of moral turpitude”). DUI is notcommonly interpreted as requiring criminal intent. Thus, even if you plead Guilty or No Contest to a DUI charge, or you’re convicted, the charge does not lead to any action involving your immigration status. You will not be deported nor will your permanent resident status (“green card”) or citizenship be denied on these grounds.

This is true even if your DUI injured someone—indeed, even if your DUI led to a death. DUI manslaughter is a serious charge, but no one drinks and drives with the intention of killing someone. There is no criminal intent presumed.

Please let me know if you need clarification or additional information.

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Customer reply replied 4 months ago
I am 18 years old undocumented and have court March 19th 2018 the i was Pulled over and given DUI december 20th 2017. Going to Court will result in a Arrest automaticlly?

No, not at all. Your first court appearance is your arraignment, when the court will read the charge against you, and you can enter a plea of guilty or not guilty. Generally, it is in your best interest to enter a "not guilty" plea. The court will also ask if you intend to hire a private attorney (if you don't have one) or if you need a public defender to represent you, and if you do, they can help you arrange that.

If you enter a not guilty plea, then the case will be put on the court's schedule (their "docket") for a later hearing. That's it. The first court appearance is quick. It usually takes months to resolve a criminal case.

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Once you have a lawyer, then one of the first things they'll do is request whatever evidence the prosecution claims to have. This is called "discovery." Once they obtain that, and speak with you, it will give your lawyer a better idea as to how to defend you. You may very well have ways to fight this. Even if you don't however, then your lawyer will likely try to plea the matter down to something less serious, like reckless driving.

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Here's the risk for you --although it's been months since you were pulled over. Your information goes into a shared database. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) has access to that database. So they can see your undocumented status. So they could just decide to show up to your house one day. Or, they could similarly find out from court records and show up to your house to speak to you. Remember, if ICE comes to your house, you do not have to let them in or answer any questions unless they have a warrant. You should call a lawyer immediately.

CE doesn’t deport every illegal immigrant they catch. Even if they know you are not in the country legally, they may simply interview you and let you go. This is because ICE has limited resources, and they have been instructed to focus on high-priority cases.

After your interview or detention the ICE officer will make a determination as to whether to put you into removal proceedings. Removal proceedings are the legal process that can lead to deportation. Even if you are placed in the removal process you may or may not end up being deported. This process is slow—you will not be deported immediately.

Bear in mind that ICE is more likely to deport an immigrant who has a criminal record. You should fight your DUI charge. If you can win your DUI case, you may stand a better chance in removal proceedings.

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Customer reply replied 4 months ago
What happens if i have traffic tickets that i didn't take care of ?

Traffic tickets aren't grounds to be deported. They aren't criminal. The bigger issue is you are undocumented, and while you are not a serious concern for ICE as far as their focus goes, you certainly don't want a misdemeanor conviction from a DUI.

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Customer reply replied 4 months ago
i Can attend Court woithout any Fear of Being Arrested?

I cannot 100% guarantee that ICE wouldn't be there, but in my professional opinion, that is very, very unlikely, and your first court apperance as I said, is just to enter your plea, nothing else.

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Customer reply replied 4 months ago
What would it Happen if i Missed Court?

The the judge would issue what is called a "bench warrant" for your arrest for failing to show up, and you are subject to being arrested on that warrant. So try not to miss court.

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Customer reply replied 4 months ago
Thank's for the Advice

You're very welcome, pleasure to help. Please remember to leave a positive rating for me by clicking on the stars at the top of the page, as that is the only way experts like myself are compensated by the website. Thank you.

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